Despite the increasing cases of COVID-19, people are now starting to explore places again. While staying at home and just looking forward to traveling once the pandemic ends remain the safest option, some people are willing to take the risk.
We get it, traveling is a fulfilling and exciting experience that no gadget or luxury item can replace. However, you should remain vigilant when traveling during the pandemic.
Given this, many travelers want to know what the safest means of transportation is.
Traveling by Car
Traveling by car gives you the advantage of controlling who gets to travel with you. Plus, using a car means that you can take any route you want. As a result, you can avoid silent carriers of the coronavirus. However, you are still subjected to various risks when traveling by car.
According to the CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention), these risks include stopping at a gas station, using the bathroom, and getting food during the trip. However, these risks can be reduced if you take some steps.
For instance, if you just bought a used car for a road trip after checking its history report, it’s better to disinfect the whole car before letting anyone enter it. You can also prepare food for the trip to avoid diners and convenience stores.
Traveling by Plane
As opposed to traveling by car, getting on a flight means that you can’t choose who you’re traveling with. This can make the flight riskier as you are not sure if there’s an asymptomatic person on board or not.
However, airline companies impose strict sanitation policies for domestic and international flights. They are mandated to disinfect the whole plane after each flight, have the staff wear full PPE (personal protective equipment), and test their crew. Many airlines opt to not serve food as well to further reduce the risk of transmission.
Given these, traveling by plane is as safe as it can be. However, it is not 100% foolproof as you have to interact with strangers.
Which Is Safer: Car or Plane?
Dr. Arnold Barnett, a statistics professor at MIT did a study to see which one is safer.
According to him, the risk of getting COVID-19 from a stranger sitting next to you on a plane is 1 in 4,300. If the middle seats are empty, the risk goes down to 1 in 7,700. However, this is considerably higher compared to traveling in a car.
He explained that if all passengers in a car have no COVID-19, there is no risk of getting infected during a 1,000-mile trip.
Thus, traveling by car is safer than traveling by plane during the COVID-19 pandemic. Essentially, a car trip means you don’t have to interact with strangers and share the same breathing space with someone who might be infected with the virus.
While land travel is safer than air travel nowadays, traveling is still a risky activity. However, if you are ready to take the risk, take precautions. Remember to always wash your hands, practice social distancing, and wear PPE. Stay safe!