COVID-19 | Omicron: Revisiting old land routes for resolute tourists

Asia's Tech News Daily

#covid impact, #Covid travel, #Delhi to London, Omicron, #road travel, #Travel, coronavirus, video calling

It’s perhaps time to look at some of the ancient land routes which travellers took before sea and air travel became commonplace. After all, personal vehicles or even shared ones with well-screened co-passengers are the safest mode of transport in these pandemic times. (Illustration by Suneesh K.)

With Omicron threatening to disrupt travel as countries rush to impose bans on flights and send travellers into quarantine, what is the intrepid traveller to do?

New variants of the coronavirus, it is now clear, will keep appearing from time to time. The impact they will have and the panic they cause is beyond the control of governments and even scientists, which is why there are no clear projections of the numbers. What is certain is that normalcy isn’t happening any time soon.

Also read: COVID-19 | Omicron: Shutting borders will not stop ‘invisible enemy’, need to analyse data, says Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

Among the various activities that are seriously interrupted by these recurring threats is international travel. While travel related to business and work can be substituted by video calling, technology has yet to come up with any real solution for wanderlust. No amount of virtual tours, no matter how brilliantly they are rendered, can provide the real experience. Which leaves the millions of people across the world, too restless to stay put for long and too adventurous to be able to avoid the lure of an idyllic fishing village or an island, in the lurch.

With international air travel suspended for most of the last two years and looking equally dicey in the near future, their flying options are severely constrained. The sea routes are also out of bounds for all but freight. Even though the no-sail orders have been lifted, most cruise ships stay docked in ports, with passengers wary of boarding them in the light of what happened at the start of the pandemic when on-board Covid outbreaks turned deadly.

Also read: Nearly 3,000 confined to cabins after COVID-19 case on Singapore cruise

Time perhaps to look at some of the ancient land routes which travellers took before sea and air travel became commonplace. After all, personal vehicles or even shared ones with well-screened co-passengers are the safest mode of transport in these pandemic times. All that is needed are well-organized routes, and travellers will take care of the rest.

Also read: New COVID-19 variant | Govt postpones resumption of scheduled international flights; air bubbles to continue

For choice there are the great caravan routes of the 13th century extending from southern Russia, north of the Caspian and Aral seas and north of the Tien Shan (Tien Mountains), all the way to Karakorum. Long before that there was the historic Silk Route stretching from Asia to the Mediterranean, through China, India, Persia, Arabia and Greece and also the hugely influential oasis route which passed along the north Indian plains and the Himalayas to connect East Asia to Rome.

While reviving these ancient routes might be onerous, a start can be made by identifying their modern equivalents. Already there are many such scenic routes out of India, including the one through the Jaigaon-Phuentsholing border in West Bengal all the way to Paro and Thimphu in Bhutan or the longer 3,000 kilometer drive down the India-Myanmar highway into Thailand. For the more daring, there is a wild trip-in-the-waiting all the way to Istanbul. Since it will entail traversing through Tibet, China, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and finally Iran, it isn’t for the faint of heart. Or how the about 8,000 kilometer stretch to Italy. After all, the beauty of the Amalfi Coast is best savoured while driving through the colourful villages en route.

Going forward, road travel might turn out to be the saving grace for destinations and tourists alike. Already a bus voyage between New Delhi and London, traversing 18 countries in 70 days, is in the offing. The problem with going on these kinds of trips is that they restrict one’s options. Sharing an off-roader with a bunch of like-minded travellers is a better option.

Before that, several issues need to be resolved. Beside obvious ones like visas and permits, there is the question of whether a country gives permission to drive on an Indian licence or necessitates having an international one. Currently several countries like Turkey, Iran and Turkmenistan accept a valid Indian licence. Vitally, countries will need to provide guarantees of safe passage.

Tourism is the backbone of many nations and is vital to their economic revival, so reassuring tourists, especially those coming by land, of their safety and smooth passage, will be critical.

