Traveling with Atlas Obscura During the COVID-19 Pandemic - Atlas Obscura
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Traveling with Atlas Obscura During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Updated: December 2, 2021

UPDATED DECEMBER 2, 2021: Beginning, December 6, 2021, all travelers entering the United States from abroad are required to have proof of a negative COVID-19 test (PCR or antigen) within 24 hours prior to boarding your flight for the U.S. You will be denied boarding if you do not have proof of a negative test. For anyone participating on an Atlas Obscura trip internationally and returning to the United States, we will facilitate this COVID-19 test for you.  Please see below for more information.

 

While the wonder and adventure we experience through travel remains the same, we at Atlas Obscura, like everyone around the globe, have worked hard to adapt to the changes brought about by the pandemic. We have always placed the health and safety of our guests and the communities we visit as our highest priority. That has not and will never change. 

In response to the pandemic, we have adopted new guidelines and precautions to promote healthy, responsible travel on our trips, and to provide as much flexibility and peace of mind as possible to our travelers. We continue to watch as new variants unfold, including the Delta variant and most recently, Omicron. Please note that these policies will continue to be updated as the global situation, and that of individual destinations, evolve.

It is also important to note that we at Atlas Obscura are not medical experts, and cannot account for each traveler’s particular health situation, nor can the precautions taken on-trip completely eliminate the risks of COVID-19. Please follow official public health guidelines and consult with your doctor before making decisions that could impact your health, including choices related to travel during the pandemic.

REVISED BOOKING POLICIES

For all bookings made through December 31, 2021, your deposit is fully transferable to another trip up until the date your final payment is due. Currently, final payment for most trips is not due until 60 days prior to departure, instead of our standard 90-day policy. A small number of trips may have different final payment terms, which will be clearly outlined on our website.

COVID-19 VACCINE & TESTING REQUIREMENTS

Atlas Obscura cares deeply about the health and safety of our guests, guides, partners, and the communities that we visit. We have developed the policy below in order to do everything in our power to travel responsibly and help mitigate risks while traveling amid ever-changing conditions.

We are closely monitoring destination-specific requirements and will continue to update policies as needed.

COVID-19 Vaccine Requirements

For all trips departing October 1, 2021 or later, all guests will be required to be fully vaccinated by the departure date of your trip in order to participate. Accepted vaccines include all that are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration or the European Medicines Agency. These vaccines include Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Johnson & Johnson (Jannsen).

Destination Requirements

Please click here to see a continually updated list of COVID-19 destination requirements. Atlas Obscura's vaccine requirement does not replace specific testing or other documentation required by a destination for entry. Travelers must be able to provide any other documentation required by a destination for entry which may include, but is not limited to: 

  • Proof of vaccine presented upon entry
  • Proof of a negative COVID-19 test (required testing types vary)
  • Proof of required insurance when indicated
  • Visa, or other general travel documentation as required for entry

When your trip is confirmed as a go, our team will provide a list of the necessary requirements according to the guidelines at that time. 

COVID-19 Testing Requirements

Certain destinations require visitors to be both fully vaccinated AND have proof of a negative COVID-19 test prior to arrival. This is true for some destinations even simply for transiting through a country or airport. Please click here to see the destination requirements for your particular trip.

If you are traveling to your trip destination by air, it is important to contact your airline directly for any additional specific testing or entry information that may be required for your flight itinerary, including destinations through which you may connect. 

Please reach out to us at trips@atlasobscura.com if there are any concerns regarding test results and/or vaccination status. Guests are responsible for providing all of the correct documentation upon entry.

Testing Requirements for Returning to (or entering) the United States

UPDATED DECEMBER 2, 2021: Beginning December 6, 2021, all travelers entering the United States from abroad are required to have proof of a negative COVID-19 test (PCR or antigen) within 24 hours prior to boarding your flight for the U.S. You will be denied boarding if you do not have proof of a negative test. 

For anyone participating on an Atlas Obscura trip internationally and returning to the United States, we will facilitate this COVID-19 test for you. Guests are responsible for the costs associated with taking this test. Testing costs vary by destination.

Please note, however, that should you test positive, you will be required to quarantine where you are before returning to the United States. Atlas Obscura will help however we can to coordinate logistics. Additional expenses for accommodations, meals, transportation, etc. will be the responsibility of the guest.

