As vaccination numbers continue to climb and experts gain a better understanding of COVID-19, more industries are adapting. Tropical resorts in Hawaii and the Bahamas have started to host visitors in “resort bubbles,” requiring travelers to complete a series of tests before full admittance.
BUT ARE THESE TRAVEL OPTIONS SAFE?
That depends on your comfort level and a resort’s adherence to the rules. According to Forbes, each resort that offers this travel package may have different rules, but the gist of each experience is the same. Each resort still requires masks, unless the visitor is in their room, dining, drinking, sitting at the beach or pool, or swimming.
Then, at check-in, sanitation and temperature checks are required. After the checks, tourists are directed to an on-site clinic, where nurses ask a few questions and perform a rapid COVID-19 test. Guests are then sent to their rooms, where they must await the results. If the test comes back negative, the tourist will receive a key card and can commence with their vacation. (Some resorts set the price of lodging so that if test results are positive, then the required flight home is part of the original cost, so it’s already paid for.)
Other resorts require visitors to wear tracking bracelets for 72 hours upon arrival and a negative test result. After 72 hours and a second negative test, the guest is then permitted to leave the hotel grounds. This allows the hotel chain to track potential COVID-19 cases.
These resort bubbles offer a potentially safe alternative for travel, but they don’t come without risks. A traveler could potentially contract COVID-19 while en route to the destination, and resorts that allow guests to leave the premises risk exposure. Furthermore, these precautions may not be 100% effective.
However, if you are vaccinated, have COVID-19 antibodies, or feel safe to travel, resort bubbles offer a travel alternative that can be safer than traditional vacation stays. Perhaps no industry was hit harder during the COVID-19 pandemic than the travel and hospitality industry, but with the addition of resort bubbles, the travel industry looks to return to a new normal.