A full risk assessment should be performed prior to the employee travelling. This should be based on:
- Medical history of the traveller.
- Medical history of traveller’s family members / household.
- Vaccination status of traveller.
- Infection status of the destination.
- Lockdown / quarantine requirements should be fully known for destination and departing location.
- Documentation needed to enter the destination (e.g. proof of immunisation, extra evidence of medical history).
- Location of local hospitals / doctors. Confirmation on how to access healthcare services if needed.
- Any other issues why traveller would not wish to travel – mental welfare check.
- Review social distancing and / or infection control measures that have been put in place by the airline.
- Book seats away from other travellers.
- Book flexible tickets - changes to entry/lockdown regulations may impact available flight options.
- Ensure the traveller has adequate insurance cover and, where possible, that COVID-19 cases are included in the policy.
- Carry proof of international travel health insurance.
- Pack required medication to cover at least an extra 14 days.
- Before departure, clarify which specific hygiene and disinfection measures have been implemented at the hotel/accommodation (e.g. no contact room service, additional cleaning measures and revised check-in procedures).
- International hotel chains (4-5 stars) will usually set the appropriate standards for their own hotels within the framework of quality management.
- Establish how meetings are held at the destination (e.g. social distancing rules) and under which general conditions.
- Have an alternative option for accommodation prepared should there be a case of COVID-19 detected in the hotel/accommodation.
- Prepare action points and continuity plan to follow with your POC/line manager in the event of accommodation be placed under immediate lockdown.
Travel and PPE
The following PPE is recommended for travelling:
- Enough hand sanitiser that can be carried by the employee for the duration of travel plus one week extra should the return date be delayed
- Face masks either certified reusable or enough single use masks for the duration of travel plus one week extra should the return date be delayed.
- Ensure the employee knows the limits and appropriate use of PPE to further minimise risk.
In flight / transit
- Maintain social distancing from airport staff and other travellers when checking in and during transit.
- Use hand sanitiser and wipe down any documents required for check in with anti-bacterial wipes – do the same when documents are handed back.
- Expect longer boarding times due to social distancing regulations and possible temperature checks.
- Ensure meet and greet procedures factor in delays caused by longer boarding times.
- Use hand sanitiser and hand washing facilities where available during transit.
- Use reputable pre-booked taxi services; submit your enquiries about their safety protocols before departure.
- If it is safe to do so, and if in line with safety measures, slightly open the car window to allow airflow (put windows fully up in traffic/urban areas - use AC).
- If possible, pre-pay for the service or use the card to pay to limit contact.
- If travelling in groups, check prior to departure how many people are allowed in the car.
- Regularly use hand sanitiser whilst in transit.
Arrival at destination
- Maintain social distancing when moving through the airport and comply with regulations that may be required at your destination.
- Expect to see checkpoints at some airports with thermal imaging cameras, fever measurements or rapid tests on entry .
- While in your travel destination, it is recommended to regularly check your temperature and stay alert for any symptoms.
- Stay in touch with your employer or arrange a daily check-in call.
- Comply to any regulations or restrictions that may be required on the return to country / area of residence (e.g. self isolation periods, quarantine periods, mandatory testing etc.)
- It is highly recommended that COVID tests be performed on return – on day one and day seven of return to home country / area.
- If the employee shares a household with at risk individuals, it is recommended that a period of isolation should be instituted, and accommodation arranged outside of their home for a period of seven to 14 days.
- Line manager should conduct employee welfare checks for a period following return.