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2022 and the uncertainty of making reservations

Old Hickory

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Pessimism or reality? I would like to be optimistic, but, I’m also cautious. States that intermittently “lock down” their systems can cause the loss of some expensive vacation time. I’d rather be cautious and play it safe than have to manage last minute changes.
Good strategy but yesterday NY Gov Cuomo admitted that NY should "now" open. So expect the other lock down science followers to also change their minds.

 

n777lt

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I think a lot will depend on the rationality of the people you are with - masks probably advisable through 2021, just because you don't know where the guy sitting next to you has been in the previous week - even if he/she has been vaccinated they can still pass the virus, although perhaps at a reduced load, and if the mutations move fast enough YOUR vaccination may not protect you fully. Another key will be the availability of treatment - if this were like the flu, getting COVID wouldn't be so dire for those of us in risk groups, and travel won't be as big a deal. And with 30-50% of health care workers in some areas refusing to be vaccinated, the risks seem pretty high for now.
From what I have read, we'll probably have to get vaccinated yearly, but more effective treatments will become available in 1st World countries fairly soon, so that travel will return to normal by 2022...but not much before
 

vistana101

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I'm hoping to feel comfortable enough to fly once my family and I are all vaccinated (hoping this will be in the next few months). Will still stick to domestic locations with quicker flights, like Florida, for the benefits of extra ease (don't want to worry about getting tested in the right timeframe) comfort, and safety (shorter travel time = less exposure). Of course, will still be vigilant with precautions of mask-wearing, sanitizing, and distancing where possible.

Also have to make the decision of whether our usually spots will still be worth the high price point (or even points value) in the covid-era (considering the possibility of decreased amenities and service levels).
 

TravelTime

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I was thinking things would improve by 2022.
 

Fallenone

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My background is public health and did my share of biology during my studies towards my PhD. My take for 2021 is on the optimistic side, especially the second half and think I have some good reasons to be like this.

The biggest reason of course is the roll out of vaccines. Based on known data, they are pretty effective. And in theory, with an average transmission rate of about 3-4 new infections from 1 infected, you need 66%-75% of the population to be immune to completely stop the transmission. But there is a big assumption here: the whole population of healthy, infected, recovered, etc. is homogenously distributed. In reality, people are in close contact with a very limited number of people, especially during the pandemic. If these "pockets" of people are well aware of the precautions and closely following them they can be fairly well protected even without a vaccine. On the other hand, there are also groups of people come in close contact with many people outside their circle. Healthcare workers, cashiers, salon workers, waiters, etc. If we can get these people vaccinated, that can go a long way of cutting off potential infections with them at the center. These people are usually more concerned about their risk of infection due to the nature of their work so even if the general population's acceptance towards getting vaccinated may be only 60% or 70%, these people may have a much higher acceptance rate of getting vaccinated and would take off a big chunk of potential transmission. With the heterogenous distribution of population and low/high risk of transmission and their respective behavior, I don't think we need 75% of the population to be vaccinated to effectively eliminate transmission.

Besides of vaccine there's also natural immunity after being infected. Granted, there is a lot of evidence suggesting natural immunity is not that effective and long-lasting, but it is still something. And regarding this, the US has done a "great job" of having probably the highest % of population being infected. This can serve as a base and along with vaccination rate, work towards a threshold we need to stop meaningful transmission.

As for the variants, generally speaking, pathogens would actually evolve towards higher transmission rate rather becoming more lethal. The purpose of the virus is not to kill humans but to replicate itself as much as possible. Killing or making people sick is something they don't "want", because that is bad for their survival and propagation and the variants that do this will eventually be outcompeted by those that chose the other path. Think SARS almost 20 years ago. That one had something like >10% fatality rate. People were really scared and nobody can treat it like a hoax. So people who got it either died and stopped the transmission or are very carefully quarantined, which also stopped the transmission. The impact of SARS as a result was fairly limited.

As of now there's no evidence those variants are more deadly and I won't be surprised they will turn out to be less deadly than the one going around for a year. That is not to say we should ignore them since if they are 25% less likely to kill and 75% more likely to spread, that will still cause roughly 30% more deaths in the same period of time. But my guess is that COVID-19 will eventually be just another type of flu, as some coronavirus are already. This is a common hypothesis shared by many people I know who work in related fields since last spring. How long will it become like that? Nobody knows. But if the Spanish Flu a century ago is of guidance, even with technology and healthcare system back then it took three years for that virus to run its course to become insignificant. I think it would take less time for COVID-19 given all the tools we have now. The process of getting there is ugly, but we'll get there.

How effective the mRNA vaccine will be for these variants? This is not within my expertise so I'm just making my best guess here. I think it will still be pretty effective. In the first few months someone from WHO gave a very good analogy when asked about mutations discovered back then. It was something like two cars of the same make and model, just with two different plates. Of course the variants we discovered recently is more substantial than that. But they are still cars. The vaccines are teaching our bodies to shoot the tires of the cars in this analogy. So I think they will still work pretty well against these variants.

