Where to Travel: Countries Safe for Travel in 2021
Is it safe to travel again?
People are carefully looking to travel again, as news of countries reopening for tourism and vaccine distribution brings us hope. All eyes are now on the tourism industry’s next steps, whether and how they’ll be proactive in courting anxious travellers.
What are the criteria for a COVID-19 safe country?
In determining which non-EU countries are deemed safe in terms of COVID-19 transmission and containment, the European Council has enacted three sets of criteria as follows:
- Epidemiological criteria. A country must demonstrate its ability to significantly decrease and stabilize the spread of the coronavirus for a sustained period of time. Indicative to this are reduced cases of new infections, hospitalizations as well as the number of patients being treated in intensive care.
- Sufficient health system capacity. A country must have adequate occupancy rates for Intensive Care Units, which among others entails sufficient numbers of hospital beds, required pharmaceutical products as well as qualified and sufficient numbers of medical staff to care for infected patients.
- Appropriate monitoring capacity. A country must have proper testing centres to hold large-scale testing capacity to detect and monitor cases of infection. Furthermore, the testing facilities must be complemented with adequate contact tracing capabilities to isolate and hinder the further spread of infections.
Where to travel?
Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection published an article in November 2020, listing 10 countries around the world that will be safest for travellers in 2021. This data is from the research that they have done in the last three years and from information from the Global Peace Index and the State Department’s own travel safety ratings. Also, they looked into how well countries have handled their pandemic responses from the OECD, Pew Research Center, Our World in Data, and YouGov. They are the following:
- New Zealand
Note: Since COVID-related travel restrictions change all the time, they recommend to visit the post for updates.
After the year we’ve all had, it’s safe to say we all deserve a holiday this 2021. With millions of cases confirmed worldwide, sure, we need to navigate carefully over the next few months, but with travel restrictions lifting, we can plan to squeeze in a vacation somewhere. Just don't forget to pack your fashionable face mask and some hand sanitiser before you go.