Super User

Super User

Could our Globe Aware volunteers imagine doing this!? Sometimes travel can go terribly wrong, but this passenger did something astounding to save everyone on a flight.


Passenger with no flying experience lands plane at a Florida airport after the pilot became incapacitated

By Jamiel Lynch, Dakin Andone and Pete Muntean
11th May 2022

"I have no idea how to fly the airplane."

The pilot on his single-engine Cessna 208 had "gone incoherent," the passenger was telling air traffic controllers Tuesday afternoon, according to audio from

It was, he stressed, a "serious situation."

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Air Traffic Controller Robert Morgan, a certified flight instructor, was on a break when the call came in from the plane, headed out from the Bahamas.

"I rush over there and I walk in and the room is really busy ... and they're like, 'Hey, this pilot's incapacitated. The passengers are flying the plane. They have no flying experience," Morgan told CNN's "New Day" on Wednesday.

"I said, 'Oh boy.'"

Morgan learned the passenger on the line had never flown a plane -- but had been around aviation and seen other pilots fly.

"He was really calm," Morgan said. "He said, 'I don't know how to fly. I don't know how to stop this thing if I do get on the runway.'"

Morgan had never flown this model Cessna. He pulled up a picture of the instrument panel's layout and started guiding his new student step-by-step.

"Try to hold the wings level and see if you can start descending for me. Push forward on the controls and descend at a very slow rate," the air traffic controller can be heard telling the fledgling pilot in LiveATC audio.

"Try to follow the coast either north or southbound. We're trying to locate you."

Morgan made the key decision to guide the aircraft to the area's biggest airport, helping the passenger-turned-pilot position his aircraft 8 miles out from Palm Beach International, "just so he could just have a really big target to aim at."

Together, they got the Cessna to touch down on the runway, footage obtained by CNN affiliate WPBF shows -- something that takes about 20 hours to learn with typical flight instruction.

The landing rated 10-out-of-10, in Morgan's view.

"I felt like I was going to cry then, because I had so much adrenaline built up," Morgan said. "I was really happy that it worked out and that nobody got hurt."

Other pilots were stunned, as another air traffic controller relayed across the airwaves what had just unfolded, other audio captured by indicates.

"You just witnessed a couple of passengers land that plane," the tower operator can be heard telling an American Airlines pilot waiting to take off for Charlotte, North Carolina.

"Did you say the passengers landed the airplane?" the American Airlines pilot asked. "Oh, my God. Great job," he said.

The condition of the original Cessna pilot, who had a "possible medical issue," was not immediately known, the Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement.
After the Cessna's landing, Morgan met his new student, who gave him a big hug and said thank you.

"It was an emotional moment. He said that he just wanted to get home to his pregnant wife," Morgan said. "And that felt even better."

"In my eyes, he was the hero," Morgan said. "I was just doing my job."

When it comes to wish list travel spots, Peru's Machu Picchu is a favorite, and is now open again to travelers. A guided tour can be arranged with Globe Aware when booking your Peru volunteer vacation, as a separate excursion.

Why Machu Picchu, Peru, should be on every traveller's wishlist

14 May, 2022
NZ Herald
By Sara Bunny

After a string of closures due to Covid precautions, Peru's ancient Inca trails are again open to visitors.

When it comes to wishlist travel spots, Peru's Machu Picchu is a perennial favourite. The jewel in the crown of the Inca Empire, it's a crumbling citadel of more than 100 buildings and a network of walkways and terraces, dating back to about 1450. Perched on a dramatic mountain range where the Peruvian Andes meet the Amazon Basin, the lack of tourists has made it unusually quiet of late. But recently, the Peruvian Government reopened most of the area's famous trails.

If you're planning a trip, book in with a tour guide to help navigate the various circuits and their opening times, as well as logistics with connecting buses and trains. New rules are in place for 2022, including limits on the numbers of visitors allowed on tracks at any one time and time restrictions at some of the more popular attractions.

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Regardless of what route you choose, here are a few of the many highlights along the way:

Temple of the Sun

Thought to be the spot where the Incas worshipped their sun god, Inti, it's likely that only priests and high-ranking community members were allowed inside. As Machu Picchu's only round building, its windows were carefully designed for observing the sun at the summer and winter solstice. Visitors are not permitted inside due to the temple's delicate structure, and it's best viewed from the lookout above.

Huayna Picchu

A popular backdrop for tourist photos, the sacred mountain features a series of steps carved into the cliff face. Some researchers believe it was used as a surveillance centre against attacks on the citadel below, while another theory is that is served as the seat of the high priest. You need to be fit to hike to the summit, but walkers are rewarded with once-in-a-lifetime views over the ancient city and surrounding lush mountains.

Temple of the Condor

Displaying the Incas' incredible skill at stonework, the temple was carved to resemble the open wings of an Andean condor. With an altar inside, it's thought the temple was used to make sacrifices to the gods, and there's also evidence it served as a prison. Find the temple in the Hurin area of Machu Picchu, near the city's main square.


Travellers to Peru must present an International Travel Vaccination Certificate, or a Covid-19 RT-PCR Report for a negative test taken at most 24 hours before departure. Check with your travel agent or airline for details.