Please consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information on US entry requirements.

Trip and Medical Insurance

Check with your medical or travel insurance provider to find out what they will and will not cover should you become ill before or during your trip. If you don’t have travel insurance, we highly recommend connecting with Yonder Travel Insurance for more information on which type of policy would be best for you. In addition to coverage for medical services, it is important to have a policy that will cover any costs related to trip interruption or delays. It is also important to ask your insurance provider if you’re specifically covered for medical expenses or issues related to COVID-19 while traveling. 

After Your Trip

Should you show COVID-like symptoms or receive a positive test result within two weeks of our trip’s end date, we ask that you let us know. While maintaining privacy protocol and without disclosing your identity, we can alert other members of the group (if applicable) and/or recommend appropriate action.

Questions?

Should you have any questions or need further clarification on any of these policies, please contact us at trips@atlasobscura.com.


FAQ

Why is Atlas Obscura requiring vaccination on all of its trips?

The health and safety of our travelers and the communities we visit are of paramount importance to us. While this was not an easy decision to make, we recognized that we must err on the side of caution and do everything in our power to mitigate potential risks. 

Further, many destinations that are accepting international visitors are themselves requiring all visitors to be vaccinated in order to enter the country. Increasingly, local businesses such as restaurants, museums, various venues, and independent activity providers are requiring proof of vaccination for entry or participation. With the rapid changes in guidelines at the local level in many of the destinations we visit, this will help us to provide the best possible travel experience and reduce disruptions to your trip while in the destination.

Ultimately, our mission at Atlas Obscura is to inspire wonder and curiosity for the world. We feel this is the best way to protect the health and safety of everyone involved while honoring this mission and ensuring the best possible experience.

Are there any exceptions to the vaccination policy?

In order to promote the health and safety of our guests, partners, travelers, and community, Atlas Obscura is requiring that all guests be fully vaccinated. 

What does it mean to be fully vaccinated?

Per the CDC, individuals are considered fully vaccinated two weeks (14 days) after their second dose of the Pfizer, Moderna, or AstraZeneca vaccines (2 doses required), or two weeks (14 days) after the single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Guests must be fully vaccinated prior to the departure date in order to participate.

What if I am unable to be fully vaccinated in time for my trip?

If you will not be fully vaccinated prior to the departure date of your trip, we encourage you to join us on a future departure. Please reach out to us at  trips@atlasobscura.com so that we can help you transfer your booking and review your options.

If no future dates are listed, don't worry! New dates for our trips are added regularly. Sign up for our trips newsletter to stay up to date on new trips and departures.

What vaccines fulfill the requirement? 

Accepted vaccines include all that are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration or the European Medicines Agency. These vaccines include Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca (all 2-dose vaccines) and Johnson & Johnson (Jannsen) (1-dose). Someone is considered fully vaccinated 14 days after completing the last dose of a particular vaccine regime.

Is a previous positive COVID-19 test or proof of antibodies sufficient to satisfy the requirement?

No. All guests must be fully vaccinated in order to participate in an Atlas Obscura trip.

Do the same vaccination requirements apply for private trips?

Yes. All guests, regardless of the type of trip, must be fully vaccinated for trips departing October 1, 2021 or after. Even though you may be traveling exclusively with your family or friends, you will still be coming into contact with your trip leader(s), hotel, restaurant, and activity staff, among others. This requirement is in place in order to mitigate potential risks for everyone involved and to help reduce potential disruptions to your trip.

What documentation should I bring with me?

Travelers must be able to provide any documentation required by a destination for entry, or any other service provider, which may include, but is not limited to: 

  • Proof of vaccine presented upon entry
  • Proof of a negative COVID-19 test within a specific time frame (required testing types vary)
  • Proof of required insurance when indicated
  • Visa, or other general travel documentation as required for entry

It is essential that you bring any and all documents required. We recommend that you carry your proof of vaccine and negative COVID-19 test with you, as these could be required by any number of service providers.

You are responsible for providing all of the correct documentation upon entry. Atlas Obscura is not responsible for any trip disruptions or additional expenses incurred if you are unable to provide the required documentation as required.