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'I’m not too worried.' Michiganders prepare for holiday travels despite rise in COVID-19 case numbers

covid travel
Posted at 9:39 AM, Dec 21, 2021

(WXYZ) — More than 600,000 people will be traveling through the Metro Detroit airport this week and many travelers are excited to take on the sky once again.

But as the Omicron variant spreads, many travelers are starting to take extra precautions before they head out.

Dozens of people have lined up at testing sites around the country to get tested before traveling. Luckily, experts say planes are much safer now because of their ventilation systems.

"Yeah, The good news is we know that planes themselves are pretty safe." Dean of Brown University Public Health Dr. Ashisha Jha said. "What I advise family, friends who are traveling over the holidays is, obviously it would be really helpful if they were fully vaccinated and boosted. That I think is the most important thing."

She says the second most important thing is wearing a high-quality mask.

"Other places don't have such great ventilation, and you want to make sure you keep yourself safe. Travel is doable and safe, but we have to take care of ourselves."

AAA estimates more than 109 million Americans will be traveling this season. That's up nearly 34% from last year.

Some travelers are worried about the new COVID variant, others not so much.

"I had a niece that was going to come up here to visit and we canceled that," one resident said. " Had friends that were like ‘let’s have a little gathering,’ and already got texts that said ‘maybe next year.’”

“I’m not too worried because I got the booster shot. I’m just about to travel, so it’s a requirement to get the test,” another said.