Thursday, 12 May 2022 11:38

Mask-wearing mandate lifted in Cambodia

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen lifted the government-instituted mask-wearing mandate, leaving it to people across the country to decide for themselves. Globe Aware volunteers should know that mask-wearing requirements, however, still apply to enclosed settings such as air-conditioned offices, meeting rooms or movie theatres.

Mask-wearing mandate lifted in Cambodia

Borneo Bulletin
May 8, 2022

PHNOM PENH POST/ANN – Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen lifted the government-instituted mask-wearing mandate, leaving it to people across the country to decide for themselves.

Mask-wearing requirements, however, still apply to enclosed settings such as air-conditioned offices, meeting rooms or movie theatres.

The premier made the announcement, effectively immediately, in a special audio address to the nation.

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“From the time you receive this audio message, you can decide for yourself whether to continue wearing mask in open space or not,” he said.

At public gardens or parks and tourist attractions or recreational areas, mask-wearing is also optional.

People in certain areas – such as crowded places or where there are suspected cases of Covid-19 – are “encouraged” but not required to wear mask.

Hun Sen reiterated his call for the public to get vaccinated against Covid-19, at least with a third dose which is now compulsory.

Meanwhile, the Cambodian Ministry of Health yesterday reported two new Omicron community case, with five recoveries and no new deaths.

As of yesterday, Cambodia had recorded a total of 136,262 Covid-19 cases with 133,177 recoveries and 3,056 fatalities.

Cambodia reported no new Covid-19 cases on Saturday night (May 7), the first time since the third wave of community transmission broke out in February last year, Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen said. This is great news for volunteers wishing to vacation in Cambodia. Feel free to contact a Globe Aware team member in regards to entry regulations and safety.

Cambodia reports zero new Covid-19 cases for first time in over a year, says PM Hun Sen

08 May 2022
The Star

PHNOM PENH, May 8 (Xinhua): Cambodia reported no new Covid-19 cases on Saturday night (May 7), the first time since the third wave of community transmission broke out in February last year, Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen said.

"Today, it is the first time since Feb. 20, 2021 that Cambodia has found not even a single new case of Covid-19," he said in a special audio message.

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"This is a great success that resulted from our joint efforts in the fight against Covid-19, and I'd like to thank all compatriots for participating in the anti-COVID-19 movement," he added.

However, Cambodia is not Covid-19 free yet, as it still has 29 active cases, according to the Ministry of Health (MoH).

Hun Sen attributed the success in the fight against Covid-19 to the kingdom's high vaccination rates and urged eligible people to go for booster doses, the third or the fourth shots, when their turns come.

"We'd like to thank all foreign friends for providing vaccines to us, enabling us to give them free of charge to our people," he said. "Vaccines have given us an opportunity to reopen our economy and businesses."

The Southeast Asian nation launched a national vaccination campaign against Covid-19 in February 2021, with China being the key vaccine supplier and most of the vaccines used in the kingdom are Sinovac and Sinopharm.

The country has so far vaccinated at least one dose of vaccines to almost 15 million people, or 93.7 percent of its 16 million population, the MoH said, adding that of them, 14.22 million, or 89 percent, have been fully vaccinated with two required shots.

Buoyed by high vaccination coverage, Cambodia has resumed all socioeconomic activities and reopened its borders to fully vaccinated travelers without quarantine since November last year.

Kin Phea, director-general of the International Relations Institute at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, said vaccines have protected lives, stabilized health system and helped restore the economy.

"The royal government of Cambodia has made the correct decision to choose China as a strategic supplier of Covid-19 vaccines so that's why Cambodia has enough vaccines for its people," he told Xinhua.

According to the MoH, since the pandemic hit Cambodia in January 2020, the kingdom has recorded a total of 136,262 confirmed cases with 133,177 recoveries and 3,056 deaths. - Xinhua

Wednesday, 04 May 2022 10:30

Sunder Social Impact Mexico Adventure

Globe Aware is so excited to provide you this ADVENTURE IN SERVICE in Mexico! It’s a part of Mexico we doubt you have discovered (few have!) and you will be a part of creating infrastructure on a project that we trust one day will be as well-known as the Inka Trail, providing all sorts of jobs and revenue for the surrounding indigent communities. To register just yourself, click the blue “Register (individual)” button below. If you are registering for yourself and others (i.e. a family or spouse), click the “Register Group” button below. Have questions? We are here to help! Call 1-877-588-4562, option 1. Also, the full cost of your program is 100% deductible against your taxes, including funds spent on airfare.

