NICOLE MARIE NG
Associate Creative Director
NYC and LA
Length of trip:
Reason for travel:
What were your biggest concerns before going on the trip?
That I’d miss out on something and wouldn’t be allowed to fly. There were so many forms to fill in and things to do pre-departure. My travel partner and I kept an Excel sheet to track all the things we had to do, but even then it felt like we were discovering new things that had to be done every couple of days. I was also afraid that my pre-flight test would turn up positive and I’d have to cancel the trip.
Can you share your top tips for those who are considering traveling in the future to ensure a relatively stress-free experience?
1.Remember to bring your passport to the clinic when you take your pre-flight ART. I found minmed.sg clinics more helpful as they deal with a high volume of similar traveller requests and were able to give me more information than my regular neighborhood clinic.
2. Double mask and bring hand sanitiser wherever you go. You might want to consider getting a mask strap/ lanyard as well. They’re particularly handy on the plane where you find yourself needing to take off and put on your mask more frequently.
3. This might only apply to those travelling to the USA, but look out for free Covid-19 testing tents. These tents can usually be found close to tourist hotspots and can be used for your pre-flight test. It will save you a lot of money as tests in the US can cost US$190 for an ART. Make sure your results are sent to you digitally — someone on my flight had written results and she was asked to take another test at the airport hours before we were supposed to take off.
What surprised you the most about traveling at a time when we are learning to live with Covid-19?
In New York and Los Angeles, it’s compulsory to wear masks in public transportation, shops, restaurants, and theaters, but it’s not strictly enforced. Shops keep a stack of masks for people who come in without one and will kindly ask customers to put their masks on if they want to continue browsing.
Can you tell us the contents of your carry-on luggage to ensure a safe trip?
While you don’t get a hot towel on the plane anymore, my airline (SIA) gave us care packs that came with hand sanitizer, wet wipes, and an extra mask. It covers the basics, but I’d bring along extra wet wipes to wipe down high-touch surfaces on the plane, a good hand moisturizer for all that hand sanitizer you’ll be using (I’m a fan of Kiehl’s Ultimate Strength Hand Salve), and extra cloth masks to help keep your face warm and protected from the cold, dry recirculated air.