Welcome to the sixteenth episode of the Travel Well with Allan Wright!
In this week’s episode, Allan provides seven pandemic travel updates including airline industry news, airport testing updates, and even COVID-sniffing dogs!
Not on our email list already? Subscribe now to get our weekly travel news updates delivered directly to your inbox.
Can’t watch the video right now? Here’s the video transcript of Seven Pandemic Travel Updates – Episode 16:
Hi, my name is Allan Wright. Welcome to the Travel Well with Allan video update. Today I’d like to talk about seven news items that affect travel during the pandemic.
Number one: Airline furloughs have begun. We all knew this was coming on October 1st. United and American have furloughed 32,000 people already. More furloughs are coming. It’s going to affect the economy and it’s going to affect the travel industry.
Number two: More at COVID airport tests are happening now. Last week, I talked about how United Airlines is offering tests to passengers on its San Francisco to Hawaii run for immediate tests right there at the airport. Now American, Southwest, and Hawaiian are doing the same thing. This is good. More test availability at airports is better, even better would be a
coordinated strategy conducted with the TSA.
Number three: Indoor dining increases the risk of COVID-19 infection. This was a study that showed that adults with positive COVID test were twice as likely to have recently eaten indoors at a restaurant. There might be causality issues with this study. We don’t know. It doesn’t really matter. We all know that indoors is less safe than outdoors. Indoors without a mask is less safe than indoors with a mask. Indoor dining is not a safe activity right now.
Number four: More countries promoting tourism during the pandemic. This is understandable. There are countries out there that depend on tourism for their entire economy. For example, Maldives is coming out with an actual loyalty program for travelers for the whole country. Travel to Maldives and you’re in their loyalty program. You can earn points. It’s not clear yet what those points will earn you but it is sort of a groundbreaking idea. Nevertheless, maybe not the best time to be rolling that out.
Number five: Denver airport created its own COVID-19 app. It’s pretty cool too. It allows you to take trains from the main terminal to your terminal with fewer passengers on it and it allows you to schedule a TSA check for within a 15-minute window. Now when airports are busy that’s pretty cool so I like it. The only thing is if every airport and every state and some cities have their own apps, we’re all going to be overburdened. Clearly, this needs to be coordinated.
Number six: Helsinki airport is using COVID-sniffing dogs. How cool is that? And apparently, they have been shown to be almost 100% effective in tests. Well they’re now rolling them
out and are actually operating in the airport. Dubai is already doing this and we’re doing tests in the United States and in other countries. At first, I thought this was not very realistic to roll out widely but apparently, the dogs learn quite quickly how to do this and they’re very effective at it so I do think this could be used in the medium term.
Number seven: And last, President Trump is infected with COVID-19. This is the big news that everybody’s going to hear when they wake up in the morning. And it probably won’t affect the travel industry very much in the very short term.
For more travel updates, subscribe to our YouTube Channel.