Think of it as a Mexican Inka Trail or Camino de Santiago in Spain. The Camino del Mayab is a revolutionary hiking/biking trail in an overlooked area of Mexico, with a network of 130 kilometers of trails developed in conjunction with 13 Mayan communities. By bringing responsible travelers down this gorgeous path of cultural and natural wonders, it will bring sustainable dollars and resources to the calo communities. Visitors will be paying for local accommodation, food, buy gifts and souvenirs, pay for entrance to the stunning cenotes, and more. The unknown area has some of the most spectacular natural wonders and ruins of the Yucatan peninsula. This program also highlights the cultural and historical legacy of Yucatan, taking its visitors through fascinating towns, haciendas, and cenotes south of the city of Merida. However, the project is in its infancy with little infrastructure outside of the ancient trail system and natural wonders themselves. Our 1st group built a welcome center, a place for travelers to gather, buy entrance, and purchase handicrafts from locals. Along the adventurous path, there are many similar projects for us to complete to help revitalize this economically depressed network of communities.

This is the perfect program for the volunteer with a sense of adventure and a desire to connect with local community members.

Work Projects

The objective of the Camino del Mayab is to generate direct benefits for the people of the communities that make up the Camino del Mayab. The main objective is to grow tourism in the area, to give all community members opportunities for employment in guide services, food catering, lodging, transportation, and many more.

During the program, travelers will be able to live like locals, participating in daily life activities such as beekeeping, handicrafts, cornfield work, tending to livestock, and more.

There are three main problems that we work to eradicate: Social Inequality; Species Extinction; and Environmental Destruction. It is estimated that when this project is in its fifth year of operation, it will generate benefits direct to 360 indigenous people; of which 216 will be women and 72 young people. Most recently, Globe Aware completed the construction of a structure that will serve as a welcome building for volunteers at the start of the trail. Here, community members will be able to gather to sell goods, offer guide services, and host events that benefit both tourists and locals. The goal is that each village along the trail will have such a building for community members to offer services and gather.

The conservation of the environment of the Camino del Mayab is vital for the recharging of the aquifer that supplies the City of Merida. During the program, different activities will be carried out on rural construction, trail labeling and clearing, cenote restoration and infrastructure maintenance, agricultural work, rehabilitation of schools, and animal/environmental conservation. The specific project that you work on will depend on the needs of the community at the time the group travels, but rest of assured there is plenty of need and work to be done by our volunteers and community members.


Our Mexico program runs on a Saturday to Saturday itinerary. Days 1-4 will be spent in the communities of Camino del Mayab working on a variety of projects most mornings. Leisure and cultural activities are generally scheduled for late afternoons/evenings. The last day of the program (departure day) will be a free day of sorts, though our coordinator will be happy to recommend places for you to visit during the day and often tag along with you. Regardless of your choice of activities, they will be back around to transport you to the airport in time for your flight home.

While volunteers will have the opportunity to walk along the path to various sites, the predominant mode of transportation will be by vehicle from community to community.

Food and Lodging

Accommodations will vary depending on the community that you are volunteering in. Most meals will be eaten in lovely outdoor settings of the homes of the locals we are helping to serve, with authentic Yucatan food, from chicken pibil to enchiladas and more. The food here is always a special treat that volunteers and Instagram raves over. If you need special accommodations or have a larger group we can house you in very comfortable and historic haciendas for an additional cost. For the first four days of community work you will be housed in either camping areas and/or homes of locals of the communities. On the fifth day, volunteers will be transported to the City of Merida and stay in a mid-range hotel in the city center. Volunteers' activities will take place in nearby communities in the morning on this day and the evening will be spent exploring the city with our coordinators. All meals are provided for the duration of your program. Keep in mind that while in the communities outside of Merida, accommodations will be fairly rustic and simple. If camping, tents, sleeping bags, and often a mattress pad are provided. In the homestays, the bedding is simple and probably not as plush as you are accustomed to back home. Washing facilities will vary in amenities based on location.

Accommodation Options

Program with Basic Accommodations: $1,592.00
Program with Hacienda Accommodations: $1,942.00

Unlike most of our other program locations, Mexico offers two options for accommodations. For the more budget-conscious, rural “ecocabinas” that house anywhere from 4-8 people each, assuming two per bed are the base, included option. Traditional hammocks are also available if desired. There is no air conditioning with this option and less privacy, but there is power, bathrooms, hot running water, electric fans, a swimming pool within a 2-minute walk, 2 cenotes (Xbatun and Dzonombacal) within a 20 to 30 minute walk away or 10 minute by bicycle (provided by the program), a nearby nature reserve with deer, and a modest restaurant on the property as well.

For an additional cost, the other more luxurious option, which comes with air-conditioned rooms, is housed in a historic hacienda. The property has several beautiful on-site swimming pools, a stunning cenote, and a small museum. The rooms are decorated in a traditional style, but with modern and comfortable upgrades. There is even a small private pool behind each of the Cabanas. The on-site cenote is tucked away underground with crystal clear water, and you will often find that you have the entire pool to yourself. Wifi is available throughout the grounds. The hacienda option is an additional $350 per person.

Leisure and Activities

Mayan ruins, cenotes, haciendas and more! This program offers a truly immersive experience for the volunteer. Not only will you have the chance to spend quality time with our local coordinators and guides, but you will also take meals and participate and various duties and activities with community members in a homestay. There are various unique archeological sites, biodiversity zones, and spectacular nature walks along the trail. Visits to archeological sites are included in the price of the program. Coordinators will arrange a variety of team/community activities ranging from bonfires to cookouts to team games.

