How To Travel Safely? Here's a few tips to keep in mind.


Countries are starting to open their borders internationally now. In my country Malaysia, interstate travel has just been officially allowed a few weeks ago. Ya, many of my friends are very happy to be able to go back hometown to visit their age-old parents and many are also eager to take a break after a long period of lockdown. Many have been couped up in their homes for too long. To some people, restrictions and being forced to stay at home may lead to serious mental health issues, as there is no meeting of friends face to face and interaction physically. We as humans are social mammals, we need to socialize and have interaction with other humans too.  Just as we know, most animals are communal and live in packs, groups, or at least a minimum of two people as a couple. So just imagine if a person who is staying alone in the big city, during this lockdown time, life will be hard. It will even be harder if he or she lost his job. So the opening of interstate travel can enable the person at least to go back to his family in his hometown. 

Yes, we are all very happy with this start of allowing travel internally and also internationally. But the Covid 19 virus is still present around us, we have to be very cautious during our travels. Here are a few tips to keep ourselves safe: 

1. Avoid Touching - Hugs, Embracing

New norms are here. When meeting colleagues, friends, relatives, remember that Covid is still around us. So please, please, please, no hugs or kisses especially to older folks in our hometowns (kampung). We have to try to keep our distance as older folks have a weaker immune system that makes them more vulnerable. It is difficult to change our traditional way of greetings but times have changed and we have to adapt. I also forgot sometimes, and instinctively put out my hand to shake hands but have to pull back, apologize and do knuckle knocks instead!

2. Avoid crowded places eating places:

This is the first important factor to take into consideration. At a restaurant, do not go in if you see too many people inside or a long queue outside. More people means the place is more dangerous as Covid virus can be spread easily if a person with covid positive just cough or sneeze. Another danger is that some people can be carriers of Covid virus without showing any symptoms at all (asymptomatic). Even at the beach, on the road, inside shops, it is safer to walk further away anybody. For me, I would not go into restaurants or go near anywhere whenever I see that there are a lot of people. 

3. Always wear masks in public places:

Masks have become part and parcel of our daily life now. Going out of my home, my priority now is to check whether I have masks and mobile phone with me. Mobile phone is to do 'Check-in' at all the places I go, and masks are to protect myself and also others. And, mind you, it is double masks!

4. Avoid enclosed area/spaces. :

If dining, choose open-air dining (alfresco dining ). Places that are enclosed and fully aircon are not healthy as there is poor ventilation of air. When walking around, to walk on the outside in the open air instead of the inside air-conditioning interior. For example, before the pandemic of Covid, I hate to walk outside on corridors as it is very hot. But now, it is different,  I try to take every opportunity to walk outside of malls to get around. Open-air and sunshine are good for us and also the open spaces have very good ventilation. 

5. Quick and Fast: 

Wherever we go, do not linger on for too long. Be quick to do whatever you want to do, if want to buy groceries, then make a list of what is needed first. Choose, take, pay and move on. In some shops, I saw a sign with " Shh... No talking" Ha-ha, libraries everywhere now? 

6. Always carry a few food containers and food utensils in your car/luggage:

Takeaways are the safest way of eating during these pandemic times. But if we are traveling, we can't buy and take it home to eat. So the best way is to order takeaways and eat it in our car!  

7. Wash Hands Frequently:

It's like back to primary school days where teachers always reminded us to wash our hands, especially before eating. Now, we have to wash our hands not just before eating, but as frequently as possible. If there's no water, then sanitize our hand width sanitizer, always keep one in our handbags, or pockets or hand onto our trousers. I will always sanitize my hand whenever I get into my car. 

8. Choose Hotels and Time Your Schedule/itinerary well:

Best to go to lesser-known places of accommodations/hotels so as to avoid the crowd. Beaches, tourist attractions if you have to go, go on weekdays/off-peak time, or just park your car further away, and walk in the opposite direction of the crowd.  

Travel and Tourism Industry, Is just a huge part of our economy -Karen Huges

Peace and tranquility at this seaside hotel I stayed recently

Please give feedback in the comments if there are more tips for everyone to travel safely.

Once a year, go some place you have never been before - Dalai Lama


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