Safe and Healthy Travel Tips
Making time for a weekend getaway or an international adventure is good for the mind and spirit, and is a great way to reconnect with those close to you. Staying safe and healthy when you travel helps keep the good times rolling, so here are a few tips to keep in mind as you prepare for your next fantastic journey.
- If you plan to travel outside the country, check to see if your health insurance plan will cover a medical emergency in the places you’ll be visiting. If it doesn’t, look up “insurance providers for overseas coverage” and consider options that will pay for emergency care if it’s needed.
- The U.S. State Department advises making a copy of your passport and itinerary for a close friend or family member who won’t be traveling with you so they’ll know how to contact you in an emergency.
- Check the Travel.State.Gov website for travel alerts, such as health or safety issues, in the area where you’ll be. Also check to see if any special shots or visas are needed ahead of your visit and get them as soon as possible.
- Make sure children traveling with you are current on their vaccines and keep a copy of their shot records with you.
- Check the weather and pack for likely conditions – and don’t forget sunscreen.
- Be sure to bring medications, glasses or contact lenses, bottled water and snacks with you in case of travel delays or lost baggage.
- If traveling abroad, consider enrolling in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), a free service that allows U.S. citizens to receive security updates from the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.
- If you’re visiting an area during hurricane season, pay attention to news and weather forecasts, talk to the hotel management and have a plan of action in case you need to take shelter or evacuate quickly.
- If traveling with a group, make a list of everyone’s “must see” item(s) and be willing to split into smaller groups so each person gets to enjoy theirs.
- Know that things don’t always go according to plan, so be flexible and open to spontaneous opportunities that sometimes work out even better.
To get you and your family travel-ready, schedule any doctor appointments, get vaccines and make sure prescriptions are filled ahead of time. To find a doctor or specialist, call the number or complete the form on this page.