One of the favorite activities for volunteers on this program is the chance to swim in the crystal-clear waters of the various cenotes in the area. Cenotes are sunken, underground, bodies of water that have generally been created from ancient collapsed limestone. The result is a gorgeous natural wonder with aqua water and lush vegetation. While you may not be working directly on cenote infrastructure projects every day, there are plenty of opportunities to go for a refreshing swim while on the project site.

Arranging Your Airfare

Volunteers should plan to arrive at the Merida International Airport the day your program begins. You will be picked up directly from the airport and transported to your accommodations. On the last day of the program, you will be transported to the airport in accordance with your departure time.

Safety and Security

No vaccinations are required but you should always check with your personal doctor. There are nearby clinics and hospitals within an hour’s drive of the communities if needed. Additionally, there is a paramedic with the group that can tend to minor injuries or illnesses. Volunteers will travel as a team with Globe Aware personnel. Please contact our office for any needs or concerns regarding safety on the ground.

Wednesday, 04 May 2022 10:13

Four new Google trip-planning tools

Today, Google is launching a new set of travel search tools that can help you plan for your dream Globe Aware summer vacation. The set of four new functions will enable you to better customize searches and works on your desktop or mobile device.


Check out these four great new Google trip-planning tools

By Bill Fink
The Points Guy
May 2 2022

Today, Google is launching a new set of travel search tools to help you plan for that upcoming weekend escape, summer vacation or long-delayed dream getaway.

The set of four new functions will enable you to better customize searches and quickly sort through targeted destination, pricing and lodging choices before saving all the results in a personalized tab that works on your desktop or mobile device.

Want to be notified whenever your bucket list destination has a flight sale? Curious about road trips you can take from your in-laws’ hometown? Have to find a hotel or restaurant within a 10-minute walk from your convention center? Regardless of the details surrounding your search, Google has you covered.

Here’s everything to know about Google’s four new features.

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Updates to Google Flights

Google Flights has created a new feature that may inspire you to take that long-desired but seemingly out-of-reach trip.

With the latest Google Flights iteration, users can now track future flight prices between any cities by clicking on the new “Any dates” toggle switch. You could previously set flight alerts, but this takes the search process a step further.

If Google detects lower-than-usual fares anytime in the next three to six months, you will receive an email notification. This is great for planning for far-flung dream destinations or getting suggestions for spur-of-the-moment deals.

Users can also click on price grids and price graphs to evaluate flight options in selected date ranges.

Addition of ‘Explore Nearby’ function

Perfect for planning road trips, Google’s new “Explore Nearby” function is located under the Explore tool of Google Travel. It will allow you to pick a location (your home base or your future destination) and then add filters like budget and trip length to explore additional destinations nearby. Google will then suggest road trip-ready escapes.

Click on a highlighted photo and Google will populate a side tab with trip information like average drive time, hotel prices and weather.

More search options for hotels and attractions

Google is also introducing new map-based “interest layer” search options for Google Travel. You can now find lodging within a selected walking or driving time or distance from a particular landmark or address.

For example, you can search for accommodation options within a 15-minute walk of the Eiffel Tower. Enter the specific address or landmark in the search bar and select dates plus “hotels” and/or “vacation rentals” to see a shaded section of the map that shows nearby lodging options.

Or, if you want to find a particular neighborhood’s dining, shopping or sightseeing options, you can click new “interest layer” icons on the map along with walk or drive times. Even very specific search options like “kid-friendly hotels in Orlando under $200 with a pool” will return results (in this example, you’ll see a mapped list with 123 choices on a sidebar with photos, prices and booking links).

Additional hotel tabs of “When to visit” and “What you’ll pay” will show typical price ranges and weather patterns for selected time periods. Price tabs will include links to compare options across multiple web-based booking sites.

Creation of a travel bookmarking tool

Great for saving both dream travel research and practical details for upcoming trips, Google’s new bookmarking tool will allow you to tap a bookmark icon on any hotel for it to become a “saved property.” Then, you can return at a later time and hit the “saved” tab under “Your travel plans” to see all your targeted hotels and continue your aspirational or soon-to-be-booked trip planning.

Google has also created a travel icon that can be easily added to the home screen of your iOS or Android smartphone, giving you one-touch access to all your scheduled trips and future travel research.

Bottom line

The newly added Google search options will make it easier than ever to customize your travel research, consolidate flight and lodging options and save it all for future viewing.

The neighborhood searches and “Explore Nearby” search functions should be particularly useful when looking for travel ideas in cities or countries you have never visited before. Meanwhile, the seasonal flight pricing and hotel pricing searches will prove beneficial for finding deals.

Thailand has removed all testing requirements for vaccinated tourists, which includes Globe Aware volunteers. Entry procedures have been simplified and the country is planning to launch a new vaccine passport soon.


Thailand Plans To Launch New Vaccine Passport For Entry

Here we go again. After Thailand removed all testing requirements for vaccinated tourists, many believed it was finally prepared to abandon its infamously strict Covid policies. Although entry procedures have been simplified, those who had been expecting a full reopening to follow will be surprised to learn the country is, in fact, planning to launch a new vaccine passport soon.

