Will the Government Shutdown Affect Your Vacation Plans?

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Posted in Miscellaneous, Travel Tips

People all over the world are watching and waiting to see how the US Government Shutdown will affect them. However, US citizens should consider their vacation plans if you traveling anytime soon.

According to a recent article on CNN.com, here are the top ways your vacation could be interrupted:

National ParksPerson standing at overlook view of lake and mountains in the Rockies

While many parks are currently still open, that could change as this drags out. You may still find the gates open, but workers will be scarce. There have been complaints that parks are understaffed as it is, and the government shutdown will add to that problem.

Things like the trash, cleaning the restrooms, and emergency services (think getting lost or hurt while in a park), are seriously limited. Many are worried about maintaining the integrity of the parks by allowing people to attend them without the proper staff to ensure people don’t damage or destroy the property.

Visitors should go to www.nps.gov and select “Find a Park” for additional information on access to specific parks and sites.

Smithsonian Museums and National Zoogovernment shutdown

The 19 Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo in Washington, DC, closed their doors Wednesday to the public as the government shutdown continues. However, zoo staff will continue feeding and caring for the animals at the zoo. The live cameras will not be operational.

Air Travel, TSA Screening and Passport Processing

So far, airline travel is continuing as usual. However, travelers may experience more flight delays as airports are short staffed. TSA workers are continuing to work as usual with the understanding that they will be paid when funds are made available.

For Visas and passports: “In an advisory released at the start of the shutdown, the Bureau of Consular Affairs said that “scheduled passport and visa services in the United States and at our U.S. Embassies and Consulates overseas will continue during the lapse in appropriations as the situation permits.”
A US State Department official said facilities “will remain open as long as there are sufficient fees to support operations.”
Domestic passport agencies located in government buildings affected by a lapse in appropriations may be closed to the public, the official said.”

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