A year ago this week my kids’ school shut down for Covid “at least through Spring Break.” I guess they were technically right, I just didn’t expect it to be Spring Break 2021
--Christopher Miller, @chrizmillr
Guys: spring break is almost here.
And, yes, we know, it’s still weird out there in the world and the idea of a vacation may seem too good to be true. But, if you’re anything like us, it’s also getting real tough to think about sitting out a second consecutive spring break entirely. So, with that in mind, we thought a round-up of all things spring break-related would be a good use of this week’s Snack Break. What could a spring vacation look like this year? Where could you go, what’s safe to do, what’s safe enough and what’s really out of the question? And, if you feel better continuing to lay low, how might you pass the time? We’ve tried to get those questions – and more – answered for you below.
What is Spring Break Going to look like?
First let’s jump into this New York Times piece that suggests while spring break travel may be “showing signs of life again,” it’s likely going to look a little different than it often has in the past. Think: older crowds (the vaccinated set), visits more spread out over time (because virtual work, school and, well, everything, makes that possible), and more restrictions on raucous parties (just say no to super spreader events). Other trends? Drive-to destinations closer to home, private vacation rentals and multi-generational family trips. Although the Centers for Disease Control is still recommending that Americans avoid non-essential travel, and some colleges and universities have canceled the traditional week off entirely or swapped it for a few days off here and there throughout the semester, spring breakers will still look for some ways to have their fun in the sun. This story provides a good number of ideas on how to do that, too.
As does this National Geographic article tailored to families hoping to get away. Here you will find more advice on how to safely make the most of your time off this spring. Suggestions include: road trips / RV trips, checking into motels instead of hotels, keeping your travel pod small (immediate family is best), planning for unexpected expenses and more.
What are the safest options?
Now that the travel inspiration is (hopefully) in full effect, you might want to have a look at this piece from the Washington Post, which rates the safety level of different kinds of trips. You won’t be surprised to learn that traveling to party is the riskiest bet out there. Red light all the way. Then there are a bunch of yellow light options. If you want the green light, go camping.
So, camping sounds like a lot of work?
Sure, sure, you say, thanks for the tip. But, if after this longest-year-ever-in-the-history-of-long-years camping sounds like kind of a lot of work and you just really need someone else to do all the heavy lifting (and prepping, cooking, cleaning, etc) for you instead? We get it. Check out this run-down on some of the best glamping options across the country. See? You can sleep under the stars and eat your cake, too.
Camping, glamping, shmamping, you’re just not having it? No problem! Check out more family- and covid-friendly spring break travel ideas here or dig into this list of some of the most remote vacation rentals you can find across the U.S.
Road trip, anyone??
If you’ve landed on the idea of loading the kiddos into the car for a road trip this spring, don’t buckle the seat belts without reading this LA Times story first. It’s actually full of thoughtful and useful ideas for how to safely and happily drive hundreds of miles during a pandemic. Yes, you need lots of hand sanitizer. And yes, you need toilet seat covers. You also need sleep. And the kids need parks or pools to blow off steam. And everyone needs the trip to be more rigorously planned out than the same such adventure ever was before. Such is 2021 life.
But where should we go?
There are the usual suspects of course – a southern Utah journey to see some of the country’s most beautiful desert landscapes, a coastal adventure, wine country, maybe you head out to see the cherry blossoms in Washington, D.C. But you might also consider a few slightly more off-the-beaten path destinations such as Hudson, New York, Cincinnati, Ohio, and Loudoun County, Virginia. Sound interesting? We thought they might…
What are the Covid travel safety measures?
Finally, don’t leave home without reviewing the covid travel safety measures that experts recommend most. Although more and more people are getting vaccinated every day and the numbers of cases seem to be dropping nationally, we’re not out of the covid woods yet. Not for a while, probably. That makes the comprehensive advice here from the Mayo Clinic an especially useful read before you go. It covers overall safety considerations, as well as those specifically for air, car and other ground travel, renting vacation homes, packing lists, testing and more.
Oh, snap! Wait, you’re not leaving home at all?? Cool, cool. Safest bet yet. Here are seven ideas for seven days of home-based, staycation, family-friendly fun. Built in, without the kids ever probably noticing, are opportunities to expand their brains, too. Armchair adventures for the serious win.