WATCH — Tips on travelling for March Break if you’re worried about coronavirus

Isabelle MacNeil
Story by Isabelle MacNeil and CBC Kids News • 2020-03-12 08:17
UPDATE:On Friday, March 13, the federal government recommended Canadians avoid all non-essential travel outside Canada until further notice. Like many Canadians, Isabelle MacNeil's family cancelled their trip to Mexico.

Avoid countries like China and northern Italy

It’s time to put away my winter boots and put on some sandals!

It may still winter in Canada, but I’m headed to Mexico with my family and some friends for March Break next week.

Sunscreen, bathing suits and hand sanitizer, check!

Hand sanitizer? I’m nervous about getting the coronavirus, so I’m going to be prepared.

Some of the things I’m bringing to stay safe in Mexico: (Check out the video above to find out what the mystery item is!)

Hand sanitizer, sunscreen, disinfectant wipes, tissues, hat, sunglasses

(Isabelle MacNeil/CBC)

School trips across the country are cancelled and a lot of families are second-guessing their plans as the cases of coronavirus go up.

But our trip is still on because the government hasn’t imposed travel restrictions on people going to Mexico.

As long as my family is healthy, we're going.

There are a lot of myths about the coronavirus out there. Check out this video about busting myths.

What can you do to prepare?

Here are a few tips:

1) Trust reliable sources

Websites like the Government of Canada (that end in .gc.ca) have up-to-date information.

You can find out what countries are affected, what the risk is in Canada and what to do to keep from getting sick.

They list the countries that have health notices (like China, Iran and northern Italy) and the countries that are probably best to avoid.

A list of countries affected by the coronavirus, as of March 11, 2020. (WHO)

The WHO (World Health Organization) also has the latest information on the number of confirmed cases in each country.

2) Wash your hands

It’s important to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds.

Use hand sanitizer if there’s no soap.

Use tissues and not your sleeve (gross!) and avoid touching your eyes.

A person in a hazmat suit from head to toe sprays the inside of an airplane.

Some airlines, like Vietnam Airlines, are disinfecting empty planes before passengers get on. (Kham/File photo/Reuters)

Masks won’t keep you from getting sick, but they can be worn if you have symptoms of coronavirus.

Wiping down surfaces with disinfectants is a good idea, but I’m not getting too worked about it.

Dr. Scott Halperin, an infectious disease specialist at the IWK Health centre, a children’s hospital in Halifax, says we don’t need to go crazy.

He said basic hygiene is best.

“Do not rub your eyes or your nose or put your hands into your mouth after you've touched surfaces until you've sanitized them,” he said.

I’ll wash my hands before I eat anything.

Want more tips on preventing the coronavirus? Check these out.

3) Don’t panic

While we’re hearing a lot of stories about sporting events being cancelled in parts of the world, it’s important to remember that kids who get the coronavirus are not getting super sick.

In fact, no kid anywhere in the world has died from COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

A woman wearing a mask waits at a railway station in Rome. Italy has imposed restrictions on all its residents to control the spread of the coronavirus. (Tiziana FABI AFP via Getty Images)

“COVID-19 is not particularly concerning to young children at this point,” said Halerpin.

Most kids who have COVID-19 only get a cold.

Still, kids can spread it, and it’s important to protect others.

Things can change quickly, so I will keep looking at these sites for information throughout my trip.

Check out the video below to see how I prepare for my trip, and make sure to check back in in a few weeks to see how it all went!

Top photo credits: Shutterstock, Tiziana Fabi/AFP via Getty Images

 

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About the Contributor

Isabelle MacNeil
Isabelle MacNeil
CBC Kids News Contributor
Isabelle MacNeil is a creative and ambitious grade 10 student from Dartmouth N.S. with a love for soccer, volleyball, acting and business. Isabelle has been having so much fun working as a contributor for CBC Kids News since September 2018. Isabelle loves reporting stories and hopes to inspire others as a positive role model and believes that giving kids a voice is more important than ever.

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