So given the developments in vaccine, the evolution of the virus itself, and considering the pandemic has already been going on for a year, I do think we can put this to bed sometime in the second half of 2021. Masks and washing hands and social distancing will likely still be in place until 2022 but I think the more hardcore restrictions will be lifted as the risks from the virus gets smaller and smaller.
 

m61376

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A little (lot) depressing for sure.... I was hoping once fully vaccinated we could resume some travel, but of course the multiple testing requirements for a trip even to the Caribbean may add an added layer of angst that makes it questionable. Definitely hopeful by the Fall we'd have enough vaccinations to achieve herd immunity, but it depends on whether they can produce and distribute enough vaccines, whether enough people take them, and whether they get approval for under 16.
I know the roll-out here in NY has been a nightmare. The initial group of health care workers who were hospital affiliated went fairly smoothly, but the system became clogged when they opened it up to non-hospital health care workers, and a week later initially added over 75/teachers/fire/[police and other essential workers, to be followed a day later with lowering the age to over 65. The non-hospital vaccine sites failed to schedule second doses, with people being told anything from you'll get an email to schedule to go back to the sites and try to book an appointment, leaving everyone panicked about scheduling a second dose. Vastly opening the pool of eligibility without either product or vaccination sites has left people absolutely scrambling to snag a coveted appointment. When a site opens with 400-600 slots for the day they're literally snapped up in under a minute. People are staying up all night trying to snag an appointment at one of the spots, with some trying for days on end. The frustration level has been awful. A humorous aside is those of us used to reserving our weeks perhaps are better prepared, because I've managed to book appointments for many friends, but not without tremendous effort and waste of time.
That said, it's clear everyone has been making a herculean effort to open sites rapidly and expand capacity, and the sites are extremely clean, organized and well run. It's just the scheduling/availability of appointments and the boggest obstacle to returning to some degree of normalcy- the supply chain.
That said, I really feel that if production ramps up and they get the kinks out, we can look forward to a more normal late summer into Fall and beyond. At least I certainly hope so!!!
I was hoping to return to Aruba by Spring, but havng to get tested within 72 hours of leaving anf then again before being allowed to return is a bit much. I get the safety and the science, but I was hoping that being vaccinated would change some of the requirements. I think it'll be a few years before thinking of Europe and, honestly, I don't know if I ever want to cruise again. I think even before Covid there were reports of them being floating incubators, and the reports of people being stranded in a floating death trap for weeks on end when the pandemic first struck are forever seared in my brain, and not sure that I'd feel comfortable and wouldn't worry about the "what if" something else crops up, like finding another mutant strain of Covid or another bug. i wonder if the cruise industry will ever recover.
 

dougp26364

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So here is the issue I’m seeing with the hope of the vaccine....... people are resistant to get it.

I’m a healthcare worker on the “frontline”. I’ve seen a surprising number of my colleagues turn down the “experimental” vaccine as they are more concerned with the known side effects as well as the unknown long term potential side effects. This both surprises and discourages me. When educated people working directly in patient care with a high risk of exposure refuse a potentially life saving vaccine because of relatively minor side effects vs the known potentially lethal nature of this disease, I shudder to think what the general public will do. At the moment, healthcare workers are not doing a good job of leading by example.

I’m getting my second round shot tomorrow of the Phizer vaccine tomorrow and my wife will get her second round of the Moderna vaccine Tuesday. If nothing else I enjoy being part of the first wave to see how effective both vaccines might be and, am hopeful that if nothing else, carrying our vaccination cards might assist in opening doors to travel s always having to be swabbed to prove our health status before traveling to states such as Hawaii.
 

Dean

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So here is the issue I’m seeing with the hope of the vaccine....... people are resistant to get it.

I’m a healthcare worker on the “frontline”. I’ve seen a surprising number of my colleagues turn down the “experimental” vaccine as they are more concerned with the known side effects as well as the unknown long term potential side effects. This both surprises and discourages me. When educated people working directly in patient care with a high risk of exposure refuse a potentially life saving vaccine because of relatively minor side effects vs the known potentially lethal nature of this disease, I shudder to think what the general public will do. At the moment, healthcare workers are not doing a good job of leading by example.

I’m getting my second round shot tomorrow of the Phizer vaccine tomorrow and my wife will get her second round of the Moderna vaccine Tuesday. If nothing else I enjoy being part of the first wave to see how effective both vaccines might be and, am hopeful that if nothing else, carrying our vaccination cards might assist in opening doors to travel s always having to be swabbed to prove our health status before traveling to states such as Hawaii.
Ageed. I understand the concern about a new vaccine and new technology but given the risks of the disease, the risks of the vaccine are clearly worth it. Using the 80% requirement of vaccination uptake for her immunity, even if everyone were vaccinated right now that could, we wouldn't be there because the population % of kids and adults makes it such that 80% aren't approved to get a vaccine currently. Moderna is 18 & above and Pfizer is 16 and above. There are currently no studies in those under 18, one is just getting going at 12-18 though I'm sure we'll see trials in younger patients later in the year. Even one we're around 80% vaccinated you have to get the data to see how things are going and that will take time. People will also have to be desensitized and that too will take time. Having had the disease does not appear to offer sufficient protection to count those in those that are protected and it appears the vaccine doesn't prevent infection or transmission, only severity. When companies and organizations start to require vaccination as a condition, we'll get to have some fun discussions.
 
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