While COVID-19 and the flu are both viral illnesses that primarily affect the respiratory tract, they are caused by different viruses, and the possibility of contracting both at the same time does exist. Both viruses have similar symptoms such as fever and cough, but they also have some differences. You may experience loss of taste or smell which is more common with COVID-19. Additionally, symptoms of COVID-19 generally appear around 5 days after exposure but can appear as long as 14 days after. Flu symptoms typically appear between 1 and 4 days after exposure. One thing is for sure—getting your flu shot this year is exceptionally more important.