Whether you fly, drive, or cruise the seas, vacations are expensive, and your time away is precious. Don’t let infections ruin your vacation!

  • Talk to your doctor about any vaccinations you will need before traveling out of the country.
  • Be sure to bring a First Aid kit—and lots of hand sanitizer.
  • If traveling abroad, carefully select food by avoiding uncooked shellfish, undercooked seafood or meat, as well as raw vegetables that might have been washed in local water.
  • Check ahead with embassy websites if traveling out of the country. For U.S. domestic travel, check with the National Park Service and State Departments of Health for extra health and safety tips.
  • Carry your doctor’s phone number and your health insurance information for easy reference. Don’t forget your vaccination records as well as a list of all medications that you currently take, including herbal remedies or vitamins.

Vomit on planes
You can get sick from being around someone else’s vomit—from contagious diseases like norovirus, which causes vomiting, diarrhea, and can cause severe dehydration. If there is blood in the vomit, it’s possible that hepatitis or HIV could be transmitted. Other illnesses such as the flu, and viruses like Ebola are also transmitted through bodily fluids such as vomit. So what do you do when someone vomits on a flight?

Here are some tips to help you avoid getting sick:

  • If at all possible, avoid sitting in or next to a seat that has been vomited on—the airline should re-seat you and clean the seat.
  • If the unfortunate happens, and you can’t avoid it, make sure to cover the seat with a layer of plastic and then a thick, protective blanket, to avoid any contagious material from touching your clothing and your skin.
  • Wear a face mask (if available) or cover your mouth and nose with a handkerchief or a clean t-shirt to avoid breathing in the fumes.
  • Avoid eating or touching mucous membranes (your eyes, mouth, and nose) during the flight.
  • Wash laundry thoroughly when you arrive at your destination. Immediately remove and wash clothing or items that may be contaminated with vomit or fecal matter. Handle soiled items carefully. Wash laundry with detergent for the longest cycle time available and then machine dry.

 

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