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Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Explained: Do I need to take precautions at hotels if I’m vaccinated?

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the risk of COVID-19 is low if you’re fully vaccinated, and that you can resume indoor and outdoor activities without wearing a mask or social distancing.

By: AP |
July 9, 2021 5:15:08 pm
Most U.S. hotel chains took measures during the pandemic to reduce the risk of infections, and those changes remain in effect. Many hotels offer contactless check-in, prepackaged breakfast items instead of open buffets and more frequent cleaning of common areas. (AP photo)

Do I need to take precautions at hotels if I’m vaccinated?

Most people won’t need to, but it depends on your situation.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the risk of COVID-19 is low if you’re fully vaccinated, and that you can resume indoor and outdoor activities without wearing a mask or social distancing.

But if you have health issues, the CDC says to talk to your doctor about the need to continue taking precautions. Parents of young children may also want to be more careful until their kids are vaccinated. Guidance might vary by country as well, depending on local vaccination and infection rates.

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“Hotels are safe, but I think there are individual personal factors that may sway you one way or another,” says Dr. Soniya Gandhi, associate chief medical officer at Cedars-Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital.

To help you decide your comfort level, Gandhi suggests looking at infection and vaccination rates in the place you’re visiting. If cases are low, you should feel more confident about activities that could put you in close contact with others, like dining at a hotel restaurant or using the gym.

Most U.S. hotel chains took measures during the pandemic to reduce the risk of infections, and those changes remain in effect. Many hotels offer contactless check-in, prepackaged breakfast items instead of open buffets and more frequent cleaning of common areas.

Some hotels and inns, including the MGM Resort chain, have also upgraded their air filtration systems and even added individual air purifiers to some guest rooms.

If you’re concerned, call ahead to see what protocols the hotel has in place.

Marriott, Hyatt, IHG Hotels & Resorts and other hotel operators have removed mask mandates for fully vaccinated guests at their U.S. hotels. Hilton’s mask rules vary by location, but employees are still required to wear masks.

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