The CDC Issues Travel Warning About Monkeypox Ahead of Memorial Day Weekend

The agency is suggesting you take advanced precautions.

Editor's Note: We know COVID-19 is continuing to impact your travel plans. Should you travel now, be sure to familiarize yourself with the CDC's latest guidance on domestic and international travel as well as local requirements, protocols, and restrictions for both your destination upon your arrival and your home city upon your return. Be safe out there.

Cases of the monkeypox virus have now been reported in North America, Europe, and Australia. The virus can be transmitted through skin contact, respiratory droplets, and through contact with material contaminated with the virus. It is considered rare, but after cases have been reported in 16 countries, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a travel warning.

The CDC advises travelers visiting the following countries to practice enhanced precautions and currently has monkeypox virus listed as a level two alert. Three is the highest level of caution and would result in a recommendation to avoid nonessential travel. Here are the 16 countries that had confirmed cases of monkeypox virus as of May 23, 2022:

  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • England
  • France
  • Germany
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • Portugal
  • Scotland
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • United States

The CDC says that the risk to the public overall is low, but there are some symptoms you should keep an eye out for. If you "develop new, unexplained skin rash (lesions on any part of the body), with or without fever and chills," you should seek medical attention immediately.

To protect yourself while traveling, the CDC recommends taking the following precautions.

  • Avoid animals when traveling.
  • Wash your hands.
  • Keep your hands away from your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

After two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, some of these precautions may sound familiar. Currently, there are 98 confirmed cases and 23 suspected cases, according to the World Health Organization.

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Opheli Garcia Lawler is a Staff Writer on the News team at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter @opheligarcia and Instagram @opheligarcia.