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COVID Without herd immunity will you really sleep at an albergue?

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Marbe2

Active member
Year of past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
Assuming most of us flying will be vaccinated: If caminos opens up in the late summer or fall, how likely are you to walk in 21? Will you, knowing that a number of peregrinos sharing the room in the albergue may not be vaccinated, still sleep in the same room? If we do not reach herd immunity, how safe would it be to share sleeping quarters with non vaccinated folks? For the sake of everyone , should those sharing a common room be required to show proof of vaccination. I know this may not be a popular idea with some...
 
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Rent a house in Santiago (1 month minimum)
300m from the cathedral and around the corner from the fresh food market in Santiago. Perfect place to tele commute from (1GB symmetrical connection).
Year of past OR future Camino
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(May 2018)
VdlP (2022?)
Easy answer. No.
And maybe not even in 2022.

It's going to take a while for vaccinations to be rolled out, for their effectiveness to be fully understood and for the implications on travel and the Camino to be fully tested in reality.

There are sure to be some backwards steps a long the way.

I'm not a pessimist. Quite the opposite in fact. But also a realist.

For example, the full vaccine rollout here in Australia will probably not be completed till the end of 2021.

And I'm sure many countries will be far later than that.

I am happy to wait till it is safe.
 

Lindsay53

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances April / May 19
I would love to walk in the second half of this year but practically it won't be possible until 2022. No problem for me at all sleeping in an albergue with others, as vaccination will almost certainly be required for international travel when it re-opens, so the numbers of non vaccinated pilgrims will be extremely low.
 
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Bristle Boy

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2022
I'm planning to walk this September 2021 provided I'm fully vaccinated. If you are fully vaccinated and sleeping in an albergue with some people who are not vaccinated, where is the risk? Surely you will not get Covid if you are fully vaccinated?
The risk is to them (the unvaccinated) There isn't enough known yet and the vaccination doesn't stop you contracting it...or passing it on.
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
The risk is to them (the unvaccinated) There isn't enough known yet and the vaccination doesn't stop you contracting it...or passing it on.
I agree and can't say one way or the other as there are still too many unknowns imo to have complete confidence that these experimental vaccine's will accomplish all they hope to do.
 

longwayhome

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJpdP to Santiago ( Sept-Oct 2018)
I'm planning to walk this September 2021 provided I'm fully vaccinated. If you are fully vaccinated and sleeping in an albergue with some people who are not vaccinated, where is the risk? Surely you will not get Covid if you are fully vaccinated?
The risk is that vaccination reduces your chance of hospitalisation, ventilation or death from Covid but DOES NOT protect you completely from getting it NOR PASSING IT ON. Success rates for prevention will take some years to establish , as will transmissibility between vaccinated and non vaccinated. We do not know how long till antibodies from vaccines wear off, nor how protective one vaccine will be against multiple variants. We know very little in fact. The vaccines are very helpful but Covid will remain with us from now on, in one form or another.
 
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Jean Ti

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
.
Easy answer. No.
And maybe not even in 2022.

It's going to take a while for vaccinations to be rolled out, for their effectiveness to be fully understood and for the implications on travel and the Camino to be fully tested in reality.

There are sure to be some backwards steps a long the way.

I'm not a pessimist. Quite the opposite in fact. But also a realist.

For example, the full vaccine rollout here in Australia will probably not be completed till the end of 2021.

And I'm sure many countries will be far later than that.

I am happy to wait till it is safe.
There a lot of wisdom in your comments!

In Spain yesterday 10474 cases of Covid-19 recorded and 131 casualties. We are not out of water yet.

And the unknowns about the current 5 variants in circulation.


2022 sounds more realistic to me too.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
The French Way (2016), Portuguese Camino (2018),
Assuming most of us flying will be vaccinated: If caminos opens up in the late summer or fall, how likely are you to walk in 21? Will you, knowing that a number of peregrinos sharing the room in the albergue may not be vaccinated, still sleep in the same room? If we do not reach herd immunity, how safe would it be to share sleeping quarters with non vaccinated folks? For the sake of everyone , should those sharing a common room be required to show proof of vaccination. I know this may not be a popular idea with some...
I will be heading out on one of the Caminos in September. I am vaccinated, I have faith and feel that the lockdowns have damaged many very deeply. I am also a nurse practitioner working daily since this Covid popped up. I am also not wearing a mask while outside
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I will be heading out on one of the Caminos in September. I am vaccinated, I have faith and feel that the lockdowns have damaged many very deeply. I am also a nurse practitioner working daily since this Covid popped up. I am also not wearing a mask while outside
Covid and the many ensuing lockdowns have emotionally, and for many financially, damaged us all in one way or another.
Thank you for your service as a nurse practitioner in working amongst those affected physically by this pandemic. I also do not wear a mask when outdoors. I breathe a sigh of relief and a sense of freedom...I'm glad I enjoy walking in nature.
 

Antonius Vaessen

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2015-2016 VdlPlata - Sanabres
2016.Primitivo
2017 Salvador
2018 Norte (to Sobrado)
2019 Norte again
Assuming most of us flying will be vaccinated: If caminos opens up in the late summer or fall, how likely are you to walk in 21? Will you, knowing that a number of peregrinos sharing the room in the albergue may not be vaccinated, still sleep in the same room? If we do not reach herd immunity, how safe would it be to share sleeping quarters with non vaccinated folks? For the sake of everyone , should those sharing a common room be required to show proof of vaccination. I know this may not be a popular idea with some...
In a month time I will have had my 2 vaccinations ( pfizer). I am planning to walk from Le Puy en Velay to Irun . I intended to go in may or june. I fear that that will not be impossible because of measures of the french government. I expect that during the summer months countries will open up. I would gladly take the risk of sleeping in an
albergue, probably most people will be vaccinated and there be a reasonable herd immunity. It is indeed not clear if a vaccinated person can spread the virus, but what I read about it sounds promising. 100 % safety is never possible and I feel that the dangers of covid are diminished to a great extent when all vulnerable people are vaccinated. For me it is not necessary that everyone must proof that he/ she is vaccinated, but probably my opinion will not matter much. I expect that this will be required anyhow.
 
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peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I hope everyone can understand how difficult it is for the moderators to keep these discussions within the guidelines we have established. Several posts in this thread have gone far off the topic of — will you sleep in an albergue if you are fully vaccinated?

We understand that the topic of covid is almost all-consuming, but please do not give your opinion about masks, shutdowns, vaccines, or when it will be safe to travel. For some of those questions, we have a thread that points you to some reliable resources. Other questions, like whether you think masks are an intrusion on freedom or a sensible public health measure, or whether you think vaccines change your DNA or are the solution to the pandemic, are off limits.

This is one of those areas where we really need everyone’s cooperation.


We’ll leave this thread up for now, but urge you all to err on the side of not posting when you think your comment may have crossed the line.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2017
Planning for 2021
I'm planning to walk this September 2021 provided I'm fully vaccinated. If you are fully vaccinated and sleeping in an albergue with some people who are not vaccinated, where is the risk? Surely you will not get Covid if you are fully vaccinated?
The vaccination may not stop you getting covid, only that if you do get it it may not be as serious. Also there is no proof yet that the vaccination stops you from carrying the virus and spreading it. So much has been made very plain in briefings. Personally no plans until 2022, and only then if the science says it is reasonably safe to do so.
 
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JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Year of past OR future Camino
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
Herd immunity is a very complex topic, and I personally believe that it's frankly out of bounds for this forum, given how political the issue has become generally. As has the question of the comparative effectiveness of the various vaccination programmes.

Herd immunity varies massively from one disease to the next, and even from one strain of a disease to the next, so that some diseases are stopped by as little as 25% of people having caught it and recovered, others as much as 75%.

But this is NOT a medical forum, and it never will be !!

And then there's the whole political thing about "vaccine passports", which this entire thread is tending towards, and I will completely refrain from giving my thoughts on this question.

Honestly, my main response to this thread is that it should be shut down.

I cannot for the life of me see how a discussion about whether certain pilgrims should be excluded from albergues can be helpful in any way.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
My main concern with regards to travel in Spain has always been what danger I might be to others. I expect to be fully vaccinated by sometime this summer. As soon as I am, I shall be looking for information as to whether Spain is open to pilgrims. If it is, I shall go in September, to walk the Levante to the VdlP in Zamora, to the Sanabres, and on to Santiago. Most of the albergues on the Levante have very low occupancy and it is a seldom walked camino in general. By the time that I am on the VdlP, I expect that it will be late season, with few pilgrims. I shall not ask anyone whether the albergues are being policed for vaccinated pilgrims only. I shall continue to take whatever precautions are recommended to protect others. As a senior, I expect that my chances to walk caminos will be limited and I should not wish to miss this opportunity. But if information suggests that I shall be an additional risk to others, I shall reconsider.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2017); Camino a Muxia (2017)
My chances of deciding to walk the Camino from Burgos to Santiago sometime from August through mid-October, and to stay in albergues along the way, are better than 50% at this point. I am cautiously optomistic and slightly more so each passing week.
 
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Kevin Considine

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Assuming most of us flying will be vaccinated: If caminos opens up in the late summer or fall, how likely are you to walk in 21? Will you, knowing that a number of peregrinos sharing the room in the albergue may not be vaccinated, still sleep in the same room? If we do not reach herd immunity, how safe would it be to share sleeping quarters with non vaccinated folks? For the sake of everyone , should those sharing a common room be required to show proof of vaccination. I know this may not be a popular idea with some...
Yes. We walked the Via Francigena last July to October and stayed in some dormitories in Italy. Just followed standard covid rules.
 
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daesdaemar

Camino-holic
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Ingles - twice
I'm planning to walk this September 2021 provided I'm fully vaccinated. If you are fully vaccinated and sleeping in an albergue with some people who are not vaccinated, where is the risk? Surely you will not get Covid if you are fully vaccinated?
Being a physician, I diligently follow the Covid news. Unfortunately, there are already reports of small numbers of people who have been fully vaccinated who have acquired the disease. The vaccines are not 100% effective. In those affected, the disease appears to be mild, and perhaps more importantly, they are contagious.
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
I will sleep in an albergue when all of the below are true:
  • I have the time available to walk a Camino
  • Both my own country and Spain are not saying travel is a bad idea
  • I have both doses of the vaccine
Exactly.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
I'm planning to walk this September 2021 provided I'm fully vaccinated. If you are fully vaccinated and sleeping in an albergue with some people who are not vaccinated, where is the risk? Surely you will not get Covid if you are fully vaccinated?
Unfortunately there are 2 problems here, and they are related to a third that I will list as 2b

1) Vaccines are not reliably able to prevent becoming infected.
2) People vaccinated can still express symptoms of COV-19 — merely in reduced form; or, as now, they may be asymptomatic carriers.
2b) problems 1 and 2 for the vaccinated traveler tromping across a country, eating in group settings along the way, visiting religious sites and museums presents a hazard to the aged/rural/unvaccinated locals who can still end up dying from your asymptomatic infection.

My benchmark is not only my own vaccinated status, but the status of the destination. I’ve had one dose of Pfizer. Second dose in July. We do not know yet if the mRNA vaccines are effective beyond 6 months (I’m optimistic based on the the science, because the mRNA vaccines do not rely on antibody immunity but on immune system recognition across cell structures), but there’s a chance I will have to be vaccinated *again* before I can go to Spain. And there’s the issue of whether the roll-out there gets into enough people quickly enough, and whether there is enough supply developed in an ongoing manner to deal with booster shots.

I have hopes to be on the ground for 8 months starting in January.... to learn more Spanish in an immersive setting, and to look for a “forever home” somewhere west of Astorga and North of the Mino. But I might not get my wish... and if that’s so, it will have to wait for another 3 years until my next sabbatical.

Or, you know, I could risk causing an outbreak in which 60% of a small village gets sick because of my asymptomatic carrier status.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2017
Planning for 2021
My main concern with regards to travel in Spain has always been what danger I might be to others. I expect to be fully vaccinated by sometime this summer. As soon as I am, I shall be looking for information as to whether Spain is open to pilgrims. If it is, I shall go in September, to walk the Levante to the VdlP in Zamora, to the Sanabres, and on to Santiago. Most of the albergues on the Levante have very low occupancy and it is a seldom walked camino in general. By the time that I am on the VdlP, I expect that it will be late season, with few pilgrims. I shall not ask anyone whether the albergues are being policed for vaccinated pilgrims only. I shall continue to take whatever precautions are recommended to protect others. As a senior, I expect that my chances to walk caminos will be limited and I should not wish to miss this opportunity. But if information suggests that I shall be an additional risk to others, I shall reconsider.
Unfortunately there are 2 problems here, and they are related to a third that I will list as 2b

1) Vaccines are not reliably able to prevent becoming infected.
2) People vaccinated can still express symptoms of COV-19 — merely in reduced form; or, as now, they may be a symptomatic carriers.
2b) problems 1 and 2 for the vaccinated traveler tromping across a country, eating in group settings along the way, visiting religious sites and museums presents a hazard to the aged/rural/unvaccinated locals who can still end up dying from your asymptomatic infection.

Or, you know, I could risk causing an outbreak in which 60% of a small village gets sick because of my symptomatic carrier status.
Exactly, this.

Those intrinsically safer unknowingly (and potentially uncareingly) affecting their fellow beings.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2012
Members might like to recall all those colds, flu and especially all those gastrointestinal infections we used to share with our fellow Albergue dwellers (never mind the chinches).

When vaccinated, and if official advice is that intra and international travel is permitted, I will go, walk, and lay my weary head where I can. Albergue, Parador or that friendly little Posada: it's a roof and a bed.

Risk is risk and should be assessed at the relevant time.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
CF 2014, CF 2018, CP 2019 from Coimbra
Exactly, this.

Those intrinsically safer unknowingly (and potentially uncareingly) affecting their fellow beings.

Yep.... I am really saddened, actually, by the “But it’s MY CAMINO” thing, and the “Camino is free to all of us!” assertion I see floating around more and more in different locations/communities related to the CdS.

It’s “your Camino” was never meant to mean “If you can pay you can play” and especially not “bring your own house rules” — it just means that nobody is to interfere in whatever lessons unfold for a person on Camino.

And Camino has *never* been “free”. I sometimes wish that to leave on Camino one still had to acquire the blessing and traveling documents of one’s priest — to mitigate against the uncaring exploitation of the way.
 

Oregon's Mark

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
May, 2017; return, leaving SJPP May 24, 2018, Frances #3 in May-June, 2019
Being a physician, I diligently follow the Covid news. Unfortunately, there are already reports of small numbers of people who have been fully vaccinated who have acquired the disease. The vaccines are not 100% effective. In those affected, the disease appears to be mild, and perhaps more importantly, they are contagious.
Thanks for sharing your informed, professional opinion.
 

CalgaryLynn

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Assuming most of us flying will be vaccinated: If caminos opens up in the late summer or fall, how likely are you to walk in 21? Will you, knowing that a number of peregrinos sharing the room in the albergue may not be vaccinated, still sleep in the same room? If we do not reach herd immunity, how safe would it be to share sleeping quarters with non vaccinated folks? For the sake of everyone , should those sharing a common room be required to show proof of vaccination. I know this may not be a popular idea with some...
Fully vaccinated, I am hoping to go late September. Booked for that date. For extra precaution, I will be staying in hotels rather than albergues, just to be extra careful. If proof of vaccination is required, I am sure the albergues will be safe. In Canada, we are hearing from our medical experts that fully vaccinated at 72% of the country we will not have to wear masks or social distance.
 
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Marbe2

Active member
Year of past OR future Camino
2015-2019 walked all or more than half of CF 7 times... CP recently cancelled by Covid 19!
We are hoping to walk in September or October if Spain is open and transportation is reasonably fluid. Even though we are vaccinated, we know that there is currently a low risk (5 percent with Pfizer) of contracting Covid despite being vaccinated.

If Spain is open and if we adhere to CDC guidelines and our vaccines are still considered highly effective at 6 months, we think we can do a camino route safely.

We do not think sleeping in a common room in an albergue with strangers, would be wise in the Fall. From our perspective it is the equivalent-of a congregant living situation only every night with a new community. We know that many congregant living situations had higher rates of infection/ transmissions early on in the pandemic

Our first choice would be to stay in private rooms with good airflow. Avoiding common areas inside and indoor restaurants will be the general strategy. We would love to Camp, but then I would be too stiff to walk the next day.
Definitely no albergues....
 
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