During Covid, very few foreigners traveled to Thailand as a result of the country’s complex entry rules, which included multiple testing and quarantine post-arrival. Those rules have all been relaxed, and even though visiting Thailand now may be certainly a lot easier than it was in 2020 or 2021, this Southeast Asian nation remains extremely reluctant to fully drop its guard.

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Now, health authorities in the country are looking to replace the much-criticized Thailand Pass with a Thai Vaccine Pass. While it would de-bureaucratize travel for vaccinated tourists, the announcement has raised concerns the unvaccinated may be locked out of the country for good this time.

Here is what we have learned about Thailand’s proposed new vaccine pass and how it could affect tourists:

Thailand Pass To Be Replaced By A Vaccine Pass Soon

As announced by Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul on April 26, the ministry is mulling over the introduction of a new vaccine pass that will tentatively replace the existing Thai Pass. According to Charnvirakul himself, this will not present obstacles, but will instead ‘facilitate entry to Thailand by overseas tourists‘.

Elaborating on the topic, the Minister suggested Thailand could benefit from a vaccine passport, as they have been the ‘international standard used to screen foreign arrivals based on each visitor’s vaccination history’. He also confirmed his ministry is already currently ‘designing the process’, which should be operational by June.

At present, all travelers must apply for permission before arriving in Thailand. This means obtaining a Thailand Pass in advance, and preferably up to a week before travel, as waiting times vary and longer delays have been highly publicized. On top of that, visitors must either present a vaccination certificate or, when unvaccinated, apply to enter via one of the Quarantine Schemes.

Even when eligible, some travelers have been denied a Thai Pass, with the Tourism Ministry confirming that, while 2.1 million tourists have applied since the border reopened, only 1.5 million were accepted. Over 600,000 were unable to satisfy Thai requirements, had their applications refused and were subsequently unable to visit the country.

When saying travel will be ‘facilitated’ once a Vaccine Pass is in place, the Health Minister is likely referring to fully vaccinated travelers, as they would no longer need to apply for a Thailand Pass. Instead, they would have an option to simply present their certificate in order to ensure smoother entry into Thailand.

What About The Unvaccinated?

On the other hand, as expected with mandatory vaccine requirements, a tweak in the rules would be of little benefit to the unvaccinated, who have been allowed to visit the country, albeit under strict quarantine rules, and could have this route blocked should a vaccine passport become mandatory.

After all, little is known yet about the upgraded Thai Vaccine Pass. Here are some of the things we do know:

  • The system is being developed and should be operational by June
  • Only travelers who have had at least three doses of an approved vaccine will be able to apply
  • Filling out the immigration arrival form Tor Mor 6 (TM6) will remain mandatory
  • Covid insurance will still be a prerequisite for entry into Thailand

The Health Minister was quoted saying ‘two jabs alone are not enough to raise immunity for a prolonged period’, backing his ministry’s decision to launch the Vaccine Pass with a 3-dose minimum requirement. In summary, traveling to Thailand is becoming progressively easier for the vaccinated, and the vaccinated only.

Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, another one of Thailand’s leading figures in Covid management, reiterated he will be advocating for a Vaccine Passport himself. Ratchakitprakarn plans to present the proposal at the next CCSA – Covid-19 Situation Administration meeting.

Thailand Will Not Be Joining 36 Other Countries That Have Fully Reopened

Both Ministers have held meetings and have already agreed on the implementation of a Vaccine Passport, though they have come to the conclusion the new 3-dose requirement should be applied ‘selectively’. As some countries struggle with uneven vaccine distribution, certain foreign nationals would face greater challenges and could be offered a grace period.

This would most certainly not apply to U.S., Canadian, British and European citizens, who reside in countries with high vaccination coverage and wide availability of vaccines. While there are 36 other countries in the world the unvaccinated can travel to hassle-free, Thailand does not aim to be one of them, at least for now.

In other news, Thailand is seeking to implement soon a 300 baht entry fee, further adding to the woes of travelers. According to the tourism minister, 50 baht of the so-called ‘landing fees’ would be used as insurance coverage for all tourists, on top of the already mandatory travel insurance, and the remaining 250 baht will fund tourism initiatives in the country.


Not sure what you're dealing with since all three have commons symptoms? Globe Aware volunteers can read on to learn more about the symptoms of food poisoning, stomach flu, and COVID-19 and how to determine which condition you have.


Is This Food Poisoning, Stomach Flu, or COVID-19?

by Emily Cronkleton
March 17, 2022

If you are experiencing gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, you may wonder if the cause is food poisoning, stomach flu, or COVID-19. These conditions share similar symptoms, though there are some key differences between them.

Read on to learn more about the symptoms of food poisoning, stomach flu, and COVID-19 and how to determine which condition you have. You’ll also learn how to treat each condition, when to seek medical care, and how to test for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

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How to tell if my symptoms are food poisoning, stomach flu, or COVID?

To determine what is causing your gastrointestinal symptoms, it’s important to consider factors such as severity, accompanying symptoms, and possible causes. You may need to take a test to get a diagnosis.

Typical food poisoning symptoms

Eating food contaminated with bacteria, viruses, or parasites can cause food poisoning.

Symptoms can occur within a few hours, days, or weeks of consuming contaminated food. They tend to be more severe than symptoms of the stomach flu.

Common food poisoning symptomsTrusted Source include:

  • nausea
  • abdominal cramps
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • fever
  • weakness
  • headache
  • loss of appetite

Usually, symptoms are mild to moderate and get better within a week, with or without treatment. However, severe and chronic (long-term) cases may require hospitalization.

Typical stomach flu symptoms

A viral infection causes the stomach flu, called viral gastroenteritis. Usually, symptoms occur 1 to 3 days after exposure to the virus and improve within 1 to 3 days.

Common symptomsTrusted Source of the stomach flu include:

  • nausea
  • abdominal cramps
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • headache
  • loss of appetite
  • weight loss
  • dehydration
  • muscle aches
  • achy joints

As you can see, the stomach flu can give you many of the same symptoms as food poisoning, but with additional pain in the joints and muscles due to the viral infection.

Typical COVID-19 symptoms

People who develop COVID-19 from SARS-CoV-2 may have a wide variety of symptoms that are mild to severe. Usually, symptoms occur 2 to 14 days after exposure to the virus.

Gastrointestinal symptoms often occur during the early phase of COVID-19. They may appear before respiratory symptoms. Symptoms of COVID-19Trusted Source include:

  • nausea
  • abdominal pain
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • fever or chills
  • headache
  • muscle or body aches
  • cough
  • shortness of breath
  • sore throat
  • fatigue
  • new loss of taste or smell
  • congestion or runny nose

Unlike food poisoning or the stomach flu, COVID-19 usually causes respiratory symptoms as well as gastrointestinal. If you’ve developed a cough or are experiencing a lack of taste or smell, it’s a good idea to speak with your doctor and get tested for SARS-CoV-2.

Getting treatment for food poisoning or stomach flu during the COVID-19 pandemic

To treat mild to moderate food poisoning or stomach flu, there are several home remedies you can try.

Home remedies to treat food poisoning and stomach flu include:

  • Staying hydrated. Symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea can lead to dehydration. Consume plenty of water and beverages with electrolytes, such as coconut water, fruit juice, and sports drinks.
  • Using a heating pad. To alleviate abdominal pain and relax your stomach muscles, apply a heating pad to your stomach for 15 minutes at a time.
    Consuming ginger and mint. Ginger and mint may help alleviate nausea. You can take the herbs in supplement form or drink them in tea.
  • Drinking herbal teas. Drink licorice, fennel, and chamomile tea to calm and soothe your stomach.

If you have symptoms of dehydration, severe symptoms, or symptoms that do not improve within a few days, visit a healthcare professional.

Symptoms of dehydration include:

  • decreased urination
  • dry mouth, lips, or throat
  • dizziness when standing
  • extreme thirst
  • fatigue

See a healthcare professional if you have severe symptoms such as:

  • bloody diarrhea
  • high fever (103°F or 39.4°C, or above)
  • frequent vomiting, which can cause dehydration
  • diarrhea that lasts longer than 3 days

If you’re concerned about visiting a doctor’s office or hospital due to the possibility of contracting SARS-CoV-2, you can take precautions to maximize your safety by:

  • wearing a mask
  • maintaining a distance of 6 feet
  • using hand sanitizer regularly
  • scheduling your appointment in the morning, since the waiting and exam rooms are likely to be the cleanest

Healthcare workers and staff are taking precautions as well, most of whom are fully vaccinated. Some precautions they may take include:

  • regularly cleaning and disinfecting clinics
  • spacing out appointments to minimize the number of people in the waiting room
  • giving you the option to skip the waiting room altogether
  • performing tests and other procedures in the exam room instead of having you visit multiple locations, in some cases

Getting tested for COVID-19

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)Trusted Source recommends getting tested if you experience COVID-19 symptoms or have been in close contact with a person with COVID-19.

A rapid self-test involving a nasal swab will provide quick results. Laboratory tests involving saliva or a nasal swab provide results within 1 to 3 days. Usually, laboratory tests are more accurate than self-tests.

While you’re waiting for the results of your test, it’s a good idea to stay at home, both to quarantine and to take care of yourself. At-home treatments for COVID-19 are similar to treatments for other viruses and include:

  • getting plenty of rest
  • staying hydrated
  • taking prebiotics and probiotics to treat gastrointestinal symptoms
  • taking acetaminophen to alleviate headaches, body aches, and fever
  • applying an ice pack for 15 minutes at a time to reduce fever


Some symptoms of food poisoning, stomach flu, and COVID-19 are similar, which may make it tricky to determine which condition you have. In most cases, people can treat food poisoning or stomach flu by resting, staying hydrated, and using home remedies.

If your symptoms are severe or do not improve within a few days, make an appointment with a healthcare professional. They can provide you with an accurate diagnosis, determine if there are any underlying causes, and choose the best course of treatment.

If you think your symptoms are from COVID-19, follow the usual safety precautions and self-isolate. Take a test as soon as possible.





Medically reviewed by Elizabeth Thottacherry, MD — Written 
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What You Need to Know About Food Poisoning, Its Causes, and Treatments
Risk factors
What is food poisoning?
Foodborne illness, more commonly referred to as food poisoning, is the result of eating contaminated, spoiled, or toxic food. The most common symptoms of food poisoning include nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Although it’s quite uncomfortable, food poisoning isn’t unusual. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)Trusted Source, 48 million people in the United States (or around 1 out of 7) contract some form of food poisoning every year. Of those 48 million people, 128,000 are hospitalized.

Food poisoning symptoms
If you have food poisoning, chances are it won’t go undetected.

Symptoms can vary depending on the source of the infection.

Common cases of food poisoning will typically include a few of the following symptoms:

abdominal cramps
loss of appetite
mild fever
Symptoms of potentially life threatening food poisoning include:

diarrhea that lasts for more than 3 days
a fever higher than 102°F (38.9°C)
difficulty seeing or speaking
symptoms of severe dehydration, which may include dry mouth, passing little to no urine, and difficulty keeping fluids down
bloody urine
If you experience any of these symptoms, contact a doctor or seek medical treatment immediately.

How long does food poisoning last?
The length of time it takes for symptoms to appear depends on the source of the infection, but it can range from as little as 30 minutesTrusted Source to as long as 8 weeksTrusted Source.

With or without treatment, most cases will resolve in 1 week.

Causes of food poisoning
Most food poisoning can be traced to one of three major causes: bacteria, parasites, or viruses.

These pathogens can be found on almost all of the food humans eat. However, heat from cooking usually kills pathogens on food before it reaches our plate. Foods eaten raw are common sources of food poisoning because they don’t go through the cooking process.

Occasionally, food will come in contact with the organisms in fecal matter or vomit. This is most likely to occur when an ill person prepares food and doesn’t wash their hands before cooking.

Meat, eggs, and dairy products are frequently contaminated. Water may also be contaminated with organisms that cause illness.

Bacteria are by far the most common cause of food poisoning. Bacterial causes of food poisoning include:

E. coli, in particular Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC)
Listeria monocytogenes
Clostridium botulinum
Staphylococcus aureus
Vibrio vulnificus
When thinking of dangerous bacteria, names such as E. coli and Salmonella come to mind for good reason.

Salmonella is the biggest bacterial causeTrusted Source of food poisoning cases in the United States. According to the CDCTrusted Source, an estimated 1,350,000 cases of food poisoning, including 26,500 hospitalizations, can be traced to salmonella infection each year.

Campylobacter and C. botulinum are two lesser-known and potentially lethal bacteria that can lurk in our food.

Food poisoning caused by parasites isn’t as common as food poisoning caused by bacteria, but parasites that spread through food are still very dangerous. They include:

Toxoplasma gondii
Giardia lamblia
various tapeworms, such as:
Taenia saginata (beef tapeworm)
Taenia solium (pork tapeworm)
Diphyllobothrium latum (fish tapeworm)
Ascaris lumbricoides, a type of roundworm
flukes (flatworms), such as Opisthorchiidae (liver fluke) and Paragonimus (lung fluke)
pinworms, or Enterobiasis
According to the CDCTrusted Source, toxoplasmosis is a leading cause of death attributed to food poisoning in the United States. Toxoplasma gondii is also found in cat litter boxes.

Parasites can live in your digestive tract and go undetected for years. People with weakened immune systems and pregnant people are at risk of more serious side effects if certain parasites take up residence in their intestines.

Food poisoning can also be caused by a virus, such as:

norovirus, which is sometimes known as Norwalk virus
hepatitis A virus
The norovirus causes 19 to 21 million casesTrusted Source of vomiting and diarrhea in the United States each year. In rare cases, it can be fatal. Other viruses bring on similar symptoms, but they’re less common.

The virus that causes the liver condition hepatitis A can also be transmitted through food.

All travel restrictions for entering Romania related to the coronavirus were lifted on March 9th, 2022. Globe Aware volunteers can book their volunteer vacation to this beautiful European country with ease.


These countries have lifted all coronavirus travel restrictions

These are all the destinations in Europe that currently have no Covid-related entry requirements. This list is being regularly updated

20 April 2022

Since 2020, we’ve all needed to stay on top of the Covid-related rules for different countries – from where you can travel without a vaccine to which destinations require a Covid booster jab for travel. By spring 2022, however, a handful of European countries (including the UK since Friday 18 March 2022) have lifted all restrictions relating to coronavirus and travel, allowing international visitors to enter without proof of vaccination, a negative test, recent recovery or even filling in a passenger locator form. These are the places that have dropped all such rules – although, of course, we still recommend following UK health advice, including having your Covid vaccine and booster if you are able to.

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Czech Republic
On Saturday 9 April 2022, the Czech Republic lifted all coronavirus-related entry requirements for people arriving from other countries. Visitors do not need to show any proof of vaccination or negative tests and do not need to fill out a passenger locator form.

At the time of writing (Wednesday 20 April 2022), there are no coronavirus-related requirements regarding testing or quarantining when entering Denmark regardless of vaccination status. However, you can only enter Greenland if you can prove that you are fully vaccinated or have previously been infected with coronavirus in the past 12 weeks.

The Hungarian government lifted all coronavirus restrictions upon entering the country on Monday 7 March 2022. You do not need to show vaccination proof or any negative tests.

There are currently no rules about coronavirus vaccinations or tests to enter Iceland as an international visitor.

Since Sunday 6 March 2022, international visitors have not been required to follow any restrictions regarding coronavirus. If travellers develop coronavirus symptoms while staying in Ireland, they should follow the current HSE guidance.

There are no coronavirus-related travel rules for those travelling to Montenegro.

Entry requirements for Norway are the same for everyone, regardless of vaccination status. You do not need to show any negative tests, fill out any forms or self-isolate.

Since Monday 28 March 2022, pre-departure testing and proof of vaccination have not been required to enter Poland.

All travel restrictions for entering Romania related to coronavirus were lifted on Wednesday 9 March 2022.

As of Friday 1 April 2022, travellers to Sweden are no longer required to present a negative test or proof of vaccination to enter.


Monday, 25 April 2022 16:07

Mystic Nepal

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Buddhism in Nepal is the second-largest religion and is home to major Buddhist monuments and monasteries in the capital city of Kathmandu.

Every year, the city usually receives travelers from all over the world, visiting the Buddha Stupa Boudhanath and the Swyambhu Maha Chaitya Swayambhunath stupas. These are famous architectural sites found only in Nepal.

Nepal has many spectacular Buddhist monasteries. Hundreds of monks are trained from a young age and raised inside their peaceful walls, where they mostly use the Tibetan language in their studies, having limited chances to learn English. These monasteries are welcoming and calm places following Buddhist philosophy and are open to local and international visitors. A week here is the perfect volunteer vacation for those interested in an immersive cultural experience centered on spirituality and learning.


You'll land on Sunday, with a full day of sightseeing in Kathmandu the next day. The rest of the week is at the monastery, teaching, doing cultural activities, and exploring your surroundings. You will be visiting one of four Kathmandu monasteries, where the young monks' age ranges from 7 to 14 years old. Chholing, Chovar, and Nala are the boys' monasteries, and Nanarry is for girl monks.

Your volunteer teaching time will be around 4-5 hours daily. You'll be teaching young monks English, arts & crafts, and sports while learning about Buddhist philosophy, their practices, traditions, and joining in on celebrations!

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All meals are included. Nepali cuisine is heavily influenced by India, China, and Tibet, adding an authentic culinary twist. Expect meals of rice, flatbreads, and a variety of side dishes. Beef is generally not eaten or requested.

Our Mystic Nepal program offers you the chance to live at the monastery during your week!

There are four rooms at each monastery, two rooms with two single beds and two rooms with three single beds. Western toilets are available in the common area and reserved for the volunteers' use only. Internet facilities are available, although the signal may be weak. For hot water, electric kettles are available to heat bathing water in the wintertime ( which starts in October and ends in February).

It's important to note there is a strict 7 pm curfew at the monasteries, which volunteers also have to follow. Yoga sessions with the monks are at 5 am, which volunteers will not be able to join. We provide you with a private yoga instructor, who will hold sessions at the hotel or monastery when available.

Your hotel in Kathmandu will be a 3-star or equivalent hotel. Two people can share a room; however, you can book a private room for an additional price of $279. Please inform us ahead, so that we can book the private room for you. Rooms will have running water and western toilets. If you choose a hotel, there is no curfew after you have completed your day volunteering and exploring. Do not be alarmed by the occasional power blackout and spotty hotel wi-fi. The monasteries will be 10-15 minutes away by foot.

You can purchase a sim card upon arrival in Nepal, with the help of the coordinator, which is highly recommended. Transportation will be provided to and from your project site.

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Your week will also include:

  • Nepali language workshop.
  • Nepali dress workshop.
  • Yoga and meditation workshops.
  • A city tour with an English-speaking guide.
  • Kathmandu sightseeing of famous Buddhist monuments.
  • Free time to shop in Thamel market, in the heart of Kathmandu.
  • Farewell meal with the monks.

If you would like to see some additional monuments or sites in or around Kathmandu, please contact us ahead of time, so we can plan with our coordinators for an additional out-of-pocket cost. Please be understanding of any potential weather and time constraints.

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You will be landing and departing from Tribhuvan International airport in Kathmandu. Upon arrival, you will meet your Globe Aware coordinator and be dropped off at your accommodations, where you can catch up on some rest.


Nepal has a low crime rate; however, you should take sensible precautions. Watch out for pick-pocket purse-snatchers, particularly in airports, buses, and areas popular with foreign nationals. You should take care when walking around at night.

There have been reports of smugglers trying to entice travelers to assist in smuggling items. Under no circumstances accept - smuggling is a criminal act. Do not buy any illegal substances, the penalty in Nepal is severe. Exercise general caution and feel free to ask your coordinator for assistance or clarification of a given situation. You will need to apply for a visa to gain entry into Nepal.

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