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Spring break during a pandemic: A doctor's advice on staying safe if you're traveling

Whether you're headed to the beach or staying local, a Cleveland doctor weighs in on how your family can stay safe.

CLEVELAND — We're getting into spring break season. Although the CDC is recommending that we don't travel amid COVID-19 concerns, a lot of families are making some sort of travel plans.

This "Mom Minute Monday," 3News’ Maureen Kyle talked to Pediatric Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Amy Edwards from University Hospitals about the things you can do to stay safe if you do decide to travel.

Her number one recommendation is to take a “staycation” or at least stay within the state of Ohio. It can be a good opportunity to try out some places you never get around to. But if you are headed to the beach, or somewhere else out of state, she does have some advice.

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“How do you spring break as a family, with safety precautions, in what's happening today with COVID?” Maureen asks.

Dr. Edwards says your best bet is to take an old-fashioned road trip.

“We know that driving is safer than flying.”

You also need to see if there are any special restrictions or guidelines related to COVID-19 where you’re going.

“You'll have to check your quarantining and COVID testing rules for whichever state you're going to.”

Some states may even have little or no guidelines in place, but Dr. Edwards says you can still take precautions to keep yourself and your family safe.

“Even if there aren't strict rules in the area where you are, you can still work to keep yourself safe by just trying to stay away from other people and wearing your mask, especially when you're indoors.”

What about lodging? Would you be safer in a hotel or staying in a house rental like an Airbnb?

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“The nice thing about renting a condo or an Airbnb or something like that, you'll have access to a kitchen so you could grocery shop,” says Dr. Edwards.

She also suggested using contactless grocery pickup as the safest option.

“Then you can just cook in your condo or in your you rental.”

Hotels, on the other hand, have been transparent about their updated cleaning policies.  

“A lot of the hotels have published their cleaning standards for each room,” says Dr. Edwards.

But when staying in a hotel, you most likely won’t have access to a kitchen and will either have to order carry-out food or eat at a restaurant.

“Everything has pluses and minuses.”

If you do stay close to home this spring break, don't worry – there is an end in sight. Dr. Edwards says, she thinks it will be safe to fly by this summer or early fall.


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