Despite COVID-19, travelers booking trips for something to look forward to

Wednesday, October 28, 2020
Despite COVID-19, some travelers still booking trips
Travel experts say that looking forward to a trip can be just as fun as going. With the pandemic continuing, some travelers are booking trips well in advance to have something to look forward to -- and to save money.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- California has been put back onto New York state's travel advisory list because our case positivity rate is above their threshold.

It means that if you're flying from here to New York, you'll be asked to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

But slowly people are starting to travel again and the question remains should you book a flight?

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"Yes, yes, this year has been so rough," says Courtney Alcivar. "I told my husband I need to book a flight. I need something to look forward to."

Alcivar spent just shy of a $1,000 on June flights to Dublin for her and her husband. Even her husband isn't so sure this is a great idea, Courtney has a lot of experts on her side.

She booked through Scott's Cheap Flights, so let's hear what the Scott has to say.

"People enjoy themselves on vacation, but you know where they actually enjoy the vacation even more?" Scott Keyes asks, then answers his own question: "It is the month leading up to it. It's all that time daydreaming about that beach."

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Now, you might expect Scott to say that, but he's backed up by San Francisco clinical psychologist, Dr. Andrea Zorbas.

"Planning and anticipating travel is a form of escapism, the same as we use escapism when we are watching a television show or movie or having a deep conversation with a friend," the doctor says. "To have something we can control and plan for is also very healthy."

As long as you stay safe, she says, when traveling.

United Kingdom-based travel writer, Rupert Wolfe Murray, writes about the psychology of travel. We caught up with him on a recent night while he was driving through Scotland.

He likes anticipation, but the actual escape even more.

"The best part of getting away is the moment of escape," Murray says. "I suppose you could call it that rush of freedom as you run away from your parents, from school or from jail."


USA Today is calling inexpensive travel an ironic perk of the pandemic. I asked Murray if he agrees.

"I think so, yes, but it is not something I would say very loudly because a lot of people would get very angry with me. My approach of this whole pandemic is to be respectful," he says.

Everyone we talked to agrees with that.

Again, Courtney Alcivar: "I love planning a trip. I love researching, figuring out what we are going to go see and what we are going to do."

"We don't know what the future is going to hold," Dr. Andrea Zorbas says. "So having a more positive outlook, there is really no harm in that."

"You can be booking flights nine, ten months out, giving yourself a real treat today making your current self-excited," Keyes says. "Giving yourself something to look forward to while also saying even if you are not comfortable traveling today will you be in nine months, ten months? Hopefully so."

Take a look at more stories and videos by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

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