Holiday travels: 2020 vs. the past 

By: McKenna Nutter

COVID-19 has had a large impact on many aspects of everyone’s life. As the holiday season has recently come to an end, many of us are able to look back on the differences between this year and the years past.

The difference, even in the media, was large. While most years we are encouraged to spend time and gather with our friends and family, this year was very different. We had been warned that it was risky to go see our families, and that we should make other arrangements, such as the highly suggested virtual gatherings.

Another major difference, this recent holiday season, was the restrictions and lack in travel. We all know that the airports are filled each year with millions of people flying out to see families, and the streets and highways are filled with cars packed for the road with people driving to see their loved ones. However, the year of 2020 has no doubt been different.

Each of the airlines and airports have had their own pandemic restrictions, and they all vary from one to another. In many states, there are mandates of their own. For example, in Maine, a visitor must self-quarantine for 14 days unless they have had a negative COVID test result within the last 72 hours. Every state has different regulations, and some have none at all but, no matter the state, over the holiday season, there has definitely been an increase in cases. 

Though there has been a major difference in holiday travel this year, the holidays have seemed to increase the travel. TSA data has shown that during a single week, right before the holidays, over 1 million people had been screened each day. This number may not sound too bad during a normal year, in fact it sounds pretty good, but in a year when we are encouraged to stay home and stay safe, this is a large number. 

As predicted, the surge in the number of cases, and the number of deaths, after the holidays was incredibly high. Of all the states in America, Arizona was definitely a hot spot, and Arizona is only one part of the 50 state nation. After the holiday fun was over, the U.S. was averaging more than 246,000 new cases per day! Not to mention the number of deaths was evened out between 3,000 and 4,000 per day. 

This surge in numbers was expected, and though the experts had continually encouraged us to stay home, the warnings may not have been completely ignored, but they went unfollowed by many. 

Hopefully, with the number of new vaccines going out, and the set-up of many vaccination sites, we will be able to pull this surge back into control.

 

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