Is the pandemic over yet? Nobody knows. However, does that mean one can travel without restrictions and COVID-19 guidelines? Not really.
As the pandemic has not ended yet, testing is still vital for several activities, and travelling is one. Furthermore, it is not going any time soon. Even if you are fully vaccinated and present a certificate as proof of vaccination at the airport, a test report would still be mandatory.
So, yes, it is vital to take a covid test for travel purposes. This article will shed light upon the types of COVID-19 tests and why it is necessary to take one while travelling.
Types of COVID-19 Tests
For starters, make sure what type of test is required. Taking the wrong test and learning this the moment you present your report at the airport is the last thing you want.
COVID-19 tests can detect both the SARS-CoV-2 Virus and the antibodies. The test for the Virus is known as a viral test as it identifies if you have a viral infection. In contrast, the test for antibodies looks for past conditions in the host’s body.
Here are the types of COVID-19 tests to help you understand the case better:
The viral test is the primary test that identifies if your body is infected with the SARS-CoV-2 Virus that causes COVID-19. The nurse will collect the samples from your nose or mouth for the viral test. Viral tests also have two sub-categories:
- Rapid Point-of-Care Test
- RT-PCR Test
Another type, as mentioned in the test, can identify any past antibodies of SARS-CoV-2 in your blood. Wondering what antibodies are? Get this – antibodies are proteins developed by your immune system to fight against the infection. Furthermore, antibodies prevent you from getting sick shortly, so they are like a shield.
Since it only identifies past infections in the body, you cannot use antibody tests to diagnose current disorders. Also, did you know that if you take an antibody test after getting the vaccine shot, you might test positive?
Do You Need a COVID-19 Test?
Now that you know the two types of tests and their sub-categories, it is time to understand why taking a COVID-19 test.
- You are symptomatic
- You were in contact with a person who tested COVID-19 positive.
- Before and after travel
- For obtaining treatment
- You are advised to present a test report.
Covid Test for Travel
The final question is which covid test for travel purposes you should take? Although it depends entirely on the airline you are taking, RT PCR reports are considered the most viable option.
Only one reason could be that it is the most accurate one. Also, you cannot rely on an antibody test as it identifies only the proteins developed by your body to combat the Virus. An antibody test report cannot determine whether or not you are harmful or safe to travel with.
There you go! Now you know what test is the most reliable to have a hassle-free flight and travel experience. The tourism industry has suffered severely in the past couple of years. In June 2021, the arrivals decreased by 93.4 per cent in Australia alone compared to the pre-COVID levels in June 2019.
Following protocols is crucial to help the world crawl back to the pre-covid advancements. Let’s not complicate it!