Return to the Airways

Posted on 05/06/2021

Wednesday, April 28, 2021: First Flight in 18 months
Today as fully vaccinated travelers, my wife Joan and I took our first flight in 18 months.
We got up early and excitedly departed for PHL to start the journey to Punta Cana for an industry event honoring our continued support in ALG Vacations and our client's choice to use CK Tours for their travel needs around the world.
The first thing that hit me was how many people are back flying around the country and the Caribbean. Every gate was packed, but it was also painfully obvious how few business travelers were on the road. A somber reminder of how far we still have to go in the fight against COVID.
It was amazing to see the number of families hitting the airways. The largest percentage of travelers consisted of Seniors over 60, roughly 60 percent of travelers in the airport. I can only imagine how packed the airport will be on Sunday when we return.
If you didn't know, masks are required from the airport entrance to exiting the airport in the Dominican Republic.
Our flights today are on American Airlines who has limitations on what construes a mask. Bandannas, scarfs, and gaiter neck wraps do not qualify as acceptable masking; American Airlines will give you a mask if you typically use this type of protection. American also requires your mask to cover your nose at all times when not eating or drinking.
I'm happy to get out there again; it was great to whisk off to a beautiful resort and enjoy a slice of life we have missed in the last 18 months.
Flying with a mask was not difficult; the dry air on the plane made wearing a mask easy for a traveler who uses glasses, with no fogging issues. On our flight, we had no travelers abusing the mask mandate; everyone was just happy to be going to the Dominican Republic.
Our return trip home was a similar experience on Sunday, with an unfortunate 2-hour delay for a maintenance check.
One important caveat is a Covid-19 test is required to return to the USA when you leave the country. In our case, the resort provided our testing and provided the required paperwork needed to return home. If you stay in a location that does not provide the required testing, your travel advisor can assist you in getting the required testing to return.
In closing, we see having a COVID vaccine as an essential part of your quest to See The World again. There have always been countries that have required certain vaccinations for you to travel to these fantastic destinations. The vaccines are necessary for your safety and the residents of your destination. So getting a Covid-19 vaccine will be a similar but more widely required stipulation to enter most countries.
Kenneth Keefer