With the world locking down and isolating, does it seem an odd time to be discussing travel? I totally understand why travel, per se, is not top of mind for you or anyone else right now. But with the time lots of us have on our hands, I want to spend a few minutes explaining why travel is pretty high on the list of things we might contemplate for a few moments.
Firstly, some of our best memories are of travel. The vacations we took as children with our parents, the trips we have experienced with our own families and friends.
Humans are a pilgrim species. Travel is a part of more than our culture, it is embedded in our very DNA. Travel requires us to endure some discomfort, it teaches us tolerance, patience and perseverance.
There is indeed a spiritual aspect to travel. Though travel is outwardly about transportation, a crossing of borders, lodging and logistics, every journey somehow has an internal component as well, as though some of the borders crossed are interior to our psyche. We long for a horizon that moves one step away from us as quickly as we take a step forward. Yet, when we gaze inward, we find that same horizon there. There is something about travel that involves a defiance of the physical act of travel as though we are participating in a quest for understanding and knowledge as much as accruing mileage.
Now, as we find ourselves largely homebound, perhaps it is a good time to evaluate the importance of travel to our psyche, to what it has meant to us in the past to what it will mean to us as things normalize. One way to do so is to use travel to distract us a bit from the day to day routines we are lapsing into in the much smaller world of our homes, and to use the technologies and media to our advantage to visit the world virtually. So for your digital travel adventures over the next few weeks, let me suggest a few of the best opportunities I have encountered as of late:
It’s a big world and we have seen so little of it. Stopping is somehow inconceivable.
Many of you have been asking about your upcoming travel plans. I want to assist you with your questions, but first, a few words about more important matters.
We find ourselves in interesting times, where much of the normal functioning of our daily lives seems out of order. However, there are also a great many certainties. While we are all engaged in our various pursuits to earn a living and raise our families, we are also neighbors and friends. I want to say I am here for you. Things will at some point return to normal, we will get on with the routine we sometimes complain about but for which we are now a little nostalgic. Until then, know beyond being your “travel agent,” you and I are neighbors, friends and family. As we move through the next few weeks, be strong and maintain your conviction in those things that have always sustained you, whether that be your faith, your family, your pets or your own sense of integrity. We will all get through this together.
Stay informed, but give yourself a break from the 24 hour news cycle. Here are a couple of good resources for information:
Coronavirus Information Center CDC https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html
World Health Organization https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public
World Health Organization Q&A https://www.who.int/news-room/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses
Now, about those travel plans. Travel suppliers have all been modifying the cancellation policies to assist passengers, waiving fees and penalties for changes. If you had plans about which you have questions, please reach out to me.
A few of you have also inquired about future travel plans. Please reach out to me at any time to discuss and I will provide you with any information you need. As the travel industry regains momentum, there will no doubt be many great opportunities, we can discuss as you feel ready.
If there is anything I can do for you over the coming weeks, or if you just want to check in and talk, know I am here for you. We all want to practice a sound “social distancing” as the medical profession calls it, but that does not mean social disconnection. Stay informed and stay safe. If you need anything, we are a phone call away.
Hang in there, Be strong. Take care of yourself and your loved ones, have faith, and wash your hands!
Brook Bramley is a travel agent and the owner of TripBoutiq. She loves to share her passion for travel and exploring the world!