Do that, and the road warriors will follow.

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related


Covid-19: Data suggests Omicron wave is ‘turning around'

The continued drop in UK Covid cases indicates the Omicron wave may well be “turning around”, a leading expert advising the Government has said. Prof Mike Tildesley, from the University ... Read more »

Data suggest Omicron wave is ‘turning around'

The continued drop in UK Covid cases indicates the Omicron wave may well be “turning around”, a leading expert advising the Government has said. Prof Mike Tildesley, from the University ... Read more »

Kepatuhan Prokes dan Percepatan Vaksinasi Disebut Kunci Pemulihan Ekonomi

© M Sholahadhin Azhar Sandiaga meminta seluruh pihak melaksanakan dua strategi tersebut. Sehingga, perekonomian Indonesia segera pulih. Jakarta: Menteri Pariwisata dan Ekonomi Kreatif (Menparekraf), Sandiaga Uno, mengingatkan pentingnya kepatuhan penerapan protokol ... Read more »

Ganjil Genap Kota Bogor, Volume Kendaraan Turun hingga 27.000 Unit

© Copyright (c) 2016 TEMPO.CO foto TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Kasatlantas Polresta Bogor Kota Kompol Galih Apria mengatakan pemberlakuan ganjil genap di Kota Bogor sukses menurunkan volume yang masuk ke wilayah ... Read more »

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to have further heart tests as he awaits Arsenal return verdict

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will undergo further tests on his heart and could return to the United Kingdom early after being sidelined at the Africa Cup of Nations, according to reports. The ... Read more »

Coronavirus third wave rolls back business resumption gains since second wave

A healthcare worker gives a dose of the Covishield vaccine against the coronavirus disease, to a farmer in his field, during a door-to-door vaccination drive in Banaskantha district in the ... Read more »

Gelombang Omicron, Kota-Kota Cina Tingkatkan Kewaspadaan Menjelang Imlek

© Copyright (c) 2016 TEMPO.CO foto TEMPO.CO, Jakarta -Beberapa kota di Cina meningkatkan kewaspadaan atas melonjaknya kasus COVID-19 menjelang musim liburan Tahun Baru Imlek yang dimulai pada Senin 17 Januari ... Read more »

Norwegian Caribbean cruise forced to return to NYC after Covid outbreak

© AFP via Getty Images File: Norwegian Gem cruise ship is seen at the Port of Miami – AFP via Getty Images Passengers were stuck at sea after a Norwegian ... Read more »

Scientists detect novel coronavirus in wild leopard cub in India

© AFP via Getty Images Representative image: Scientists suspect the cub was infected from people in a nearby village as leopards are less shy around human beings – AFP via ... Read more »

‘Millennial Dumbledore': How Ratan Tata hired Shantanu Naidu as his assistant

Shantanu Naidu graduated from Pune University in 2014. Armed with a degree in mechanical engineering, he started working at the Tata group as a design engineer. One evening, when he ... Read more »

COVID-19 | Tamil Nadu health minister claims 100% of this population got first vaccine dose

Representative Image of children receiving COVID-19 vaccine (Image: ANI) The Tamil Nadu health minister Ma Subramanian said that 100 percent of school students aged 15 to 18 years in the ... Read more »

SP começa a vacinar crianças de 5 a 11 anos contra a covid nesta segunda; tire suas dúvidas

Quer se manter informado, ter acesso a mais de 60 colunistas e reportagens exclusivas?Assine o Estadão aqui! São Paulo começa a aplicar a vacina da Pfizer contra o coronavírus em ... Read more »

Maharashtra CM to decide on reopening schools when COVID-19 spread is under control: Health Minister Rajesh Tope

Maharashtra, West Bengal, and Rajasthan are the three worst-hit states from the Omicron variant. Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope has said that the chief minister will take the final decision ... Read more »

EXPLAINED: How India's first homegrown mRNA vaccine can provide helping hand against Omicron

