Traveling Safely in a World of Ebola Outbreaks


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© 2014 Shanna Lea

You can’t stop your daily routine and work schedule because of an Ebola outbreak. You still have to earn a living and provide for your family. You may even have to travel internationally for family or work, even though traveling could be dangerous.

How to Travel Safely During Ebola Outbreak

Viruses are easily transmitted so you want to make sure you travel safely. You have to be smart about every detail of your travel itinerary. Human contact is the easiest way that any virus, especially Ebola, spreads.

During travel, you’re often elbow-to-elbow with others, so the first step is to keep as much distance between you and everyone else. It may not seem like much, but putting a briefcase or bag between you and the next person can establish a boundary. If you’re sitting, try to keep an empty seat between you and the other person. If someone sits next to you, see if you can move to a less crowded area.

Contact to Avoid

Viruses are spread through someone’s cough or sneeze droplets and also when you touch things and then touch your eyes, nose or mouth.

You have to watch your children closely to make sure they don’t put their hands in their mouths or rub their eyes.

If you must travel with children, choose a less crowded way to travel than by airplane. And before you leave on your trip, check the news for public health warnings for the area you are traveling through and to.

If there are warnings, then you’ll need to decide if the risks of traveling there are unavoidable. If you have to travel, then keep your personal safety in mind. Keep a hygiene kit with you and use it—clean off arm rests and seats with antibacterial wipes.

Maintain a distance between you and other travelers. Try to sit so your body and clothing don’t touch someone else. Don’t be worried about being perceived as rude if you don’t shake hands with a stranger who sits beside you.

You have no idea what they have touched or where they have traveled. If you have to fly, then choose first class. It may cost more, but will be less crowded.

The main thing to remember while traveling is:

  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth until you’ve thoroughly washed your hands with antibacterial soap
  • And if you notice a fellow passenger acting sick, then alert the flight attendant to see if you can move to another seat

Further reading:

Tracking Ebola Outbreaks to Protect Your Family from Danger

Ebola Outbreak—Prepare Now to Survive Later

The Hot Zone: The Terrifying True Story of the Origins of the Ebola Virus


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