Every year more and more Tourists are traveling internationally — for vacation, business, and volunteerism, and to visit friends and family. Whatever your reason for traveling, the information on this page will help you to be Proactive, Prepared, and Protected when it comes to your health—and the health of others—while you are traveling.
BEFORE YOU GO
Research basic information about your destination
Leave a copy of your itinerary with a trusted family member or friend
Make a list of important emergency information
Go over basic safety information, rules, and procedures, such as what to do if you get lost or sick
- Stay Connected, Before you leave home, find out whether your mobile phone has roaming capabilities at your destination. If not, or if the roaming cost is prohibitive, rent a phone once you arrive (or buy international SIM cards if you have an unlocked GSM phone) so you have a lifeline. Smartphone’s outfitted with GPS or online maps are good options for drivers. It is important to practice healthy behaviors during your trip and after you return home. This section outlines how you can protect yourself and others from illness during your trip.
- Keep Others Apprised of Your Daily Itinerary, Regularly let people know where you’re going — including friends and family back home and your innkeeper or hotel concierge. When traveling alone into parkland or wilderness, always let someone know when you expect to return as well as your exact route — and then stick to it. No one wants to think about getting sick or hurt during a trip, but sometimes these things happen. You may not be able to prevent every illness or injury, but you can plan ahead to be able to deal with them.
- Stash Money, Credit Cards and Passport in Separate Places, Keep some money and credit cards in your wallet or purse, and additional money and cards in a pocket or money pouch. When sightseeing, carry only a copy of your passport’s data page, keeping your passport locked in your hotel safe. On travel days, carry your passport separately from your money and credit cards. check the status of your flight before heading the airport. Most airlines want you to check in at least an hour (two hours for international flights) before your flight is scheduled to depart.
- Ensure Your Lodgings Are Safe- Keep your door locked, with the security chain fastened. Try to snag a room close to where the action is — near the concierge desk, say, or near elevators. Stay away from ground floors where window entry is possible. Don’t answer the door if you’re not expecting anyone. Take hotel room keys with you to the pool or spa. Place valuables in a safe and get a receipt. Check the hotel’s insurance liability limit.
- Stay Healthy Is the water safe to drink? Are poisonous snakes or spiders a problem? Are mosquitoes a health issue? Does your dive operator have a stellar safety record? Bring an extra supply of prescription medications and an extra script (with the generic drug name rather than the brand name). And don’t forget hand sanitizer.
- Keep Your Wits About You, Traveling alone doesn’t mean cowering in a hotel room. Venturing into unknown territory is one of the thrills of travel. But don’t let yourself get so distracted by sights and sounds (or recording every moment on camera or cell phone) that you let your guard down. Of all the travel-alone safety tips, this is the most important: Don’t leave common sense at home.
- Do not carry large quantities of cash. Traveler’s checks provide personal security and can be replaced. Do not carry jewelry, wallets, or purses—wear a non-visible money belt. Transfer money from your money belt to pockets in your hotel room or in a bathroom.
- Use your dress and appearance to blend in with the crowd. Take the time to research local dress codes, so as not to stand out. Once you have arrived, keep your airline tickets in a separate, secure location from your passport. Also, remember your credit card number is on your airline ticket!
- When traveling to a foreign country, always carry the required travel documents such as your passport, visa and tourist cards. Be aware of local scam artists; always assume you are being watched. Always inform others of your plans (family, consulate/embassy).
- If mugged, cooperate with the assailant and voice your willingness to comply by saying, “You can have anything you want. Do you want me to get it or do you want to get it?” Avoid eye contact. Keep $25-$100 in your pocket as insurance. If hostile, offer additional money or possessions that the robber may have overlooked.Keep your camera hidden until you are ready to use it. Use tote bags instead of camera bags. Do not hang your camera around your neck. Avoid viewing maps in wide-open spaces.
* Information on the traditional uses and properties of herbs/ animals/ yoga/ places are provided on this site is for educational use only, and is not intended as medical advice. all image credit goes to their Photographers.