Many tourists accept stuck, decided to stay in a strange place because they feel safer to go home.
When the pandemic peaked in many countries around the world, countries simultaneously closed, many airlines canceled flights to prevent the spread of nCoV , many tourists rushed home. Besides, there are those who decide to wander abroad, accepting “stuck” in the country they have just visited with an uncertain future. Insider had conversations with visitors to find out the reason for their decision.
Know you’re safe while staying at
Samantha Tropper, from North Carolina, USA. She began implementing dust travel plans to South and Central America from 2/1. When it arrived in Ecuador, it closed the border for 15 days from March 12. Therefore, the Tropper could not go to the next point, Peru and had to make a choice: stay or find a flight home.
At the hotel, she witnessed the guests trying to leave. At that time, Ecuador had suspended public transport, which made Tropper unable to take the 3-hour bus to the airport. She also heard about canceled flights, tourists stuck at the airport. If her flight were to suffer from the same situation, she would not have a place to stay as Ecuador’s newly promulgated rules would not allow motels and hotels to accept any new guests. The move is part of a series of government actions to stop the pandemic. “The airport is probably a highly contagious place for nCoV,” the female traveler said .
Most tourists say the situation is changing so quickly that it is hard to know what the best decision is: staying or returning.
She also witnessed the French tourists in her hotel trying to fly home, and they encountered problems. Afterwards, she looked out into the river from the door of the hotel room, which had a beautiful view and said to herself, “Wait, why are you hurrying home?” This travel restriction will last for 15 days, but she also has no work waiting at home. Previously, she worked in a bar but now closed for nCoV. The only thing that forced her to return was the university, but her semester began in August.
And Tropper decided to stay. She feels blessed to have a great place to stay. A number of projects have assisted her, and helped Tropper pay for accommodation at the hotel. She feels very comfortable here, whether the embassy keeps appealing to citizens to return home, or will be stuck indefinitely. “Although I didn’t know what was going to happen, I still felt that staying was the better option.”
Currently, she spends most of her time in a hammock reading a book and becomes friends with the hotel owner, as she is the only guest remaining. She felt “incredibly safe”.
Talking about the attitude of the local people towards the pandemic, she said: “People are worried but not too afraid to go to store horrors like many other countries. Everyone is calm, unite to go through the pandemic “.
The risk of infection when returning home is higher
Female tourist Leslie Aimone, from California, extends her tour for over a month, or longer. 1/31, she left home to Costa Rica and scheduled to return on 3/4. By mid-March, things began to change rapidly. The country declared a state of emergency, closing its border with foreigners on March 18. Aimone’s friends couldn’t come here to visit her anymore, but she didn’t want to go home either. Because going home now is more risky than safe.
Leslie Aimone lives in a small house in the countryside of Costa Rica.
Aimone is in Playa Zanculo, a remote part of the country. To return to San Diego, California, she had to spend hours on a bus to San Jose, then fly through Los Angeles International Airport. And this makes it very easy for her to get sick. In the event that the trip ended safely, she also faced nCoV infection again and this risk is quite high when the place where she lives has more than 1,500 cases. Meanwhile, the whole country of Costa Rica has just over 500. When making a decision to stay, female visitors feel lighter.
Aimone soon realized the fact that she could be stuck in Costa Rica for months, when the last flight she knew to return was March 31. Many airlines have no plans to resume operations until early May. “I don’t think any decision will be perfect. But this is the right decision,” she said.
At Playa Zancudo, people are taking serious social distance. Aimone is in a small house alone. In that short time, she created a Fanpage so that everyone in town could connect with each other, making her feel happy and warm. People were very welcoming and excited about Aimone’s project.
Health places stuck higher ranked at home
Leigh Lagrosa lives in New York with her mother and stepfather but on February 8, she went to Colombia to travel. At that time, she had no concept of pandemic. Covid-19 was still a distant thing, she had heard of it but was confident that “she was not near to worry about the trip”.
“What I can do now is wait every day, week after week,” the female traveler said.
The initial trip to Colombia by American tourists lasted 3 weeks. She went to Cartagena to meet her father and then began exploring the Amazon forest. On his last day in the Amazon, Lagrosa found a sick cat and decided to extend the stay to help the animal recover. Explaining the action, she said: “I’m still working while traveling. I’m flexible and have savings. I also have a heart and I can’t let this kitten die.”
Later, she took the cat to Bogotá and canceled the flight to Florida, then from Florida to New York. Before that, she always wanted to spend time in a Spanish-speaking country to improve her language. And she needed a reason to stay. This time, it was the cat.
When deciding to stay, she began to hear about the announcement of US border closures. At this moment, she realized that things were getting serious. She called friends and family for advice. Everyone said she should stay. At that time, she just thought that traveling between airports is not a good idea. It can be a “very good” place of infection. Moreover, her stepfather and mother are over 60 years old. Therefore, she could not decide that everything was only for her own benefit.
Finally, female tourists stay in Colombia. The Colombian government has taken early precautions to prevent nCoV and Bogotá where she lives are in isolation on March 20. “I feel safer here,” she said. What makes her feel comforted is that the US government still has weekly humanitarian flights, bringing citizens back home.
Lagrosa said that in the midst of wondering whether to stay or stay, she sought information about health care services in Colombia based on WHO rankings. And Colombia is higher than America. Moreover, the hospitals here are still not overcrowded, the area where she lives is considered “relatively wealthy” of the city. She believes that she will be taken care of if she gets sick.