Traveling this summer? Get safety tips from an infectious disease expert
EL PASO, Texas (KVIA) -- As summer continues, many may be eager to head out-of-town and take a vacation. A local infectious disease specialist with Texas Tech Physicians of El Paso said it is important to be aware of the risks.
"Every way of traveling has its own particular risks," Dr. Armando Meza said. "When you travel via airway, or any kind of system where other people are with you, the potential risk for exposure increases."
Dr. Meza said traveling by plane can include be risky due to close contact with others and exposure to contaminated surfaces. Road trips have risks too, especially when it comes to stopping at public restrooms where surfaces may be contaminated.
Dr. Meza recommends closely adhering to safe practices of social distancing, wearing a face covering and washing your hands after touching surfaces that others might also have touched.
When it comes to where you're staying, Dr. Meza said he's more concerned about areas where people gather, such as hotel lobbies, rather than hotel rooms.
"The first question before you even decide to travel is, do you really need to do it? If you don't have to do this activity that increases your risk of exposure then you might want to think about it," Dr. Meza said. "You just need to enhance the awareness that your level of exposure will increase because you are now interacting with people that you don't know anything about."
Several states currently have travel restrictions in place for out-of-state visitors, including New Mexico, which has imposed a 14-day quarantine for non-essential workers visiting the state. Some states also have mask mandates in place.