A sign alerts travelers to the danger of COVID-19 at LaGuardia Airport, during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in New York, U.S., June 29, 2020. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

THE NEUTRAL ZONE

Fewer employees say they plan to take advantage of their full vacation time this year, prompting a new debate over whether to travel this holiday weekend. Motivated by employee wellness and possible liability for unused days, some businesses are encouraging their employees to take more vacations despite a continued surge in coronavirus cases across the country. 

A survey by Monster.com in June found that 51% of workers said they have experienced burnout since working from home. Mental health experts say that working from home can blur the lines between the office and home life, moving some people to feel as though they cannot stop working. But as employees consider taking a needed break, epidemiologists warn that there is no such thing as risk-free transportation. 

Even so, high demand for flights has prompted American and United airlines to announce that they will again fill their flights to capacity. Spirit CEO Ted Christie told USA Today that there is an obvious portion of the public “who is ready to go,” moving the airline to ramp up flights from 50 to 300 per day. Regardless, Americans will not be allowed to travel to the European Union, whose members announced on Wednesday that the U.S. is excluded from tourist-driven travel due to high numbers of coronavirus cases.  

Many Americans appear to be choosing more moderate travel options. According to search data from Airbnb, Americans are most often seeking secluded accommodations such as cabins in mountainous and rural areas that are closer to home. Overall travel is expected to decline for the first time since 2009, with road trips making up 97% of summer travel. A perceived lack of travel options has also prompted an uptick in boat and RV sales across the nation, with high portions of first-time buyers.

MEDIA PERSPECTIVE

Don’t Travel Before Checking Harvard’s COVID-19 Hot Spot Map – Forbes – 7/1/2020
The tool, which launched today, provides an easy-to-understand COVID-19 risk color-coded rating of green, yellow, orange or red. You can also drill down to the state or county level to see how a specific community is faring.

Here’s how safe it is to book a vacation rental right now – CNN – 7/1/2020
Proper cleaning and sanitization remain as critical as ever, of course, with both guests and hosts eager for guidance on keeping themselves and others safe. To help, Airbnb launched an Enhanced Cleaning Initiative, a set of guidelines created with the help of former US Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy. Similarly, Melanie Fish, a travel expert for Vrbo, says Vrbo has created cleaning guidelines that combine the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, World Health Organization and Cristal International Standards.

Travel Bans, Quarantines Don’t Stop but Can Delay COVID-19 Spread – Healthline – 6/29/2020
Amid all this back-and-forth, the basic question remains: Do these types of interstate travel restrictions even work? Experts aren’t so sure.“The literature is split and the data is incomplete,” said Patrick Hardy, a certified emergency manager, risk manager, and FEMA Master of Exercise Practitioner.

Forget burnout – here’s why you might have ‘boreout’ – The Telegraph – 6/30/2020
Unlike burnout – a syndrome categorized by “chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed” -boreout is defined by being severely underworked. “Burnout occurs when you have too much to do, or feel that way. Boreout happens when there’s not enough work to occupy your mind,” said Steve Chamberlain, a life coach and author of On Purpose. “It just chips away at your confidence over time; if we don’t feel like we’re making a contribution, then our sense of identity can erode.”

INFLUENCER PERSPECTIVE

Code Climate on Twitter, 7/1/2020: The signs of burnout may be different when your team is working remotely — make sure you know what to look for. @aneika and @anjuan will discuss burnout on remote teams (and co-located ones) in tomorrow’s remote fireside chat. 11aPT/2pET. Grab your spot

Columbia Tribune on Twitter, 7/1/2020:  Health officials are warning that the continuing increase in #COVID19 in Boone County means people should plan smaller Independence Day celebrations. Wednesday was the eighth time in the last 10 days with a double-digit report of new cases.

ABC 7 Chicago on Twitter, 7/1/2020:  Airbnb says 20% of the bookings for July 4th weekend are in rural areas outside of big cities.

Dr.Krutika Kuppalli on Twitter, 7/1/2020:  I still want to know how do you enforce quarantine of out of state visitors? People travel by air, train, road etc. Therr is no real way to enforce this that I am aware of unless you are like Hawaii and an island. Does anyone know?

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