Young, Confident and Flying, Virus Be Damned

For some people, a $50 plane ticket is too good a deal to pass up, even during a pandemic.

Comments: 213

  1. I understand the emotional appeal of these deals to heedless youth, regardless of the risk they pose to others- but the irony for someone like Mr. DeSimone is that if he has a healthy cigarette habit, as he implies, he could be putting at risk older folks who have followed his path of consumption- and may well be setting himself up for a poor outcome in a future epidemic that targets respiratory function.

  2. @artikhan I was thinking the same thing, being an apparent heavy smoker a $50.00 cigarette tab is a pretty sizable smoking habit. But that puts him at a higher risk of getting Covid-19 smokers immune systems. It's a proven fact that the effects of tobacco smoke on the immune system include greater susceptibility to infections such as pneumonia and influenza. more severe and longer-lasting illnesses. Maybe he should rethink cheap travel, and think about quitting smoking.

  3. How is this not the lead: “Traveling during the pandemic flies in the face of expert advice and government advisories. Travelers who are infected, even if they are not showing symptoms, may transport and spread the virus to a new location, or contaminate an airplane, cab or Airbnb. While they may be healthy enough to survive the virus, they could be putting others at risk. They could also get infected during their travels, and have to be hospitalized during a trip, or get quarantined somewhere far from home.” Highlighting the joys of cheap travel is irresponsible during this global pandemic. Sure, there’s a story here about people doing it anyway. But please don’t glorify the idea when you state in the same article that expert advice says it is not wise. This is from a flight attendant for a major domestic airline who is very concerned about her job ... but still doesn’t want people to fly right now.

  4. @Makenzie G Thank you! Much regards for highlighting this.The article seems to be planting a bad idea the way it is framed in the lead. And I send good vibes your way during this doubly anxious time for you. Hope that your job stays with you and the corona virus treats you kindly.

  5. @Makenzie G Nobody cares about flu like symptoms

  6. @John Brown As the husband and father of physicians on the front lines, believe me, you are so wrong.

  7. This is an incredibly selfish and disappointing choice for members of my generation to be making. Not only are they putting themselves at risk, but they're endangering their loved ones, the entire nation's population of elderly and/or immunocompromised people, and anybody with whom they come into contact on their trips (including workers and waitstaff, who may not have a choice about whether or not to come to work). Those of us who are young, physically healthy, and economically privileged enough to be able to take time off and pay for a vacation right now need to be willing to assume some responsibility for the health of our communities, even if we ourselves aren't likely to fall gravely ill.

  8. @Anna Being young is no guarantee that you won't get Covid-19, or die from it. I believe that it's a mistake for young people to believe that youth is some sort of protection against this virus, or any virus for that matter, it isn't.

  9. @James Yes, as clearly illustrated in today's article about the nurse and doctor in China, both 29 years old. Even the one who survived had a very painful time of it, and almost didn't make it.

  10. Not to sound like a boomer curmudgeon, I can understand why these younger folk want a cheap ride to paradise, but they’re forgetting the underlying serpent of contagion that they can spread to the oldsters around them. For example, my 30 year old nephew flew to Hawaii via Seattle and may be safe himself, but on his return he could give the virus to my brother who could give it to my father in a nursing home. Follow all precautions and protocol, but the life you save may not be your own but those you love.

  11. @Ichabod Aikem That is just it, they love themselves more than anyone else.

  12. If you are young and healthy you could also stay home and help your neighbors and community who might need it. Volunteer at a local hospital, school, emergency service, the Red Cross, or just help those around you that are affected,

  13. @Mike Jacobs I think these young people are being asked to work remotely, not being given time off. But yes, once their daily work is done they could pitch in. Lots of returning University kids in our neighborhood and our friends are asking if there are any jobs they can do while they are home

  14. @Mike Jacobs Nope its better to travel around and possible infect many, many, people. Isn't that what young people get to do with impunity.

  15. @Mike Jacobs good for them! lot of businesses are suffering. You help the rideshare driver, the restaurant owners, the hotel or whatever.

  16. "The next thing". Yes, I know, you thought "OK Boomer" medical professionals and officials, no big deal, I am not the at risk group. Youth always believes they are indestructible.

  17. @Heidi My friends grandfather used to say, youth is wasted on the young. Being a kid, it went over my head, last year when I turned 45, I realized what he meant. Youth really is wasted on the young, imagine if you could go back to being 25, but retain everything you've learned in 45 years of being alive. Now imagine one day being 100, and the next day, your 25, but you have 100 years of life experience to look back on, to use, imagine how different your decisions would be. The last pandemic we had was the Spanish Flu, millions died including young. Diseases like Covid-19 don't discriminate, while the old are more likely to die from it, that doesn't mean that young people won't contract it, and die as a direct result of it.

  18. @James I'm 63. You know what? I suspect that if I were 25 again, but armed with my 63 years of experience and knowledge, I'd take a LOT more risks than I did when I was actually 25. That's at least half of what the expression "youth is wasted on the young" means.

  19. @James There was a Star Trek: Next Generation episode when Picard is transmogrified (thx Hobbes, thx Calvin) into a young man. But he carries with him a view of his older self: caution where a young man would brashly proceed, using more testosterone than brains. I know I’d probably refrain now from many of the dunderheaded things I did years ago, but then again, I still do things many might call dunderheaded. One drawback about restraint in youthful years: you won’t have as many good stories should you make it to your later years.

  20. An advantage to being young and carefree while Boomers shelter in fear. You will meet adventurous travelers while the tourists stay home and contemplate their bucket lists.

  21. @Rick “You will meet other adventurous travelers”...and infect them.

  22. Young and thoughtless is more like it. Can’t you just imagine the self-congratulatory bravado of these “non-tourist” tourists as they risk spreading the virus to countless innocents? But don’t worry, kids, it’s more fatal for others! Since when is being a responsible citizen and neighbor “cowering in fear”?

  23. @Rick I've been in third world countries South America comes to mind. My traveling partner became very ill with Dengue, you know the disease transmitted by mosquitoes, the one that can kill you. He was very, very lucky to survive, it had nothing to with medical care, since there wasn't any. It was because of the locals that he survived. Being young and adventurous is one thing, being stupid and traveling when a pandemic is happening, potentially infecting many, many, more, is selfish. I hope that they wind up stuck in a foreign country unable to leave.

  24. These young people are just irresponsible. If one of them is a virus carrier, he/she will spread the virus to other people, even old people, who are more susceptible to developing acute and severe symptoms.

  25. @Vincent They forget that one day they will be the "old" ones.

  26. @Vincent Don't forget that 'old' people can be irresponsible too. If you give people the opportunity to do something that is normally out of their reach, they will inevitably take advantage of it because they can. It's up to the government to decide that domestic travel is irresponsible and take measures to prevent it.

  27. This is just selfishness. The whole point in not traveling is to protect the elderly and vulnerable, to avoid spreading this thing.

  28. Hey Hawaii ... heads-up. Coronavirus coming your way via remote working Seattleites! Bigly!

  29. You spend more than $50 on coffee and cigarettes on a weekend? I spent several years in tourism and travel related industries. Just going to point out the obvious. I see a tourist. You're the tourist. No one here is happy about your presence. Go home. Sorry you live in an infected area. That's where you live though. Tough. Tell it to refugees the next time you feel like voting Republican. I have zero sympathy.

  30. Selfish behavior.

  31. This article is an example of lack of social responsibility towards the people in risk. This is not a holiday opportunity. This is serious stuff

  32. I'll expand a previous thought with two literary references. 1) "Station Eleven" A young women is stranded sickened staring at a fleet of ships she herself is responsible for managing. 2) "A Small Place" Do you really want to be sick in a place far from home? Trips to Antigua are certainly cheap right now but have you ever wondered why your toilet paper goes in the waste bin?

  33. People who travel by air unnecessarily now are being incredibly selfish. To save a few bucks and "see the world," they are willing to pick up and spread a potentially deadly virus to the unsuspecting. Might as well get drunk, pull out a six-shooter and walk down the street blasting in the air, all the while howling USA! USA! USA!

  34. Where do public health conscience and considerations figure into these purchasers decision making .....? They seem absent! We would all be well served by national YouTube and TV videos spin by the USG explaining and re-explaining public health philosophy and attendant practices to the nation.

  35. I'm a 30-something tech worker and I find this behavior disgusting. Just because you're young and healthy doesn't give you the right to potentially bring the virus to another part of the world. It's clear these children aren't thinking of the vulnerable populations they'll potentially infect who don't have health insurance or a steady paycheck. Don't forget to pack your "selfish stick" so we can publicly shame you.

  36. @Jess Well Jess, that means that you had proper home training, that somewhere along the line your parents taught you, that there are times when the needs of the many become paramount. It's awesome to see younger person that somehow seem wiser than their years.

  37. @Jess I am also a 30-something tech worker, and I completely agree. The self-centered behavior of our industry colleagues in this article... well, I'd say it was shocking but let's be honest, are either of us really shocked?

  38. “Odds are, if I get sick, it will be like a bad flu.” And will it be like a bad flu for the elderly or immunocompromised person you potentially infect?

  39. Hubris run amok - this guy’s a smoker and apparently didn’t get the memo about respiratory damage and C-19!

  40. I am a medical student in my late 20s. This behavior of millennials is embarrassing. This is not about you, this is about global health. You might be 30 and seemingly healthy and unknowingly carry the virus, resulting in the death of those more vulnerable. Traveling right now is extremely selfish. If you are in your 20s you likely have parents, grandparents, coworkers, or friends who will be hospitalized because of this pandemic. It’s time to think about others beyond yourself.

  41. @RGH My rotations have not been cancelled. Elective surgeries have not been cancelled. It's hard to say how concerned my administration really is. Until they say something, how do I judge the severity?

  42. @RGH Oh, please. Unless you live in a very, very rural area, everybody in modern society is going to be exposed to this virus. Not taking a flight won't make any difference at all.

  43. @RGH Not to mention the fact that Joe DeSimone appears to a moderate-to-heavy smoker. Despite his age, that puts him at risk for a severe respiratory reaction to the virus, does it not?

  44. I guess it depends where you are going. I've been trying to book a ticket to Israel for August and then again in January 2021. Ticket prices have not dropped at all. In fact, El Al, the Israel national airline is still charging premium rates even as they say they are laying off 80+% of their staff. On paper, supply and demand should make all these prices drop; in reality, it ain't happin'.

  45. @Chaim Casper Same thing is supposed to happen when you give corporations a 30% tax cut. Since consumers pay 80% of corporations taxes, because those costs are built into the product or service your buying. In other words, the Apple iPhone should be 30% cheaper due to Apples tax cut. Oddly, that's not the case, Apple calls that, a rise in profits.

  46. @Chaim Casper Ditto for us. Moving to a new country this summer and the only cheapish flights have layovers in current hot zones. Singapore, Doha, Istanbul, etc. -- pricing as usual.

  47. Why is this irresponsible, selfish behavior being promoted in this way?

  48. @Paul It’s called capitalism.

  49. Traveling on the cheap during a world-wide pandemic? Fly now, pay later.

  50. We were all young, invincible and immortal once. Enjoy it. But remember - if you're one of the 20% who contract a "bad" case of COVID19, your real risk is not death - it's permanent lung damage.

  51. @Joe W Not to mention infecting everyone else.

  52. @Joe W And that's at any age....

  53. @Joe W: If he keeps smoking, he's going to get permanent lung damage anyway. (Which is not to say that he should travel. He should stay home before he potentially infects other people.)

  54. You never think it will happen to you. I hope they’re right. Especially Joe, who apparently smokes cigarettes.

  55. It’s about the common good (like vaccinations) This disregards the risks to others and seems so selfish.

  56. Living in the pandemic of the corona virus, I am simply outraged by the ignorance and arrogance of these people : there are no borders for this, you can fly wherever you want ( cheap! ) but this will also help to spread more the infection. This is serious, dangerous and deadly, just read the numbers, may be they will change their mind. The only way to delay/stop this is to stay home !

  57. Fly around and spread the disease. Hmmm, doesn't sound so savvy to me.

  58. @TLUF So I wonder what would happen if pilots started to fall ill, would the rest just stop flying, they can't work from home (many people can't). It floors me when the government says work from home, sure but many jobs can't be done remotely.

  59. “I spend more than 50 bucks on cigarettes and coffee in a weekend,” he said, “so like, why not?” Says it all.

  60. @NYT reader: Yes, and the fact that he smokes cigarettes will greatly increase the severity of his lung infection if he succumbs to the virus.

  61. @NYT reader I was thinking the same thing, if he's going through that many cigarettes, and coffee, he has bigger problems than potentially contracting the Covid-19 Virus.

  62. Why am I not surprised at all that tech company yuppies have absolutely zero regard for spreading this disease to vulnerable populations? What a pity it would be if their destination countries in South America and other regions with low infection rates implement travel bans against people from affected regions like the U.S. And the bartender from Chicago is not worried because we've "gone through ebola before"? Wow, ok.

  63. @Taylor Or, what if when they are there, that an outbreak happens and now they are trapped in a country where access to healthcare is nonexistent even for Americans. You can't fly out, now what. I've been to South America many times, and disease runs rampant and healthcare is nonexistent.

  64. @James I've also been to South America where "healthcare is nonexistent". Which is why very few cases are recorded, so it's actually an unknown in many third world countries. But they have closed the borders in Guatemala and the situation changes fast...can you imagine being stuck in Guatemala? But let them learn. Fiji sounds nice, doesn't it, I was just there...wouldn't want to be stuck in Fiji either.

  65. @thewriterstuff I recently read about the Spanish Flu and was surprised to find out (though it made sense) that places like Samoa and Fiji had a much higher infection and death rate than other places. Can you imagine being the one to bring Coronavirus to Fiji from San Francisco. Horrendous.

  66. When I was in my 20s I did a lot of questionable and downright dangerous things while traveling to and from exotic locations, dodging bandits and trigger-happy royal guards and man-eating crocodiles and tsetse flies and elephantiasis and leprosy and malaria, and even the plague. I figured, correctly, that I was pretty much the only one at risk in these adventures, and if I paid some price for misjudgments that was only fair. However, I would not do the things described in this article because they would risk bringing back pestilence to my friends and family, particularly my especially vulnerable grandparents. It would be quite a burden to carry through life, knowing that I had unnecessarily transmitted a dangerous disease to someone close to me (or even to people I didn’t know so well). Best of luck to these foolish gadabouts; they’ll need it.

  67. @Mon Ray : at age 30, these young people likely have PARENTS who are 60 or 65 years old….not to mention co-workers, friends, colleagues, people they encounter in their apartments or out shopping. The POINT in a pandemic is not just "are YOU sick" or "will YOU personally survive" -- it is how many people do you infect, with your careless selfish behavior?

  68. @Mon Ray You've got it exactly right. Doing things that put only yourself at risk, fine. Possibly spreading sickness to lots of others, not ok.

  69. Hey, Joe DeSimone! It's not just you! Yes, you'd likely recover from the coronavirus, but the person you spread it to might not! Is that really so hard to understand?

  70. While it's true that mostly folks with compromised immune systems, diabetics, and elderly will die, Mr. DeSimone forgot a group...smokers. How much exactly do you spend on smokes? Not sure I'm down with your logic, here.

  71. It’s all about him!

  72. What-aboutism at its finest!

  73. From a guy who is stuck in China during the epidemic: I was seriously thinking about going to Europe or South Korea for this extended holiday, but in the end some family issues held me up. I am so glad I didn’t go. These places are now becoming hotspots: flights are limited and everyone from these countries are subject to a long-time quarantine. So the point is: even if you’re just thinking for yourself and don’t care about the possibility of you transmitting the virus, it is possible that you’ll be stuck in your destination or experience shortage of essentials because there is a time delay in the outbreak. Nowhere except your own home is safe right now. I guess at that time the $50 tickets won’t seem so alluring.

  74. It's not being emphasized in the news, but it has been stated, more than once, that smokers are probably at higher risk for COVID complications. Which might explain why supposedly healthy young adults have died, while children are barely affected. Italy apparently still has a pretty high rate of smokers compared to many parts of the world (including the US) and in China, up to half of all men still smoke.

  75. @JanAtheCPA Maybe you should have done a couple of minutes of research before posting. According to Wikipedia, China has a significantly higher rate of smoking compared to Italy. And from what I see on the Internet, nowhere near half of men in Italy smoke.

  76. @Bill Loney Maybe you should have read JanAtheCPA's post more carefully. Jan says that Italy apparently still has a "pretty high rate of smokers" as compared to many parts of the world. As a separate point, Jan notes that 1/2 the men in China still smoke. Those two separate observations do not combine to imply that 1/2 the men in Italy smoke. The simple point is that people who are smokers appear to be more vulnerable.

  77. @JanAtheCPA I'm assuming you're referencing the quote about spending $50 a week on coffee and cigarettes?

  78. Wow. This is selfish beyond words. It's not about you, young healthy person. It's about the virus you will spread to those older or less healthy than you. Stay put. Be a responsible citizen of the world. Don't spread this virus just because you can. Beyond belief.....

  79. Inappropriate headline for irresponsible and dangerous behavior.

  80. And you plugged his business so he benefits from his irresponsibility. Great job!

  81. The NYT should not be publishing "cool" articles like this at this time. It is spreading ideas. Many didn't even know about these airline "specials." That is why the virus is really impossible to contain. With this kind of me first and complacent thinking--and then media amplifying it--it is difficult to to coordinate for the common good.

  82. Yeah that sounds about right for millennials... they will go down in history as the narcissist generation.

  83. The paranoid commentators are such a downer.

  84. You know what’s also a downer (besides ignoramuses), people who know better than scientists. Oh, right, they are one and the same.

  85. If I have the right to choose whether or not I wish to abort an unwanted child, I cannot see why anyone should have a problem with traveling outside the United States, especially so at this horrible time in our nation's history with the criminal Trump in the White House.

  86. I’m sure that makes sense to you. Trump is horrible, so it’s okay to spread a potentially fatal disease? Please don’t explain.

  87. Despicable. Are those the same people that came up with the Ok, boomer thing? Beyond vapid. Dangerous.

  88. Typical young americans care zero for anyone other than themselves especially the well off ones. No wonder they are too lazy to vote or even care about anything of importance in the world other than their own selfish fulfillment

  89. As has been said for generations..... .. the young, they are inexperienced and do not know what they do not know.... and as a result.. tend to do foolish things.

  90. This guy spends more than 50$ a weekend on cigarettes and coffee? That is objectively abhorrent

  91. Might this be the occasion to recognize the damage that jet aircraft are causing to the environment and JUST STAY HOME?

  92. As someone in Hawaii who is pregnant and terrified, I can assure them that I do not want them here. How selfish can you be to go joyriding around the globe spreading the infection? People who are vulnerable depend on the mercy (and intelligence) of others. It's too bad these people neither seem to recognize that reality nor care.

  93. @E and for many reasons like this one Italy has blocked all movements, closed airports and businesses and obliged people to stay home...

  94. @E According to what I have read, pregnant women and babies are at low risk for this virus. Take it easy.

  95. @CC I live in Hawaii and work in the hospitality industry. My 80 year old Mom lives with us, multigenerational living being the norm in Hawaii for cultural and economic reasons. I’m sure I’ll be fine if I get COVID-19 from some tourist. My Mom .... she’s a different story. I guess it sucks to be us.

  96. This quote was especially telling: “I spend more than 50 bucks on cigarettes and coffee in a weekend,” he said, “so like, why not?” So clearly he's already well accustomed to endangering his health and that of others through second-hand smoke. How about this: Wait a few weeks or months until things settle down? There will always be travel deals.

  97. It is not just us older folks that are at risk. Those with autoimmune deficiencies (which includes kids) are also at risk.

  98. While it would be amazing to take advantage of these deals, and I’m not worried about the personal consequences due to my low risk profile, it’s irresponsible to travel, particularly from an area with high rates of infection, risking spread to others who may be high risk. This is really just reinforcing the negative stereotypes some people believe about us millennials.

  99. May we please try a modified set of adjectives, such as young, confident, narcissistic, and indifferent to the consequences of their actions?

  100. Sometimes government is needed to curb behavior that is harmful to others. If we don't like these people trotting around the globe right now, do we think the government should impose restrictions to prevent nonessential travel? Or is their behavior not quite awful enough to risk further losses for the airline industry? Hmmm....

  101. @mm All vacations are non-essential.

  102. It seems like the airline industry is trying to have it both ways. They will no doubt accept coronavirus relief from the government, yet with these price reductions, they are encouraging spontaneous travel that can perpetuate the spread of the virus. By the way, not all millennials are selfish. My twenty something son and daughter have had a March trip to Hawaii planned since November. They are cancelling it in light of all that's going on. Let's hope the airline treats them fairly.

  103. Yup. It's all about you. Live it up. Have the time of your life.

  104. Oh goodie just what the world needs right now; a bunch of selfish Typhoid Mary’s traveling the globe and spreading their love.

  105. Anyone who has been buying cigarettes should not be scoffing at this virus, no matter how young they are

  106. These kids are too young to remember the AIDS epidemic. I thought the dying of friends and acquaintances would never end.

  107. Its interesting how young people use the analogy 'if I get it, it will be like a bad flu", they forget the flu kills thousands of people a year. Something else they forget, is, what if you get sick in a country that doesn't have the medical facilities to provide the healthcare your sure to need should you contract Covid-19. I'm young, and I don't want it, because I've had a bad flu, (I've since never failed to get a flu shot) and not know whether your going to live or die, and that's inside the U.S. I can tell you from personal experience there's nothing worse than your lungs filling with fluid, and having to be put into a medically induced coma in order to be intubated and put on a ventilator. Not knowing whether your going to wake up or not, is pretty scary at any age. The reason so many people in this country are so blase' about the Covid-19 virus, is because the so called POTUS has had the same approach to this virus. My question to these travelers is if Covid-19 killed young and old alike, would they feel the same way. And what happens if they are in Amsterdam and get sick and can't travel back to the U.S. It just amazes me how the needs of the one, outweigh the public needs of the many.

  108. Just had to cancel my wedding in Ireland out of safety and travel concerns. I am totally heartbroken. The idea that someone is selfishly taking advantage of this terrible situation infuriates me.

  109. @J Williams, Thank you for being responsible! I wish you a beautiful wedding when this is all over!

  110. Fact is, non essential plane travel has always been selfish. The argument put out here by so many posters is that this time you're putting lives at stake if you go flying. Not a thought previously for the environmental havoc wreaked by decades of jet travel-- the species loss, the climate disruption. One month ago, it was impossible to find even 5 percent of the anti travel posters we have now. Shame on you, as Greta would say. When this virus is over, will we all venture back into the skies, comforting ourselves in the notion that rising seas and routine 110 degree temperatures are a very distant prospect? No. This pandemic should be a training exercise for living without travel. That point should be hammered home.

  111. @AJ Amen. One lesson to take from not traveling by air during the pandemic is to carry that forth after the pandemic and very much cut back on air travel. Huge polluter

  112. @AJ Please define non-essential.

  113. @AJ I agree! One of the things I'm impressed by is how quickly people are changing their habits. Now let's apply this to climate change which is a much more catastrophic threat.

  114. I live in Hawaii. My foster daughter is a cancer survivor with an unpredictable immune system. Another friend is immune-compromised. Three words to these travelers: DON’T COME HERE! You actually threaten the lives of people I love and know by making the decision to travel in these times.

  115. @Em Hawai'i has travelers from all over the world, all the time. This virus will surface there, just as it is surfacing now in Alaska. My brother (in Seattle) tried to tell me last week that eventually the virus would arrive 'even in Fairbanks'. I had to tell him that we usually have YUGE numbers of Chinese tourists in the winter, and they take over all the hotels and restaurants and it was quite likely that Fairbanks was one of the first places to be exposed. (Lots of people crowded into warm places in thirty degree below zero weather). While it's true that the first verified cases in Alaska are only being reported now, it's also true that, in Trumpian fashion, there has been very little testing happening here. Your best choice is to self quarantine your foster daughter to the extent possible and make sure she takes whatever supplements you believe in (echinacea, goldenseal and elderberry are recommended as well as vitamins C & D), gets plenty of rest, and fresh air well away from crowded places.

  116. @Em I feel for you. I cancelled my upcoming trip to Hawaii. I thought I could drive somewhere for my vacation instead but now realize it is my responsibility to stay home, and not possibly spread it to other parts of the country.

  117. "Young, Confident and Flying, Virus Be Damned" " Young, stupid reckless , self-centered, & Flying."

  118. 20-somethings can't compute illness or how their bodies can betray them. They think they'll always be strong and able. To expect them to understand risk is hopeless. They simply cannot. Nor, is empathy very high on their radar. Understanding the risk their travels might present to others back home is also not likely. There are few highly evolved 20-somethings. These kids will just do what they do, without regard for the consequences, and the rest of us be damned.

  119. These people are everything that is wrong with my generation. Selfish and arrogant!

  120. Remind me why I shouldn't assume Millennials are the most self-absorbed, thoughtless generation of all time?

  121. Read yesterday’s WP and you’ll learn about the seniors behaving the same way: cruises, parties and safaris. It’s not an age thing. It’s an entitlement thing,

  122. @Bee Re-read the article you referred to. It was not about the entitlement of "seniors." It was about *class* and the entitled super-rich who construct health cocoons, no matter their age.

  123. A few things these selfish clowns might not have thought about : 1. They could get stuck due to a lockdown in another country, 2. They could unknowingly spread the virus during its incubation period to older and/or immunocompromised people, 3. They could spread the virus to a developing nation with a limited healthcare resources, a lack of ventilators, few ICU beds and be responsible for needless deaths, and 4. They could themselves end up in a foreign hospital!

  124. Actually #4 is not a bad outcome.

  125. I’m a young millennial flying to a beach to surf next week. Let’s hope I get “stuck.” Hahaha

  126. Why are airlines allowed to offer these pandemic flights anyway? Don't THEY have any more social responsibility than their heedless customers? They're not only helping to spread the virus, they're putting their cabin crews and airport employees at risk too.

  127. @Emma Ess The airlines are businesses that employee hundreds of thousands of people. These people would almost instantly be out of a job if air travel was banned and may not be able to afford food or healthcare. They take people not only to work from Hawaii but also to their family members, or perhaps there are doctors on board that need to get to virus hot spots in the country. It's easy to see only the most immediate and scary threat. But someone needs to see the bigger picture.

  128. @Daniel The bigger picture is that they needlessly contribute to climate change and the spread of the virus.

  129. @Daniel The bigger picture is that they needlessly contribute to climate change and the spread of the virus.

  130. The "me" generation at its finest. Not caring one whit about potentially spreading a deadly virus to other communities or to more vulnerable people. Seriously, what is wrong these people that can't give consideration to anything beyond their own narrow self-interests?

  131. It’s not just this generation. Another esteemed outlet has reported on Seniors insisting on “living their lives” by holding parties, booking cruises and safaris. Selfishness and arrogance has no age limit.

  132. Just a non-mathematical version of vector calculus. This adaptation doesn't require any social responsible thought, just reckless action.

  133. I already had bookings for my Europe summer vacation, and am facing the hard facts: even if I were to be asymptomatic - which I doubt, given how badly the flu hits me - it would be a logistical nightmare to be quarantined away from home. Couldn’t stay in a hotel long-term (even if I could afford it), unfair to the staff and other clients. Couldn’t stay with friends, or even airbnb, for the same reason. How will I feed myself if I am supposed to stay away from people? At home it’s possible to prepare for that eventuality, not to mention have internet access, etc. I’d have to be critically ill to be hospitalized, which of course is not a preferable option. The only upside I can see, until Trump’s promises regarding testing come true, is that I would be more likely to get tested abroad than at home!

  134. This is just gross. You may not get sick but you could be spreading the virus to those who will get sick and die from it. I am so proud of my thirty something daughter right now. She lives in a upper west side building with a significant elderly population. She is doing everything possible to stay away from crowds and behave responsibly. She had access through work to order a case of Clorox wipes and handed a tub to the doormen in her building. It’s not always about having fun, guys. And while you won’t die from corona, it looks like you are headed to death by cigarette!

  135. I'd do it to but with one concern: still need to get through airports at both ends while flight attendants and baggage handlers might be the worst carriers of COVID-19 among us. But I certainly don't fault people willing to take the risk. Have fun!

  136. @Johnno "I'd do it to[o]" "I certainly don't fault people willing to take the risk. Have fun!" This is not mountain climbing or tight-rope walking. It's not about taking a personal risk. It's about spreading disease - to others. How did America come to produce such egocentric spoiled brats?

  137. @Johnno It's a community risk as well as a personal risk. The behavior is selfish and ignorant. No concern for exposing lethal doses to susceptible populations if you most likely will just experience a mild flu.

  138. @Drew Wait! I agree with that, although I wasn't clear in my comment. I should have been. One of the biggest reasons I wouldn't do this is that I increase the probability that I become a carrier. On the other hand, if the idea is to go somewhere and isolate oneself then you lower the chances of being exposed. If there was a way to ensure I didn't pick it up at airports or in flight or other sorts of transportation then I'd be all for it!

  139. If the Chinese mortality rate for younger people is 0.2%, and milder cases may not have been reported, that would mean the actual mortality rate is even lower than 0.2% for this age group. From age 25 to 45, I rode a motorcycle, for a total of 200,000 miles. I had some minor mishaps, none serious. I suspect, in that 20 years of motorcycling, my chances of a very serious or fatal accident was probably over 0.2%. As I got older than 45, I could see my reactions slowing, and transitioned to automobiles. But 0.2% is one out of 500. Your odds are worse trying to cross Queens Boulevard on foot.

  140. @RM "But 0.2% is one out of 500. Your odds are worse trying to cross Queens Boulevard on foot." I don't know Queens Blvd, but if 1 in 500 people crossing it are killed, it must be terribly dangerous!

  141. @RM With the evidence of mass graves and few healthy people to man the factories, the number of infected and dead are likely higher than what is being reported. Of the major hot spots, I fear Italy is the only one telling the truth.

