(L-R): Sophomores Ella Berman and Brooke Brumfield pose for a photo in South Georgia over fall break. Photo: @brookebrumfieldd on Instagram

This past summer, plans to go to the beach, visit extended family or cheer on professional sports teams were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This past fall break, although some students traveled for college tours, visited friends and family and went to the beach, this vacation was unlike any other.

Airlines have instituted countless new safety regulations for flyers moving through their airports. Everyone is required to wear masks and answer surveys regarding their current health status. While in lines to check bags or to board planes, flyers have to follow the social distancing guidelines outlined by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Travelers are encouraged to utilize the hand sanitizer stations located throughout the airports and download airline apps for a completely contactless trip.

High school seniors have been gearing up to send in their applications to colleges, with fall break being the perfect opportunity to complete work for some. Colleges have shifted to giving students virtual tours, which includes a Q&A session and a slideshow of the university’s campus. Due to COVID-19, many students were unable to conduct in-person visits to schools. “Many of my friends are now relying on online tours to learn more about colleges, which is a great alternative to actually visiting the campuses in person,” said senior Michael Fu.

Many families opted to remain at home during the break, striving to maintain their distance from others and keep themselves and their families safe. However, some still found ways to have fun while staying at home. “We did a family game night and had movie marathons over the break,” said sophomore Sophia Mador.

Families hesitant to travel, but willing to make the drive, decided to road trip to nearby beaches. They eliminated high-risk contact with others by avoiding the bustling airport and still being able to travel. “You had to be more conscious and you really couldn’t go into as many gas stations and do as many stops as you usually would,” said sophomore Simon Gerber who drove to Isle of Palms with his family.

Students that were fortunate enough to travel during the fall break made adjustments due to the novel conditions and still managed to see their loved ones. Those who remained at home had the opportunity for a restful long weekend and a pause from the overwhelming school work. Following fall break, seniors worked on college applications, freshmen geared up for Community Service Day and sophomores and juniors readied for taking the PSAT.

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