Traveling during a pandemic

2020 has been a year for the record books. With the outbreak of the coronavirus, often referred to as Covid-19, travel has come to a complete stop. Of course, this depends on the different countries and regions in the world as well as different states here within the United States. During the summer months of the year, it seemed like everything was shut down and you couldn’t even fly anywhere even if you wanted. However, towards the end of the year things seemed to have picked up a little bit.

O’Hare Airport in Chicago decorated for the holidays

Our initial plan of a Eurotrip, or a trip to tour Europe, was cancelled as all the airlines shut down a month before we were supposed to take off. Rightly so, countries were also denying access to help stop the spread of the virus. This left a lot of airports looking almost like they were straight out of a post-apocalyptical movie scene.

Empty terminal area at an airport in Chicago

We ended up making two trips down to Florida, one in November and one in December, and actually enjoyed the travel. Both of the trips we flew down there – so yes, we had to go to the airport, go through airport security (TSA), and board the airplane – and it wasn’t bad at all. In fact, it was all much better than our usual trips because there was way less people, which means everything went faster. Our bus to the airport was pretty much empty, so very peaceful.

Chicago’s O’Hare Airport terminal 3

Once we got to the airport, there were no lines to check in, so that probably saved another 20-30 minutes. If you ever flew out of Chicago’s O’Hare Airport, you know that you could wait up to 2 hours in line for TSA screening, well this time there was literally not one person in line. Now compare 2 hours to 15 seconds – sounds unbelievable.

Empty seats at an airport gate

After getting through TSA and walking up to our gate, there were empty seats everywhere. Boarding the plane itself was a breeze, but the best part is the plane was not packed. This means you usually have an empty seat between the other person or if you’re lucky enough you have the whole row to yourself.

Airplane with empty seats

After landing in Florida, we saw the same theme repeat throughout the airport. Barely any people there, no lines, no rushing, just get off the plane and get to your ride. Also, remember the pain of waiting for your luggage in the baggage area? Well, if our picture doesn’t ease your pain and stress then we don’t know what will.

Empty baggage claim area at an airport

On our way back, it was pretty much the same experience. We arrived at the airport in Florida, walked up to check in and got our tickets in less than a minute. Went through security again, this time there were two people in front of us and we’re not complaining. Honestly, as often as we fly we should just get TSA pre-check, but here we are still doing it old school.

RSW airport in Fort Myers, Florida

After the TSA check point, we proceeded to walk through the terminal to our gate to wait for our plane. Again, usually terminals are packed and you get stuck behind someone slow but that wasn’t the case this time. In fact, usually it would be way too busy to stop and take a picture and if you did then you wouldn’t see anything besides legs blocking your view.

RSW airport terminal in Florida

We saved the best for less – yes, a facemask was required the whole time. From the moment that you enter the airport until you exit the airport. That means however long your waiting to board the plane at the gate, plus the boarding time and the flight itself and then waiting for your bags. Again, we are not complaining as we enjoyed both of our trips but if that’s something that you think is going to bother you then it’s highly advised to drive to where you need to go – if possible.

We hope you enjoyed this article and our insight of our own travel experience during these crazy times. Of course, flying terms along with quarantine rules could change at any given time so please check with local laws before your travel.

Almost empty terminal at Chicago’s O’Hare airport

Equipment used:
Camera: Canon Rebel T6i
Lens: Canon 70-200 f2.8
Lens: Rokinon 8mm fisheye
Lens: Canon 50mm f1.8
Monopod: Altura 62″ monopod

Published by KB Digital

Photographer and Graphic Designer

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