By: Nicole Frankel
Middle and high school students are eagerly anticipating the end of the school year so that they can begin their long-awaited summer vacations. Many people choose to spend their summers in a variety of ways, including vacationing, attending summer camp, doing community service, working, or attending a teen tour. Individuals aged 13 and up can partake in a number of teen tours, many of which aim to bring teenagers from all over the world together to share unforgettable experiences. Teen tours usually include visiting various countries and/or states, but this summer’s itineraries might be a little different due to the pandemic.
Borders were locked at the start of COVID-19, and no one was permitted to fly. However, things have improved to the point that airports are reopening, and travel is once again possible. Despite the fact that travel is permitted, new regulations have been imposed on travel that still can pose some difficulties when traveling across state or country lines. One might wonder how COVID allows for teen tours, and many teen tour companies have been working hard to be able to provide safe trips this summer that will include mandatory rules throughout the entirety of the trip. As of right now, teen tours are still allowed and will be running this upcoming summer. A COVID-19 committee at one teen tour company, West Coast Connections, meets on a regular basis and consults with their Infectious Disease Physician to help prepare for a successful summer. A mandatory covid test, the teen’s medical history, and a health screening about the teen’s current health are all required prior to your teen tour with West Coast Connections. As soon as one arrives, their temperature will be taken, a new health screening will be sent out that needs to be completed, and hand sanitizer will be provided for the duration of the trip. Each participant will need to bring their own face masks. Masks would be required to be worn in public spaces, automobiles, and other places where social distancing is impossible or as defined by local authorities and destination collaborators.
To some, this may render the entire teen tour pointless, while others may not be bothered, but the real question is should parents allow their kids to go on these teen tours and travel the world during the ongoing pandemic? The answer is different for everybody. As safe as the teen tour companies are trying to make their getaways and as they are taking all of the precautions they can, there is always the possibility of something happening that is beyond their control, Covid related or otherwise. If one’s parents allow them to go on a teen tour, it is definitely something to consider as it sounds like a great opportunity for the summer!
Photo courtesy of Rein Tours.