- Visit a travel health specialist before you go.
- Get vaccinated.
- Practice safe food and water precautions while overseas.
- Practice Good Handwashing Techniques
- Know what to do to in the event of illness overseas.
Chinese New Year – a Time of Happiness and Good Luck
Chinese New Year is fast approaching, and millions of people from around the world will be making the journey to the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong and Macau in order to join in on the celebrations. If you are thinking of visiting the region to celebrate the Year of the Horse, then you should take the following advice into consideration so that you stay healthy throughout your travels.
1Schedule a Visit with a Travel Health Specialist
You should take the time to schedule an appointment with a travel health specialist at least one month before you embark on your trip to China. The specialist can provide you with a comprehensive travel consultation and a discussion about your medical history to make sure that you are fit to travel. This meeting should be scheduled well in advance just in case you need to make follow-up visits for vaccinations prior to your departure.
2Make Sure Your Vaccinations are Up to Date
Your travel health specialist can provide you with vaccinations that are recommended for traveling to China. You may also be given anti-malarial medication to take with you as well as prophylactic antibiotics for unexpected illness. Your travel health specialist will give you exact instructions that are tailored for your health and travel situation.
3Exercise Caution When Eating and Drinking
Family meals and street food stall delicacies are a major draw to Chinese New Year, but travelers should be very careful about what they choose to eat and drink. Avoid eating any raw or under-cooked eggs and poultry. Do not eat fruits or vegetables that you cannot peel or sterilize. Drink sealed and bottled water from reputable companies if you are concerned about tap water. In addition, you may want to bring along a water purification kit if you are going to be visiting regions with questionable water sanitation facilities. You should also bring along over-the-counter anti-diarrhea medicines in case you become unwell from anything you eat.
4Practice Good Handwashing Techniques
One of the best ways to stay healthy is to make sure that you wash your hands thoroughly as often as possible. Be sure to use clean running water and lots of soap. Lather your hands, fingers and wrists for as long as it takes for you to sing “Happy Birthday” twice. Rinse your hands well and use a clean paper towel to dry them. If you find yourself without soap and water, you can use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that is at least 60 percent alcohol.
5Stay Safe, Even if You Become Ill
If you do become sick while visiting China for the New Year, then you should try to get in touch with a doctor as soon as possible. In the meantime, cover your nose and mouth in order to avoid spreading illness to others. If you have a fever, difficulty breathing, or you cannot keep down water, then you should contact a doctor immediately. Some major cities may have Western medical facilities, but if you are in a rural area, then you may have to travel a long distance in order to get adequate help.
Happy New Year!
By taking the appropriate steps to safeguard your health during your travels, you can ensure the best possible chance to enjoy each of the 15 days of the Lunar New Year celebrations in China. Gong Xi Fa Cai! Happy New Year!