Island Estates International
Kimberly Kagan, President

Some Tips For Travel During Covid Times

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I get asked almost everyday, what are the restrictions for traveling to and from Ecuador.  I thought I would speak from personal experience as I just got back from a trip I took from Ecuador to the U.S. and back in July/August 2020.  When I left Ecuador, I wore a mask and a face shield.  I was not concerned about myself as much as I was going to stay with my parents when I got to Chicago.  At the airport in Guayaquil, before you even went into the building, you were required to have your temperature taken and put your luggage into a tent.  It had clear sides so I could watch my checked bag and back pack.  They sprayed them.  I assume with some kind of disinfectant.  I then followed a line of circles on the floor that were six feet apart.  They are serious in Ecuador about social distancing.  Prior to going to the airport, I had stopped at the shopping mall, Mall de Sol, and same thing.  Temperature taken and circles throughout to keep people safe and apart.  Anyway...once I got to the gate, all of the benches were blocked off every other seat.  Again...distancing.  When they called you to line up for the plane, they did it by row...not by group.  That really helped lines of people.  I walked onto the Spirit flight.  I have never flown Spirit.  I was very impressed with how clean the plane looked.  Jeff actually poured alcohol on baby wipes which I had with me.  I wiped down everything around my seat from the windows, tray, to the seat belt and arm rests.  Once I landed in the U.S., it truly seemed like every other time I ever traveled except that EVERYONE was in masks.  

When I traveled back to Ecuador, I was required to get a negative Covid 19 PCR test.  That may sound simple but they just don't give those out to just anyone.  My friend, Merri, found a place through a doctor she knows.  The name of the place is LETSGETCHECKED.  They allowed the test to be sent to me so I could take it myself.  Honestly...if anyone is going to be shoving a q-tip up my nose, it is going to be me.  I had to take the test seven days before I returned to Ecuador.  (Now the timing is 10 days).  I was really nervous about getting the results on time.  I paid $119 for the test.  When I got it, I registered it on-line and stored the app in my phone.  They actually sent me texts to remind me to take the test.  On the morning I took the test...I can say it was unpleasant.  You need to put it in until you can't any longer and then twirl it around for 10 seconds.  It wasn't terrible.  My daughter had to have one done before a surgery two months before.  She made me laugh when she told me she lost childhood memories from that test.  Definitely not a place anything was supposed to be put.  Anyway...I then put the test in the envelope provided and dropped it off at the UPS store for overnight delivery.  The delivery charge was included in the $119.  That was on a Thursday.  Friday I received a text that they received the test and I should have results in 24-72 hours.  Yikes...My flight was the following Thursday and I was hoping they didn't mean business days.  Anyway...not to worry.  Saturday afternoon, I received a text that the results were sent to my email.  Voila!!  Negative and ready to go.  I printed out the results and put in my backpack.

When I landed in Guayaquil, Ecuador, we were shuffled to a room where you took a number and again sat every other seat.  I believe I was in there less than 10 minutes.  When my number was called, they looked at my paper and circled my name, PCR and negative.  They then stamped the paper and I was off to the races.  Easy peasy.


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Kimberly Kagan
Island Estates International
Ph: (312) 985-7703
Salinas Ecuador, 098.621.2688