Travel Information

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travel tips and resources...



Before you travel, take steps to prepare so you can stay safe and healthy during your trip.

Check CDC’s destination pages for travel health information. Check CDC’s webpage for your destination to see what vaccines or medicines you may need and what diseases or health risks are a concern at your destination.


Make sure you are up-to-date on all of your route vaccines.
Routine vaccinations protect you from infectious diseases such as measles that can spread quickly in groups of unvaccinated people. Many diseases prevented by routine vaccination are not common in the United States but are still common in other countries.

We encourage you to review this link with additional helpful information… 

Know Your Health Status

Make an appointment with your healthcare provider or a travel health specialist that takes place at least one month before you leave. They can help you get destination-specific vaccines, medicines, and information. Discussing your health concerns, itinerary, and planned activities with your provider allows them to give more specific advice and recommendations.

Learn About Blood Clots

Airplane travel, especially flights longer than 4 hours, may increase your risk for blood clots, including deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism. Learn how to prevent blood clots during travel.

Share the following information about yourself or your trip with your provider.

  • Special conditions such as pregnancy, allergies, or chronic health problems.

  • Destinations on your itinerary.

  • Type of accommodations (hotels, hostels, short term rentals).

  • Type of travel (cruise, business, adventure travel).

  • Timing and length of your trip.

  • Planned activities.

Take recommended medicines as directed. If your doctor prescribes medicine for you, take the medicine as directed before, during, and after travel. Counterfeit drugs are common in some countries, so only take medicine that you bring from home and make sure to pack enough for the duration of your trip, plus extra in case of travel delays. Learn more about traveling abroad with medicine here.

Plan for the Unexpected

Sometimes unexpected issues occur during travel. Learn what you can do before you leave to protect yourself and your travel companions.

Get travel insurance. Find out if your health insurance covers medical care abroad. Travelers are usually responsible for paying hospital and other medical expenses out of pocket at most destinations. Make sure you have a plan to get care overseas, in case you need it. Consider buying additional insurance that covers health care and emergency evacuation, especially if you will be traveling to remote areas.

There are different types of travel insurance such as trip cancellation insurance, travel health insurance and medical evacuation insurance. Learn more about travel insurance.

Enroll with the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program

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 (STEP). Check for and monitor any travel advisories for your destination. Enrolling also ensures that the US Department of State

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 knows where you are if you have serious legal, medical, or financial difficulties while traveling. In the event of an emergency at home, STEP can also help friends and family contact you.

Prepare for emergencies. Leave copies of important travel documents (e.g. itinerary, contact information, credit cards, passport, proof of school enrollment) with someone at home, in case you lose them during travel. Make sure someone at home knows how to reach you in an emergency. Carry your emergency contacts with you at all times.

Some other tips to prepare for emergencies:

  • Write down the contact information of people or services you may need while abroad.

  • Check in with someone regularly during your trip.

  • Contact your local US embassy, consulate, or diplomatic missionExternal Link
    . They are available 24/7 with emergency assistance for US citizens.

    • Dial 1-888-407-4747 if calling from the United States or Canada,

    • Dial 00 1 202-501-4444 if calling from overseas, or

    • Let family members know they can contact the embassy or consulate for help if they are worried about your safety while abroad.

Prepare a travel health kit with items you may need, especially those items that may be difficult to find at your destination. Include your prescriptions and over-the-counter medicines in your travel health kit and take enough to last your entire trip, plus extra in case of travel delays. Depending on your destination you may also want to pack a maskinsect repellent, sunscreen (SPF15 or higher), aloe, alcohol-based hand sanitizer, water disinfection tablets, and your health insurance card.


Take steps during travel to stay safe and healthy and avoid experiences that might ruin your trip.

Wash Your Hands

Regular handwashing is one of the best ways to remove germs, avoid getting sick, and prevent the spread of germs to others. Wash your hands and take other precautions to prevent getting and spreading diseases while traveling:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands. If you need to touch your face, make sure your hands are clean.

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze.

  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.

  • If you get sick during travel, stay in your accommodations, unless you need medical care.

Choose Safe Transportation

Motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death among travelers. In many middle- or low-income destinations, there may be poor road surfaces, roads without shoulders, unprotected curves and cliffs, or no streetlights. In some destinations traffic laws and road signs may not be regularly followed. Follow these tips to reduce your risk of getting injured:

  • Always wear a seat belt.

  • Don’t drive at night, especially in unfamiliar or rural areas.

  • Do not ride motorcycles. If you must ride a motorcycle, wear a helmet.

  • Know local traffic laws before you get behind the wheel.

  • Do not drink and drive.

  • Only ride in marked taxis that have seatbelts.

  • Avoid overcrowded, overweight, or top-heavy buses or vans.

  • Be alert when crossing the street, especially in countries where people drive on the left.

Prevent Bug Bites

On your trip, use insect repellent and take other steps to avoid bug bites. Bugs, including mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, and flies, can spread diseases such as malaria, yellow fever, Zika, dengue, chikungunya, and Lyme.

  • Use an EPA-registered insect repellent with one of the following active ingredients: DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus/para-menthane-diol, or 2-undecanone.

  • Always apply sunscreen first, let it dry, and then apply insect repellent. Be sure to follow instructions on the label and re-apply both as directed.

  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when outdoors.

Choose Safe Food and Drinks

Contaminated food or drinks can cause travelers’ diarrhea and other diseases and disrupt your travel. Travelers to low or middle income destinations are especially at risk. Choose safer food and drinks to prevent getting sick.

  • Eat foods that have been fully cooked and served hot.

  • Do not eat fresh vegetables or fruits unless you can wash or peel them yourself.

  • Drink only bottled, sealed beverages, and avoid ice—it was likely made with tap water.

Avoid Animals

Animals can look cute and cuddly, and you may want to pet them. But any animal, even if it appears to be friendly or harmless, can spread disease and may be dangerous. When traveling, don’t pet or feed animals, even pets, as they may not be vaccinated against rabies and other diseases. Animal bites can cause a bacterial infection, that may require antibiotics, so seek medical attention after any animal encounter. Also, be sure you are up-to-date on your tetanus vaccination.

Protect Against Sun and Extreme Temperatures

Apply sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher when traveling. Protecting yourself from the sun isn’t just for tropical beaches—you can get a sunburn even if it’s cloudy or cold.

If you are traveling in hot weather or in a hot climate, wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing. When traveling in cold weather or climates, wear warm clothing in several loose layers.

Emergencies and Natural Disasters

If you or a travel companion gets an injury or sickness that can’t be helped with basic first aid or an over-the-counter medicine, seek medical attention right away. Visit Getting Health Care During Travel to learn how to connect with a doctor or medical services during your trip.

If you bought evacuation insurance and think you need to use it, call the travel insurance company for assistance.

For other emergencies or natural disasters you may want to do the following: