What Will the Summer of 2021 Look Like?


Sanna Patel

Summer break is on all our minds: will we be able to travel? Will there be a vaccine? Will we still be stuck in perpetual quarantine? 2020 was not what we expected in the least, but this is what we predict the summer of 2021 will look like.

First and foremost is whether or not we will be able to easily travel at all. Obviously, traveling is heavily impacted by the pandemic since flights are one of the most effective ways to spread a virus virtually everywhere. In the past couple of months, places like Europe have slowly been able to ease up on travel restrictions, but recently, certain countries like the UK have made the decision to go back into lockdown. Unfortunately, this means there is a travel ban as well due to the second wave of COVID-19. The second wave was an expected occurrence, but in the USA, a common destination for many at our school, the COVID situation is a bit out of hand. By this I mean COVID has been more of a consistent, increasing problem rather than one that comes in waves. This means that the situation seems like it will just get worse, making excessive travel seem unlikely. But, there is one solution that could save the summer: a vaccine. 

A vaccine is fast-approaching and is considered one of the only things that will change the course of the pandemic drastically. A COVID vaccine means that passengers would not have to worry about contracting the virus, but is it even possible to get the vaccine in time? Well, currently in November, vaccines developed by Pfizer and Moderna are showing promising results with higher than 90% effectiveness rates. The Moderna vaccine is looking like a better option due to ease of transport, but these predictions are not set in stone. Some researchers and scientists predict that vaccines may be distributed as early as spring of 2021, while others are guessing much later dates. The availability of the COVID vaccine will not fully be known until more information is gathered and regulators are able to confirm it; however, there is a chance that vaccines can begin distribution before the summer. They will likely be given out based on age, going from oldest to youngest, but the details of distribution are yet to be confirmed. It is anticipated that by June, many families will be vaccinated and safe to travel again, so hopefully the summer of 2021 will resemble our usual ones. 

Though this all sounds like good news, it may be hard for students like ourselves to get early access to the vaccine as the elderly take priority. However, we may be able to get the vaccine before the summer.  That being said, it will still be important to wear masks wherever we go, regardless of there being a vaccine, and some of the usual summer destinations like theme parks or cruises will still be closed or limited as they will still be too great a risk. So, we may be able to travel this summer, but our trips will all look very different this year: masks will still be a must, some places will still be off-limits, and we will probably have to quarantine in high-risk nations. Nevertheless, I think we are all very glad to finally be able to look forward to our summer break and get far, far away from our homes.