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All week WAAY 31 is asking experts what our lives will look like after the outbreak. Thursday, we focused on the changes you can see, if and when, travel is allowed again.
Huntsville travel agent, Susan McDougal, has 35 years of experience under her belt. She said she's been in constant contact with other agents, industry leaders, and forums to see what traveling internationally might look like after the coronavirus.
McDougal said one of the biggest things you could see is rapid coronavirus testing at airports, bus stops, and docks before you board any type of transportation.
"It's going to have the same impact 9/11 did and probably more drastically. We now have to take off our shoes and do certain things that we never had to do before 9/11 and that's because of things we could be carrying with us and now we're worried about what we could be carrying in us," said McDougal.
She said some airlines companies overseas are currently taking passengers temperatures before the board their flight. McDougal said she can see cities or countries limiting the number of tourists allowed in yearly.
"I see a big change in a lot of people and places not allowing as many people to get in there. I don't see big cruise ships going back into Venice ever again," said McDougal.
McDougal and Dr. Karen Landers with Alabama’s Department of Public Health think the new normal probably includes a tougher visa process and likely forces travelers to provide immunization documents or medical proof they aren't infected with coronavirus. Landers said she can see coronavirus information for each person being added to vaccine and immunization charts.
"That's down the road but that might be something included in a persons personal health history such as their immunization record," said Landers.
While it may seem like a hassle now, McDougal expects rapid testing and immunization proof to help get people traveling again.
"That's going to help a lot and help with consumer confidence," said McDougal.
McDougal said all of these theories are up in the air because things are changing quickly but she believes we will see some major changes in traveling. She's very hopeful the industry will bounce back quickly, and she's still booking some vacations for people in the future.