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Stuck in paradise: Vaccinated St. Louis County woman gets COVID-19, forced to quarantine in Mexico

Denise Jadali’s vacation resort room is now her quarantine area after testing positive for COVID-19 near the end of her trip to Los Cabos, Mexico

ST. LOUIS — A dream vacation turned into what could have been a nightmare situation. 

One woman from St. Louis County went on an international vacation that’s now lasting much longer than she planned because she tested positive for COVID-19.

Denise Jadali’s vacation resort room is now her quarantine area after testing positive for COVID-19 near the end of her trip to Los Cabos, Mexico.

5 On Your Side talked with Denise virtually Monday. 

"So actually someone sent me an article right before we left saying that cases were up and resort areas and one of the reasons we came to Mexico right now is because you didn't have to have a negative test to get in," she said.

Like thousands of other Americans, she and her husband were excited to get to Mexico. They were supposed to be back in St. Louis County Sunday, but Denise isn’t going anywhere until she’s cleared to travel. 

“A couple places I've let my guard down and now I'm paying the price for it, but thankfully I'm not too sick and I'm vaccinated," she said. "I have mostly like cold symptoms I don't think it's even in my lungs I think it's all up here (gestures to head)."

Both Denise and her husband are fully vaccinated. 

"You know I felt pretty good being vaccinated. But, with this new delta variant it's, I think it's quite easy to get it, even if you're vaccinated, you just hopefully won't get as sick."

Her husband tested negative, but is staying at the resort at a discounted rate to be close to Denise. 

"My husband's very sweet," she said. "Take a look. He sent me these flowers they sent me some balloons... You know, he smuggles me an ice cream."

“I'm hoping to be able to come home by the end of the week, we canceled our flight, but they said, you know, they would leave it open," she said. "it’s probably going to be more expensive than we thought. But, you know, as long as I don't end up in the hospital or anything or and he doesn't get sick... I'll be OK with that.

What experts are calling ‘breakthrough COVID cases’ have become a concern. People who are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 can still get the virus.

RELATED: What is a COVID-19 vaccine 'breakthrough' case?

But, it’s pretty rare. Since January, less than 1 percent of vaccinated people have tested positive for COVID, And 99.99% of those cases haven’t been deadly.

Heading out to your destination might be a breeze. But, getting back home could bring some challenges. 

All air passengers, including U.S. citizens and fully vaccinated people, must have a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 3 days before their returning flight. 

Denise was attempting to pass this test when she found out she had COVID. 

Travelers can also show documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 3 months before they’re allowed back into the country. 

“I think it's my own fault. I can't blame anybody, but myself, because I knew the risk, and I did it anyway because I was having fun," Denise said. "I'm very blessed, you know. I mean this could have been a nightmare but it's just inconvenient.”

Denise wants people to know this could happen to them.

She took to Facebook to tell her story. 

“I just hope other people learn from my mistakes, you know," she said. "Definitely get vaccinated, definitely keep your mask on in public.”

Denise said she should be getting another COVID test in a few days. 

Click here for the latest CDC guidelines on international travel. 

The CDC is recommending that you don’t travel unless you’re fully vaccinated. If you don’t have your shots and still need to travel, you should get tested before and after your trip and wear a mask.

If you are vaccinated, you still need to wear a mask.

Be sure to check the COVID-19 numbers ahead of your trip for the location you’re headed to, especially with these new variants, and get tested up to 3 days after you get back in town.