While the world may never seem to be “post-covid,” travel is certainly booming again. My family longed for a vacation after two years glued to work and home, and finally traveled to America’s most picturesque destination: Hawaii. 

We called it our “Hawaii Five-O” Trip – a holiday to celebrate my parents’ fiftieth birthdays. The trip had been canceled and postponed many times because of the pandemic.

Our flight did not mandate masks, but required some basic safety precautions. Once tray tables and hands were sanitized – our plane was cleared for takeoff.  

In Hawaii, apart from occasional mask requirements, we were able to explore the emerald isles’ lush flora and fauna without fear of catching an invisible disease. 

The clean Oahu air seemed to have eradicated any palpable trace of COVID – one reason our trip had been canceled in the first place. We enjoyed once-in-a-lifetime experiences like surfing, exploring undisturbed paths in the mountains, commemorating Pearl Harbor, and discovering an ancient Japanese temple littered with koi. 

None of this would have been possible when our trip was initially scheduled in December.

Beaches in Oahu (image: Poorvi Sarkar)

In post-COVID life,  simple safety precautions like masking and hand-sanitizing make it safer for people to see and experience completely new things. Activities that may have been unsafe during the pandemic, like riding in an Uber or eating out, are now possible. 

The world of post-covid travel demands a few simple rules that will allow holidaymakers to experience the privileges of travel once again. 

Experiences like our “Hawaii Five-O” Trip are intangible, forever memorable, and for, now, safe.

Poorvi Sarkar is a student, independent journalist, and mental health advocate from New Jersey who works to spread more information about educational and racial inequity.