How have you been dealing with the travel ban so far ever since Covid-19 hit us? Here I have some tips to help you deal with the travel ban healthily and happily! 😀
Many countries went into a lockdown in this period. Most are cooped up at home and social activities decreased. It is an especially tough period for everyone to remain sane, but especially for frontline workers in the health sector. Everyone is impacted in one way or another.
For me, it was about getting used to the new routine of working from home, and using my Annual Leaves for other plans instead of my usual travels. I’ve since missed at least 4 planned trips in the past 6 months, to Japan, Australia, Malaysia and China. It feels horrible, I know. However, it is a good time to think about what other alternative ways I can spend my time on.
I’ve since found a few ways to put my time to good use, and also deveoped some new hobbies along the way.
1. Planning ahead for future travels
First item on the list would be none other than travelling. Although we should avoid physically travelling now, I think it’s a good time to use this period to start planning ahead for your future travels. You’re going to want to aim for your next destination because the travel industry is being hit so hard now that many are actually running promotions at never-before low prices to popular destinations. If you have a destination that you’ve always wanted to go, now’s the chance to aim for it!‘
However, do keep up to date with the latest Covid-19 status of that country and make a well-informed judgement before deciding on anything. You may choose not to lock in any money right now, which is completely fair. However, that should not stop you from planning!
Managing my own expectations
I’m not a risk-taker when it comes to travelling safely, so I’m actually just putting down destinations on my list. I cannot imagine having to get covid-tested and quarantined each time I get off a plane. In the meantime, I have come to terms with myself that travelling will only resume once a vaccine is produced. This helps me to manage my own expectations so that I don’t continue to feel disappointed with this situation of not being able to travel normally.
Instead, I find fun in other activities such as locking in travel buddies for my next destinations. You can also consider planning for staycations in your own country to feel more like you’re travelling! Such topics of discussion actually helps lift the mood up too as we create something to look forward to together. Rather than sitting together and mope, isn’t it better to make the best out of every moment?
2. Explore your own country!
Places of Attraction
Deal with the travel ban by doing some domestic tourism! I know Singapore is tiny and you’re probably chuckling at me saying domestic tourism. BUT when was the last time you visited the iconic places of Singapore? Sentosa, Universal Studios Singapore, Marina Bay Sands, S.E.A Aquarium, Singapore Zoological Gardens, Botanic Gardens, National Musuem of Singapore, Gardens by the Bay etc. The list is endless. Now is definitely the time to do so with all that time in Singapore!
Have a Food Tour
You can even do a food tour around the endless supply of amazing local food we have here in Singapore. Places like Newton Circle, Chomp Chomp Food Centre, Amoy Food Centre and many other hidden food gems in neighbourhood food centres. Seeing how many vendors have actually been hit by the pandemic, it’s time to show your support to them to make sure we keep that supply of amazing food going strong!
My personal favorite has got to be Ah Liang Ipoh Hor Fun at Amoy Food centre. Their fried fish dumpling is one-of-a-kind and something I can never get sick of!
Hiking around Singapore
After all that food, how about some hiking around the Singapore National Parks to burn off that calories? There’s a bunch of options that can last you for at least the next 10 weekends if you’re a hardcore hiker! Here are some of my recommendations.
- Labrador Nature and Coastal Walk (45 mins)
- Lower Pierce Reservoir Park (45mins to 1 hour)
- Fort Canning Park – Colonial History Trail (45 mins)
If you’re looking for a challenge, go ahead and check these ones out:
- Coast to Coast Trails – 36 km C2C Trail stretches from Jurong Lake Gardens in the west to Coney Island Park in the northeast
- Round Island Route – The Round Island Route (RIR) is a continuous 150 km park connector that goes around Singapore. It will complement the existing Park Connector Network, and has five main loops
- Singapore Botanic Gardens
- HortPark to Southern Ridges (3 to 5 hours)
The best way to deal with the travel ban is to invest in yourself. I’ve been taking a lot of this time I saved from commuting to work to read a lot. I’m a fan of reading so this may or may not be for you. Nevertheless, this is something I enjoy doing because it helps me to relax and transition out of that work mode after work hours.
I know it’s difficult with the work-from-home arrangement to draw the line between working and resting. It is sad to admit that I’m also a victim of checking emails and work chats out of my working hours. I also tend to have a quick lunch and jump back to work right after just because all is done in the same space. However, this is really taxing on the body as your body never seem to know when to rest and call it a day with work. It’s like you’ve never stopped working.
With that, here are some of the books I would recommend that are useful for relaxation and personal development:
- Tuesdays with Morrie – Mitch Albom
- Atomic Habits – James Clear
- The Path to Personal Power – Napolean Hill
- Success through Positive Mental Attitude – Napolean Hill
- How to win friends and influence people – Dale Carnegie
4. Give your room an overhaul!
Since you’re now spending so much more time at home, how about giving your room or house that well-needed overhaul? I don’t know about you but I’ve been staying in my current house for the last 17 years and things haven’t changed much since we’ve moved in. It’ll be fun to give my room some decluttering and a wave of Marie Kondo magic as a way to deal with the travel ban. I think making my room cleaner and lighter would make me enjoy even more of my time at home!
I personally love packing my things into neat storage boxes, trays, drawers or anything similar, so I’ve just included some here to kickstart your overhaul process.
Also, I think it would be really great to sit down and look through past pictures of times when you were having fun while travelling. Go ahead and frame some of them up in your room to remind yourself of that energy you had and excitement your felt to help you tide through this period of the travel ban. Be honest to yourself, how often do you look back at the photos you’ve taken during your travels? It’s always a rush, rushing to travel, rushing back home and starting work again the very next day.
For me, maintaining this blog gave me a good reason to look through my past pictures of travelling and it brought back so much pleasant memories. There were some pictures I didn’t even remember taking and it gave me some really good hearty laughs!
All in all, I sincerely hope you find these tips useful and do stay strong! We’ll tide through this together and look forward to the day we can all start to travel freely again 🙂