For the 50+ Traveler

Traveling is still a concern for many, but a study published this morning brings good news.

The study conducted by the Department of Defense and United Airlines found that exposure to COVID-19 on a plane is “virtually non-existent” when all travelers wear masks.

The study involved 300 tests conducted over six months. During each test, 180 million particles were released into the air, which is equal to the number of particles released by thousands of coughs. The study concludes that, on average, only .003 percent of particles entered a passenger’s breathing space, even aboard a full flight.

United Airlines Chief Communication Officer Josh Earnest told ABC News, "99.99 percent of those particles left the interior of the aircraft within six minutes."

“These results from the Department of Defense demonstrate that the steps we have taken at United, including maximizing airflow, running our air filtration system at all times, enforcing a mandatory mask policy, and overhauling our cleaning procedures, mean your chances of COVID exposure on a United aircraft are nearly non-existent, even if your flight is full,” said Toby Enqvist, Chief Customer Officer at United.

You can find the full study, sponsored by United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA), and Air Mobility Command (AMC), here.

If you feel comfortable flying somewhere in the U.S. for a getaway, read on for a comprehensive list of all the states with no mandatory quarantines or travel restrictions as of October 15, with links to our favorite places in each one. Before traveling to a new state, make sure to check the state’s official tourism or COVID-19 page ahead of time for the latest updates.

States excluded from this list require self-quarantining, a negative COVID-19 test result, or similar protocol. Keep in mind, many locations continue to require masks in public.