New York is probably one of the most magical places in the world… even during Covid. For the first time in a year and a half I hopped on a plane last week and took a trip to the Big Apple. Travel does look differently in 2021, however I can say my first travel experience was smooth sailing! Here’s what I learned along the way:
- BOOKING YOUR COVID TEST: Every country and state for that matter has different COVID-19 restrictions and different prerequisites before travelling, so I suggest looking that up prior to booking your flight. If you need a PCR- negative COVID test, download the Maple App. There, you sign-up and create a Switch Health Portal. After paying $150.00, someone will “live” chat with you to assist you in booking your COVID-19 test at the closest/ most convenient clinic for you to visit. Keep in mind that you need to book this test, latest, 72 hours in advance of your flight. After you go take your COVID-19 test, they will upload the results on your Switch Health Portal. I was lucky and received mine the same day that I took my test. Screenshot your results just in case you have problems with your log-in when you are at the airport. When you arrive at the airport, before you even check-in, you will need to show your negative results.
- AIRPORT: After showing your negative results to the attendant, you will check your bags and then go through security. However, prior to going through the security scan, you will stand in front of what looks like a webcam, where they will take your temperature. Everything else following is EXACTLY the same! Restaurants and coffee shops are open. You are required to wear your mask at all times, unless you are eating or drinking– then it is expected that you are socially distant from others.
- PLANE: You are required to wear a mask on the plane at all times, unless you are eating or drinking. I mean at this point — it’s assumed everyone on the flight is healthy… hopefully!
- BOOKING MY COVID TEST IN NYC: Great news here– NYC COVID-19 tests are free! Keep in mind that they need to be valid again 72 hours upon your arrival back into Canada. You can book your appointment on this website which again will act as a portal for you to access your negative COVID-19 test results. I received my results the same day I did my test, however you should leave enough buffer time for yourself in case they don’t come through until the following day. Again, I suggest screenshotting your results (you can never be too safe).
- COMING BACK INTO CANADA: First download the app ArriveCAN. You will need to have your negative COVID-19 test results on hand when you enter the airport. Afterwards, you will go through customs and security as you normally would. After grabbing your luggage, you will approach another line where you will provide your account information and flight info. They will give you a COVID-19 test package and be asked to walk into a cubicle where you will meet a nurse who will administer the test for you. You should receive your test results on the Switch Health Portal the following day! When I had to line up for this test at the airport, the line wasn’t long at all! I would say that it’s an additional 15-20 minutes tacked on to your time at the airport.
Hope this was helpful and wish you all safe, easy and wonderful travels abroad!
If you’re wondering, here are some of the incredible spots that I dined at in NYC: