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Spring break could look very different this year amid pandemic

Last year, when spring break hit right as the coronavirus pandemic was exploding, pictures of college students crowded on beaches quickly made headlines.
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closeup of a young caucasian man packing some blue disposable face masks in his suitcase, packed with different clothes, such as swim trunks or a striped beach towel

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Spring break could look very different this year.

Last year, when spring break hit right as the coronavirus pandemic was exploding, pictures of college students crowded on beaches quickly made headlines. 

In an effort to avoid a repeat this year, some colleges are taking an extraordinary step, canceling spring break. 

That doesn't mean kids won't get any time off.

RELATED: Charlotte's COVID-19 metrics are heading in the right direction. Health leaders hope people still take COVID-19 seriously over spring break.

Instead, places like The University of South Carolina are scattering days off throughout the semester.

Other schools are trying to offer students incentives to avoid the urge to travel. And by incentives, we mean cold hard cash.  

The University of California at Davis is offering $75 staycation grants to students staying in town. 

Other schools are offering on-campus events like pool parties and petting zoos -- to try and discourage travel.

Despite these efforts, travel experts still think there will be plenty of college kids packing beaches across the country. And they will probably have some company. 

Now that older Americans are getting vaccinated, they are starting to travel more.

So you can expect to see some senior citizens alongside college seniors on those beaches.

RELATED: 'If this feels serious, it’s because it is' | Duke undergraduate students placed under stay-in-place mandate