Our Experience in 2021
At Zephyr Conferences and our sister tour companies we hosted 511 attendees this year. The reality is COVID is going to affect our tours and conferences; we have to expect that. However, our goal is to minimize infections on our tours and, especially, minimize community spread at our events. We were successful in this effort with ZERO instances of community transmission in 2021.
We did experience three cases of COVID:
- One person tested positive before flying to a tour and thus canceled, which shows the effectiveness of pre-event testing.
- A second person tested positive after returning from our Wine Media Conference but infected no one else while at the conference. This person came from a COVID hot zone and likely was infected prior to the event. Every person at the WMC was vaccinated.
- A third person tested positive at the end of a tour before returning home, likely catching it when on her own before the tour started. This person was vaccinated and symptom free. All other tour participants were vaccinated and did not contract COVID.
So what does this tell us? We can’t avoid COVID. But our policies are working to keep our participants safe.
COVID Safety at IFBC22
Past success does not guarantee future success. But we are confident in our COVID safety procedures for IFBC22 in El Paso.
- Everyone will be required to be fully vaccinated or tested. In 2021, 100% of our WMC conference attendees were vaccinated.
- Our meeting location is outdoors.
- We will recommend mask wearing at any time indoors.
- El Paso as a city is taking the pandemic much more seriously than Texas as a state, with more mask wearing and higher vaccination rates (currently 94%)
Flying Safely During COVID
We know many people are uncomfortable flying. I personally have been on many flights during the pandemic and have yet to catch COVID. Statistics show flying is relatively safe and my experience backs that up. Please see this blog post for my take on flying safely during COVID.