The Hit List - Advice for nervous travelers with compromised immune systems

After a few years of being housebound due to the pandemic, I began to take baby steps and travel again. Last week, I was in Los Angeles for a teaching gig at 22 Teachings, a gorgeous space hosted by the brilliant Naha Armady. I adore Naha, so this was an easy yes. (Los Angeles, you treated me like a queen. I love you – and will be back.)

While most folks are no longer concerned with Covid, it still plays a huge role in my life. I live with someone who is immune-compromised. Catching Covid could be a death sentence. Hence, I live my life like a little recluse. I won’t risk causing harm to them.

This situation has put a serious crimp in my globe-trotting. Frankly, I don’t mind. Full confession: I’m a nervous traveler. When I need to leave home, my anxiety is at full tilt. I imagine every worst-case scenario (most of which never happen) and begin looking for excuses to back out. It takes everything to pry me out the door and push me on the plane.

I’ve started implementing new strategies to minimize my dread and risks. Here’s what I do.

Avoid mass anything as much as possible. I prefer to drive if I can. It’s like being in my own little pod. If that’s not possible, my next choice is a train, provided it’s not longer than 24 hours. A sleeper gives me a private room – which I love. The plane is my last choice, and I’ll only take it if the train ride is too long. If I must take a plane, I choose first class. This will put me in the front in less cramped conditions. Trains and first-class flights are expensive, so that means I have to budget carefully. It also means I travel less because it becomes prohibitive. Keep in mind, none of this is to be a fancy pants. It’s safety.

I wipe down my plane or train seats with disinfecting wipes. I also carry a spray with me for additional disinfecting. Extreme? Maybe. Again: not taking chances. (My top choice is Clorox wipes.)

I have a portable air purifier. This little gem works like a charm. It’s discreet – and it gives me additional peace of mind.

I wear a mask everywhere, carry hand sanitizer, and practice social distancing. I limit my exposure to other people as much as I can. If I teach, I announce my policies on social distancing. Most folks are respectful.

Speaking of teaching, I only say yes to smaller events. If it’s over 50 people, it’s a hard no. When I used to attend conferences, I always came home with a nasty cold. It’s too crowded – and people are not always diligent about washing their hands or respecting personal space. While I miss my conference buddies, the risk is not worth it.

I stick to hotels or stay with people I trust. Air BnB is not always a guarantee of cleanliness. Hence, I avoid ‘em. (Also, when I’m on vacation, especially on a work trip, the last thing I want to do is clean someone’s house. NOPE.) I’ll do a quick swipe on high-touch surfaces with my Clorox wipes and spritz my disinfecting spray when I arrive.

Hanging with folks is strictly limited. This means I don’t get to see everyone or spend tons of face time with fans. I’m not stuck up; I’m just trying to minimize exposure to germs. (Also, when I’m on a business trip, there are often meetings and obligations, so my time to play is scarce. Sorry!)

Once I’m home, it’s quarantine and testing time. After a few days of cautious distancing with my loved one, we’re back to our normal lives—which isn’t that normal when you consider the measures we take.

If you are immune-compromised or live with someone who is, you don’t have to live like Howard Hughes. You can travel and socialize…carefully. I hope my tips help you feel confident and safe the next time you need to travel.



PS Someone gave me two products from Dr. Schulze: Air Detox and Herbal Shield. I love these portable purifiers! They smell good, too. Thanks, Tracy!

PSPS I came home and did not catch Covid! Huzzah!


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What I’m Grateful For:

Home, sweet home

Good friends

22 Teachings

Meeting new people


Soundtrack for 4/13/24

Beat Of Your Heart by Purple Disco Machine, ÁSDÍS

© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2024

images from stock photography and personal collection 

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