  142. I echo Mike Jacobs's comments ; Where is the Sense of Community, or the Sense of Social Responsibility ?? In a trying and stressful time like this, every able-bodied individual has to search his or her soul, and ask themselves - If they can be Compassionate and Show Loving Kindness- to themselves, and to their neighbours, and co-travellers (on the public transit, and on the streets). It is easy and irresponsible (in my opinion) to "run away" from the problem, and to be self-centered, and to perhaps be a "silent carrier" of the virus, and , as E in Hawaii noted, infect some other poor (and pregnant, or elderly and frail,souls at their destination, or on the airplane. Come on people - it is never too late to "do the right thing" !!

  143. I've been traveling for 7 years, when this started I booked flights back to Canada. I was in Australia and had a stop in Fiji. Hotel neighbors in Fiji had gotten out of China before the travel ban, they weren't alone. My flight through Hong Kong, was cancelled, then my flight through Singapore was cancelled. I had to fly to Auckland to get back to Canada, but things were moving so quickly that flights were unavailable. By then I had been on 5 planes in 10 days. I'm over 60 and was surprised and dismayed by the cavalier attitude of my younger friends. I worried a little for myself, but was careful, in case I'd picked something up. The friend I stay with has a compromised immune system another has cancer. I opted to take over a friend's house in another town who was traveling...I did suggest to him, that he shouldn't go. There were tons of unknowns, canceled flights, changed policies. I saw a Dutch couple denied boarding because they didn't have a transit visa through the US...cost $800. I saw people stranded, because their flights had been canceled while in the air. I've traveled to 90 countries...I can guarantee you that there are about 70 I wouldn't want to get stuck in. I had my fingers crossed and got back to Canada...I opted not to go to the US, because as far as medical it is a 3rd world country. I'm in self-quarantine now and grateful. I would not travel now, no matter how cheap. I have been stuck in the Moscow terminal, unable to leave without a visa.

  144. I am astounded by the correlation of $50 for smokes and coffee a weekend vs. travel, so why not? Um, but frankly, eugh .... This epidemic, is not "spring break". Sure, as a youth take what you can of it, but also get over yourself, grow up and take a look around. Many people are scared and potentially suffering.

  145. It's called "risk assessment" and is a necessary component of all decision making. The risk of contracting Coronavirus may be about equal to many of the other risks in travel...or even staying home. Most of the time we are blind to these risks, but the heightened awareness of this virus can create a distorted impression of the actual risk. Under the current circumstances, the greatest risk to travelers is probably secondary disruptions due to unpredictable flight delays/cancellations, closed museums and public facilities, the risk of government imposed quarantines, arbitrary or not. It all depends on where you are going and when. I call it "crisis tourism", which can be rewarding in some cases, particularly when political or economic disruptions create a perception of risk where the actual risk has been exaggerated by fearful public opinion or negative press. Risk induces fear, and overcoming fear is, in itself, edifying. Still, self preservation requires doing some homework, and an astute assessment of all possible risk factors.

  146. @Reed Erskine Interesting that you frame it as risk *to travellers*, since at least half the point of social distancing, etc., is having some consideration for all the others one might potentially infect, especially if you don't have symptoms. The reason it's considered a global pandemic is because it's . . . global . . . so I guess we can look forward to places like Hawaii becoming the next viral hotspots. But hey, 50 bucks.

  147. The problem is that “risk assessment” seldom considers moral hazard, e.g the likelihood of acting as a vector for CV that’s ultimately leads to *someone else* who is more susceptible becoming critically ill. It is the public health risk that must be considered, not the risk to the traveler.

  148. Sure. Risk assessment is a part of everyday life, no less when confronting a communicable disease with many unknown parameters that clouds those calculations. There’s also civic and social responsibility. I’m not surprised that the latter is absent for those looking for a cheap ‘grammable experience.

  149. I want to know why airlines are continuing these commercial flights between affected countries and putting everyone's lives at risk, including their employees. Are they not waking up to the fact that this is a GLOBAL pandemic and they are contributing to the surest way this virus will spread to all regions of the world?

  150. I agree. I think I would have the utmost respect for an airline that paused flights or temporarily suspended flights for the sake of the public good. so far it seems they just want to make money, not caring for their passengers as their lame emails suggest.

  151. @ag13 You could have the utmost respect but that respect doesn't pay their employees or other expenses. And I doubt you'd be willing to pay a premium to fly them for your next trip.

  152. It is telling that Mr. DeSimone, as reported here, considers the risk to no one other than himself.

  153. And that the $50.00 plane ticket is less then spends on cigarettes.

  154. The lady who checked me out at the grocery store tonight was easily closer to 80 than 70, working at 8 PM! While I loaded my groceries onto the belt wearing nitrile gloves, she went about it all normally. My heart bleeds that she had to be doing this job at her age and couldn't just stay at home. Let's not forget that a lot of seniors are unable to subsist on their Social Security checks and must go to work in low wage jobs, at great risk to their health today. I'm 70 and if I had to stand behind a cash register for a 6-8 hour shift, I'd be weeping and hope the virus took me quickly. The deeper we get into this, the more Andrew Yang's $1000/month per citizen looks really really good. He should jump back into the race.

  155. @Karen K Thank you for this. I have noticed the same: the people patiently working the extra long hours at overrun shops seem to be in the most threatened groups, and also to be the calmest. But what choice do they have, really? No one's letting them 'work from home'.

  156. @Karen K, I agree with you 100%!!

  157. @Karen K we had a mid-80’s cashier at our local drugstore. She said she far preferred working to being lonely at home. She was part-time.

  158. It isn't just about risk to oneself, it is also about risk of infection to and from those around you. The fact that people have been directed to work from home, is not free license to go on holiday. A pandemic is not just another snow day, cheap fares or not.

  159. Well, profit is profit and one can hardly fault a profit-based economic system for pursuing profit. Duh. As for customers in general and young people in particular, we/they all thought/think we're/were immortal. I didn't have a clue about mortality until roughly age 40. As for social responsibility--i.e. not transmitting a communicable disease--social responsibility hasn't had much currency in America since Reagan unless it's connected to either Supporting The Military or something allegedly "christian". After all, this phenomenon is only a more catastrophic version of people booking Caribbean cruises August-October. Something about crooked timber of something comes to mind.

  160. What a difference a few decades make. I traveled the rugged road through exotic locales and third world countries when I was in my 20’s and early 30’s...but you couldn’t pay me to get on a plane right now. Young people believe that they’re immune, invincible. All it takes is one potentially life-threatening illness to rid them of that notion.

  161. @Susanna It's like what Mike Tyson once said: "everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth"

  162. I’m ordered to work from home next week. I’m off to FL to visit my parents and work there. 500 ppl in NYS have been infected out of how many million?? Most have very mild symptoms. Also, my parents are not in a bubble in FL. They are interacting with ppl down there too. Hello sunshine!

  163. @AW Hopefully you won't give it to them but it sounds like they will catch it on their own.

  164. I can see why some countries have managed to contain the Corona virus and why the US is going to have a difficult time. It takes people who are committed and who care for others, not just for themselves. I am appalled at the attitude of these millennial.

  165. I love the Hawaiian beaches, Ono sandwiches in the ABC corner stores, higher-class seafood in restaurants, but I hate the check-in procedures at airports. Saying nothing of the 8 to 10 hours on the plane.

  166. Many people are complaining about “this generation” meanwhile other respected outlets are reporting on seniors insisting on living their best lives by flouting social distancing, throwing senior home parties, booking cruises and other events. One senior said that is she gets stuck on a cruise it will only extend her vacation. Young or old, anyone leisure travelling right now should be the last attended to if they come back sick. They’re clearly making a choice knowing the current situation.

  167. The messaging in America that the virus only affects the sick and elderly is wrong and that is what is causing such behaviours among the young. In Singapore, we have had 200 cases of which 103 are still hospitalised (so no, it’s more than a “bad flu”). The median age of affected patients is 47. That is certainly far from “elderly”. We are also recently seeing more imported cases due to people who travel and return from Europe, US and other parts of Asia.

  168. Doesn’t anyone remember what it feels like to be 20, invincible, and the owner of a skinny wallet?

  169. @Sgallagher Empty wallet yes, but that arrogant and self centered no. I was a HAZMAT 1st responder and in the USAF at that age. My brother and sister were in the Air Force.

  170. @Sgallagher yes, I remember, but I had a moral compass too. I would never have done something so reckless as travel during a global pandemic.

  171. I wanted to visit my partner but ended up cancelling my flight. My concern is not that I will contract the virus--which is what those interviewed here seem to worry about--but that I will communicate the virus to others. Without testing, it's difficult to know whether I may be a carrier or whether I will contract it in the process of flying. Especially because I'm leaving from NYC, I am not confident that I won't be a risk to others. That amount of uncertainty, especially when it involves the health of others, was enough for me to cancel a long-desired trip to visit my partner. I hope that others will think about their social responsibility as they make flight decisions. Some flights cannot be avoided, but perhaps others can.

  172. Fifty bucks on coffee and cigarettes is only 4 coffees and one pack of smokes!

  173. @Julia Williamson Geez, how much are your coffees down there (as I see that cigarettes cost around $5.50 a pack in Florida)?

  174. Yesterday in Galveston, thousands of passengers boarded a Carnival cruise lines vessel for Mexico. When asked by reporters several passengers said media hysteria was overblowing whatever threat may really exist. Delta just suspended all flight to and from Europe. Maybe a moratorium on cruises which are floating incubators for pathogens?

  175. I'm a millennial and this is not common behavior. Most of my peers are following quarantine guidelines, working from home, and engaging in "social distancing." I think this story was written to drum up disgust and outrage. I don't think it's the actual state of things.

  176. Not only that, but these attributions have always been made of the young in any era.

  177. Leaving aside the sheer selfishness and immorality of their behaviour, why on earth would these "young, confident" people want to travel during a pandemic when all they will see (most likely wherever their cheap flights will take them) are ghost-towns, no social gatherings, restaurants that are emptied out, locals who will eye them with mistrust and loathing (rightly so!) for potentially being yet another virus-carrier, and a generally miserable, depressing. soulless atmosphere where everyone is quarantined or self-isolating or socially distancing? Isn't the point of travel to be in a place where the atmosphere is lively (or soothingly pleasant), the locals are welcoming, and places are actually open for business? What enjoyment are they going to find at their destinations in these times?

  178. While I strongly disagree with their decision to travel, I do see some of the logic in it. If you need to self isolate why not do it near a Hawaiian beach rather then in your tiny apartment in NYC etc?

  179. This is the big problem in the Trump era where we no longer are asked to make sacrifices for our country or others. Not one of these millennials deigned to think how their travel might affect the health of others. While I have sympathy for the inequalities some of these young people have endured, it is mind blowing that the interviewees only viewed consequences regarding themselves. #disgusted

  180. They may recover easily if infected but what about the at risk folks they might pass the virus on to.

  181. I wonder if any of them ever had parents or grandparents or met anyone with cancer or diabetes? Apparently not.

  182. Have these people thought about the possiblity of bringing a disaster to paradise? it's been done repeated by those that care first and foremost about their personal gains rather than a greater good putting innocent hard working people native to paradise at risk. Shame on them for profiting by posing risk to others. I for one, put off my regular trips to caring for my 90 yr. old parents for want of not causing further havoc to them or even in transit. Pandemics are not a cause for people to self-reward themselves with pleasure deals at the expense of others. The airlines should also take this into account. So unfortunate we live in such a selfish world.

  183. “I spend more than 50 bucks on cigarettes and coffee in a weekend,” he said, “so like, why not?” That kind of says it all, doesn't it.

  184. Cigarettes coat $13 a pack in New York City. They were $1 a pack when Boomers were young, but now they are heavily taxed to pay Boomer health costs from smoking cheap cigarettes. $50 won’t buy you 4 packs today.

  185. It appears as if the risk of getting really sick for healthy young people is really low, so take advantage. But you are at an increased risk of actully contracting the virus and becoming a carrier, and thereby spreading the disease. So, stay away from vulnerable people like my wife and I, or anyplace we may need to go. Think about that last bit for a moment before you take advantage of this great "opportunity."

  186. This article insinuates that Hawaii is safe to visit because there are no cases here. Not true.

  187. Joe DeSimone, if you are lucky and strong, you will be old someday. For now you are just a piece of work.

  188. Just read the headline and thought that their needs to be some legal accountability for those gleefully flouting their social responsibility.

  189. Hey, if I wasn't a 68 year old old bat, I'd do the same. Take advantage of it young people & go see the world. Good for you.

  190. They’re not likely to get it, or to get it badly, so they run around having fun while merrily spreading the virus—which is only harmful to people who are not them, so who cares? Woo!

  191. So much for the social-minded greenish millennial. Sudden no worries about climate change or spreading the virus around the world. But if I (the baby boomer) have to fly to make a living, it’s all evil.

  192. Totally irresponsible, immature, un-civic behavior - shame on them.

  193. Wow. This feels like the epitome of selfishness to me. Yes, opportunistic Millennials, you can probably be exposed to coronavirus and face few ill effects. But what about everybody else you come in contact with along the way? Your parents, grandparents, the old guy who uses the ATM after you? Is a $150 airfare really worth it? If you want to do something special during a worldwide pandemic, how about giving blood or seeing if your local Council on Aging or food pantry needs some help.

  194. This kind of selfishness makes me sick to the stomach! Do these young people REALLY not know that they are actively contributing to the spread of the virus which, in the worst case, could lead to the possible collapse of health care systems around the world?! Or do they simply not care? Does Mr. DeSimone et al. not mind the possibility of carrying the virus to all his destinations and infecting scores of people who are more at risk than he is? Does he have any idea how dumb and unattractive he sounds?

  195. Whoopee we're all going die. But not us healthy ones, probably. We will live forever. Too bad for those we may infect. Ya been around too long boomer, too bad. And hey, I won't have to pay off my student loan. To be able to ski fresh powder in Utah, I'd consider. That was my twenty seven year old self talking eons ago.

  196. Perhaps the companies/individuals who are offering these low prices on travel should be singled out for their greed and total disregard for the health of all those whose health may be, at this time, compromised for only the dollar. Shame on DeSimone and all of his ilk.

  197. this generation is so irony poisoned and arrogant that nothing will stop them from self indulgence. some of these comments are putrid, selfish, all they can see is themselves in the equation. "Even if I get sick I am healthy" but nothing about passing the germs on to anyone else, even in these comments. I resisted it for some time but this crisis really shows that Millennials truly deserve our reputation as entitled, self involved misanthropes.

  198. I haven't even read the article yet, I can't get past the photo caption "...why not do it in Hawaii"? Marco Garcia and Jonathan Wolfe, the answer is because we are a very small island state with extraordinary limited resources and a larger population of older folks than many of the cities on the mainland. Working from our beaches means increasing the risk that our vulnerable elderly population will be indirectly exposed to COVID-19 through contact with the sales clerks, rental car agents, and hotel valets they are all related to, and probably live with. Please, please, please - as the rest of the country shuts down to help limit the speed and spread of this virulent new illness - please do not promote Hawaii as a place to escape our collective reality. Please, spread the aloha by coming to visit us when the risk has passed, and we will come to visit you then, too.

  199. I didn’t expect the examples of “young” people to be in their 30’s. It’s really about single people who don’t have a partner or children to worry about.

  200. It's clear the message is not getting out: all but essential travel needs to end. Shame on the airlines for continuing to peddle these flights and shame on these knuckleheads for only thinking of themselves.

  201. This is not going to help combat the narrative that millennials are preternaturally self-concerned.

  202. Why not..? IF people expect the world to suddenly grind to a halt because of the virus... they're kidding themselves.

  203. A 30-year-old smoker thinks if he gets covid-19 it won't be so bad? Does he know this virus is much harder on smokers and people with damaged lungs? Evidently not.

  204. This is appalling. What about their family, friends and trail of innocent people they’ll infect in their wake? STAY HOME. You could become infected and not exhibit symptoms. Then you come home and give it to your mom, your dad, your friends, your coworkers and so on... And if any one of those people are over 60 or immune compromised, there’s a very good chance they will DIE. Is that really worth it? All for a cheap flight so you could go on vaca?

  205. I'm embarrassed to be from their generation. This is a global pandemic. It's not about you "seeing the world." You could be carrying the virus on your globe-hopping and spreading it to those more vulnerable. Absolutely stunned all flights aren't grounded for the time being.

  206. Shouldn't there be a "coronavirus surcharge" on all international airline tickets? Say $1,000 dedicated to healthcare?

  207. Maybe these are the ambivalent Progressives who got up in the morning with the intention of voting for Bernie, but got distracted by something on NPR and didn't make it out the door.

  208. as a gen z, this is so untrue i sat in my seat, dumbfounded, for 2 whole minutes, at a complete loss for words. Most of us have a good sense of how this virus can spread and the dangers that it poses to those of weaker health, and thus take precautions not to endanger ourselves, our loved ones, or our community, especially for such a foolish reason. as for those who do,( a slim minority ) how irresponsible!

  209. Be sure to give your grandparents a big hug *before* you leave on your first trip; they won’t be around forever!

  210. Most people see no more than is what is in front of them. If it is not there in the physical present, many simply cannot imagine it. Remember that the average person has an IQ of 100, and half are below average. Add to that the fact that the young think they are bullet-proof ( as I doctor I can tell you that they are not), and there we have it. The vast majority of these folks will not get sick and die. They will be simply unable to imagine other could-have-beens.

  211. I find this a surprisingly conventional version of, Find the Worst Millennial in the World, and Then Pretend That Millennial is an Avatar for all Millennials. Catnip for readers, but a bit unfair to Millennials. We could find a Boomer that is horrible, too, if we really tried.

  212. @Tom Thumb Agree. Joey especially takes the cake, boasting about how much he spends on cigarettes (and coffee), which to my mind consigns him to idiot status, which has nothing to do with his age. If I were young and healthy, and had no one to care for, I'd be sorely tempted. Part of what this is about is that many people cannot afford travel, yet see tempting stories and ads everywhere, and may have always had the desire. They aren't the privileged who can retreat to their country or seaside estates . . .

  213. If a cruise liner offered a month round-the world trip deal, I wouldn't think twice taking it. It beats jostling over empty shelves at super markets for toilet paper rolls and hand sanitizers.