Do I Need Vaccines to Travel?

One of the fears of traveling across many countries is the possibility of contracting diseases. But, that should not stop you from traveling because they are ways to avoid such risks. Vaccines are recommended to protect travelers from serious health conditions when on the road. Depending on your travel destination, there are some diseases like yellow fever and measles that are very common in most parts of the world but, hardly found in the US. As such, getting vaccinated before your trip can provide better protection against these diseases.

Types of Vaccines for Travelers

According to the CDC, there are three categories of vaccines that every traveler should keep in mind when planning a trip. These include;

Routine vaccines: These vaccines are recommended for all US citizens and administered based on age, health conditions and other factors. They are the common ones administered to children but, also recommended for adults. Some routine vaccines like flu and tetanus are offered yearly or every ten years respectively.

Required vaccines: These vaccines are mandatory for travelers to enter into foreign countries but, the regulations may vary. Yellow fever vaccine is often the only mandatory requirement.

Recommended vaccines: These are vaccines that although not required for entry into foreign countries, are encouraged by the CDC to protect the health of travelers.

How to Determine the Vaccines to Acquire Before Traveling

Generally, all the above types of vaccines are important to ensure the health of travelers as well as the people that they will come into contact with along the road. However, there are a few things that you should consider to determine the necessary vaccines to always get before making a trip. The vaccines that you need for a trip will mainly depend on the travel destination, your state of health and the vaccinations that you have had previously.

Overall, vaccines are undoubtedly integral to the health of travelers and, should never be ignored in every trip. Travelers should get vaccinated at least 4 to 6 weeks before traveling.


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