There is no need to repeat it again: traveling in the Covid era is completely different. So the items on your packing list may also need to change.
Of course, there are the obvious things that have become of everyday use, like masks, which are mandatory everywhere, at least on the means of transportation and in common areas. Then there are the hygiene products that we have recently added to our routines, such as gloves and hand sanitizers, and there is also the thermometer.
But there are several less obvious products that you may want to bring that you probably have never prioritized before.
Here are some useful products for traveling in the Coronavirus era.
A contactless credit card
Contactless credit cards are considered one of the safest ways to pay in order to avoid contact with money and in terms of security as well. In fact, with this type of card, you won’t have to swipe your card through the same machine that everyone else has touched, and you won’t have to hand your card to another person.
Credit cards are now being designed with ‘tap-to-pay,’ which means that the card is equipped with a technology called near-field communication. You can hold your card (or your mobile wallet enabled device, such as a phone or smartwatch) close to the card reader to complete your transaction.
Many businesses, even some that had historically been cash-only, nowadays encourage customers to make contactless payments. It is, therefore, very useful to have one of these when traveling in the Covid era.
Stories - Food & Beverage - Destinations
A portable power-bank unit for your smartphone
In some places, however, it is not possible to pay by contactless credit card. For some attractions, like museums, you may need to book in advance. The same goes for some restaurants and stores that ask you to order and pay online before serving you.
This means that you smartphone is always working. A simple power bank can help you avoid unpleasant surprises, especially when finding a power point may be more difficult than it used to. The power bank is an object you can’t do without traveling in the Covid era.
A pen and a notepad
If you like those notepads and pens that you can usually find in hotel rooms, you are not lucky. If you’ve already had the chance to travel in the Covid era, you may have noticed that some hotels, including Hilton, have changed their health policies and removed a number of items from the rooms. This decision is not to be blamed (Hilton is one of the hotels that have handled the coronavirus best), but pen and paper remain useful items. For example, Hilton says that products like pens are available upon request, but calling the concierge just for a pen seems rather inconvenient.
Pen and paper are useful in the room, maybe to simply take notes while on the phone. A pen is also useful for signing credit card receipts. The Scientific Committees claim that pens are difficult to clean or disinfect, and sharing them should be discouraged. Therefore, it is much better to bring your own.
A water bottle
While specialists have stated that there is no evidence that anyone has contracted COVID-19 drinking water, some public drinking fountains have been turned off. Even if they are still on, many people don’t see them as safe. The surfaces around the fountain, including the button you touch to turn on the spigot, may be infected.
In the Covid era, it is certainly better to travel with a bottle of water, which you can fill from a safe source. Or, you could choose a plastic water bottle (even though it also has its downside: contributing to waste).
A selfie-stick to travel in the Covid era
The selfie-stick is an object often denigrated or rightly considered superfluous. The nickname ‘narcisstick’ certainly gives an idea of how many people don’t like this tool.
However, the selfie stick is safer than asking someone else to take your couple or family photo. No one wants a stranger to touch their smartphone or camera and vice versa. And your arm isn’t long enough to get a great photo, despite your selfie skills. So, to put everyone and everything in the frame, it’s time to get back to self-sufficient photography.
Traveling in the Covid era has introduced new urgencies, so ignore the selfie-sticks haters; get a contactless form of payment and, why not, leave room in your suitcase for a roll of toilet paper. Traveling in the Covid era has changed, so your packing list should too. Even better if you have a modular backpack that can adapt to various situations.