Representational image: Reuters The country’s first messenger RNA, or mRNA, vaccine, is prepping for launch with the Pune-based Gennova Biopharmaceuticals on course with its human trials, reports say, adding that ... Read more »

COVID-19 | Vaccination of 12-14 age group likely to start from March

(Representational image) India will begin vaccinating children aged between 12 and 14 against the coronavirus from February-end, Dr NK Arora, chairman of the COVID-19 working group of the National Technical ... Read more »

Comedian Kenny Sebastian marries girlfriend Tracy Alison in Goa. See pics

Kenny Sebastian and Tracy Alison followed both Christian and Hindu wedding rituals. (Photo shared on Instagram by Aakash Gupta) Comedian Kenny Sebastian got married to his girlfriend Tracy Alison, a ... Read more »

Cuarto cheque estímulo: Posibles fechas del IRS, pagos Plus-Up y tercer cheque | Hoy, 16 de enero

© MANDEL NGAN (AFP) ¿Un cuarto cheque de estímulo llegará en enero? ¿Quiénes recibirán un pago de impacto económico en 2022? Así las últimas noticias del Congreso y el IRS. ... Read more »

Delhi's daily Covid cases likely to go down by 4,000-5,000 Monday: Minister Satyendar Jain

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain on Monday said that the city is likely to witness 4,000-5,000 less COVID-19 cases than the number reported on Sunday. He also said the vaccination ... Read more »

Delhi's daily COVID-19 cases likely to go down by 4,000-5,000 today: Satyendar Jain

Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain (File image) Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain on Monday said that the city is likely to witness 4,000-5,000 less COVID-19 cases than the number reported ... Read more »

'The Disciple' actor Aditya Modak among NYT critics' picks for 2022 Oscar nominees

Aditya Modak as Sharad in “The Disciple”, the story of a classical music student torn between tradition and the desire for quick validation. Critically acclaimed Marathi film “The Disciple” and ... Read more »

Pandit Birju Maharaj's passing is an irreparable loss to the art world: Narendra Modi

Pandit Birju Maharaj gave Indian dance art a special recognition across the world, tweeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday tweeted that he was deeply saddened ... Read more »

Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 goes on sale today in India: Check price, specifications

Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 price in India has been announced. The budget tablet under Rs 20,000 comes in two variants with each having two storage options. The Samsung tablet takes ... Read more »

Covid vaccination for 12-14 age group may start by March

Even as 3.31 crore children in the age bracket of 15-17 years have received their first dose of Covid-19 vaccination, Dr NK Arora, chairman of the Covid-19 working group of ... Read more »

Google doodle urges people to get vaccinated, wear masks, save lives

The animated doodle shows letters G,O,O and G sporting bandages apparently after getting a vaccine shot. E, who is dressed as a medical practitioner gives a vaccine to L after ... Read more »

Omicron variant found in 85 samples in Uttarakhand

Representational image Uttarakhand has reported 85 new cases of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. Genome sequencing reports of 159 COVID-19 samples confirmed the Omicron variant in 85 on Sunday, Director ... Read more »

Australia PM Scott Morrison blames Omicron for testing woes as COVID-19 cases hit downward trend

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday the shortages of at-home antigen tests were “not unique” to the country as authorities deal with a runaway Omicron outbreak that has ... Read more »

Coronavirus Update | India records 2,58,089 new COVID-19 cases, 385 deaths; positivity rate 19.65%

Source: AP India saw a single-day rise of 2,58,089 new coronavirus infections taking the tally of cases to 3,73,80,253, which included 8,209 cases of the Omicron variant detected so far, ... Read more »

Vaccine for Omicron? Gennova Pharma Makes India's 1st Strain-specific Covid Vax, Govt to Review Trial Data

Representative image (AFP) Pune-based pharmaceutical manufacturer Gennova Biopharmaceuticals Ltd has almost completed the phase 3 trials of its Covid-19 messenger or mRNA vaccine even as the company has started developing ... Read more »

India records 2,58,089 new Covid infections including 8,209 Omicron cases, 385 deaths

India saw a single-day rise of 2,58,089 new coronavirus infections taking the tally of cases to 3,73,80,253, which included 8,209 cases of the Omicron variant detected so far, according to ... Read more »

Australia Mulai Kekurangan Pasokan Alat Antigen

TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Perdana Menteri Australia Scott Morrison pada Senin, 17 Januari 2022, menyebut kekurangan pasokan alat tes virus corona (antigen), bukan hal yang mengejutkan. Sebab otoritas di Australia saat ... Read more »

Amazon Great Republic Day Sale 2022: Best offers on smartphones including iPhone 12 and Samsung Galaxy S20 FE 5G

Amazon Great Republic Day Sale 2022 offers are live in India. The e-commerce platform is offering several deals and discounts on smartphones across all ranges. In addition to the best ... Read more »

Antisipasi Puncak Penyebaran Omicron, Mobilisasi Keluar-Masuk Jakarta Diperketat

© Copyright (c) 2016 TEMPO.CO foto TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Juru Bicara Wakil Presiden Masduki Baidlowi menyebutkan bahwa pemerintah akan memperketat dan memantau pergerakan masyarakat keluar dan masuk Jakarta. Pasalnya ibu ... Read more »

Prince Harry takes legal action over UK police protection for family

Prince Harry and wife Meghan Markle lost their UK taxpayer-paid protection when they quit frontline royal duties in 2020 and moved to the United States. US-based Prince Harry is appealing ... Read more »

Kathak maestro Pandit Birju Maharaj dies at 83

Kathak dancer Birju Maharaj would have turned 84 next month. (Image credit: Wikipedia) Legendary Kathak dancer Birju Maharaj died at his home in New Delhi early on Monday, his granddaughter ... Read more »

Thailand Laporkan Kematian Pertama Akibat Omicron

© ANTARA FOTO/REUTERS/Soe Zeya Tun/hp/cfo thailand Pemerintah Thailand melaporkan kasus kematian pasien Covid-19 varian Omicron pertama pada Minggu (16/1). Pasien itu berusia 86 tahun dari bagian selatan Provinsi Songkhla. Dilansir ... Read more »

Baru 2 Pekan Diterapkan, Kebijakan One Gate Policy Umrah Dikaji Ulang

© Copyright (c) 2016 TEMPO.CO foto TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Kementerian Agama melakukan kebijakan buka tutup pemberangkatan jamaah umrah. Direktur Jenderal Penyelenggaran Haji dan Umrah Hilman Latief mengatakan, buka tutup pemberangkatan ... Read more »

No person can be forced to get vaccinated against their wishes: Centre to SC

Gujarat began the COVID-19 vaccination drive for children in the 15 to 18 age group on January 3, with the state health department setting a target to cover 36 lakh ... Read more »

Australia news live update: ‘significant decrease' in NSW Covid cases predicted for coming month; rapid test price gouging referred to police

LIVE – Updated at 01:54 Follow all the day’s news.   01:54 Thanks so much Caitlin Cassidy for all your efforts today! Nice to be back on deck and here ... Read more »

Omicron Merebak, Pemerintah Gunakan Skema Buka Tutup Pemberangkatan Umrah

© Copyright (c) 2016 TEMPO.CO foto TEMPO.CO, Jakarta – Kementerian Agama mengumumkan kebijakan buka tutup pemberangkatan jamaah umrah Indonesia ke Arab Saudi. Ini menyusul terus merebaknya varian Omicron Covid-19 di ... Read more »

Men's tennis title up for grabs as Australian Open gets going without Djokovic

© Asanka Brendon Ratnayake, Reuters The Australian Open finally began at Melbourne Park on Monday after a chaotic and controversial build-up dominated by the visa saga that engulfed world number ... Read more »
On you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic