Travel Safety Tips

Top 10 Travel Tips

  • When you arrive, spend time in the sunlight to help your body reset its natural time clock. Eat meals at the local time.
  • Use mosquito repellent for skin and clothing to protect from disease-bearing insects.
  • Never go barefoot, even on the beach. Don’t swim in rivers, lakes, or streams. Don’t forget sunscreen.
  • Drink only boiled/bottled water and beverages and avoid ice. Use boiled/bottled water to brush your teeth.
  • Fruit and veggies? You wash and peel it or forget it.
  • Refill prescriptions before leaving. Keep meds in their original containers.
  • Bring a roll of toilet paper and hand disinfectant. Band-aids and first aid cream.
  • Consider cost, time, convenience and safety of each transportation option before choosing.
  • Do isometric exercises (when muscles are contracted & held, but not lengthened) while on your flight. Walk, stretch and toe tap.
  • Purchase travel insurance to recover costs if a delay, cancellation or disaster occurs.

Treating Water

If it is not possible to boil water, chemical disinfection is an alternative. Most (but not all) diarrhea pathogens are susceptible to being killed by iodine, which can be used to disinfect water, leafy vegetables and fruits.

Add five drops of two percent iodine to 1 liter of water and let stand for 30 minutes.

  • Travelers who have thyroid problems or iodine allergies, or who are pregnant, should NOT use iodine for water purification.
  • To avoid the taste and smell of iodine in disinfected water, vitamin C (ascorbic acid) can be added to the water after the iodine has been in contact with the water for 30 minutes or more. Add about 50 mg of vitamin C to a liter of water and shake briefly to eliminate the iodine taste and odor.
  • Tetraglycine hydroperiodide tablets (e.g., Globaline, Potable-Aqua, Coghlan’s) are available from pharmacies and sporting goods stores. The manufacturer’s instructions should be followed. Chlorine also can be used, but its germicidal activity varies greatly with temperature and other factors; thus it is less reliable than iodine.

About portable filters: It cannot be assumed that portable filters will make drinking water safe. Most authorities make no recommendation regarding the use of portable filters because of insufficient independent verification of efficacy. However, in areas where it is not practical to boil all drinking water, a good quality filter with a pore size of 0.1 - 0.4 microns will effectively remove cysts and bacteria, but not viruses. The filtered water should then be treated chemically as well.

Reference: Shoreland, Inc. 7/8/14 Page 2 of 2 R/Top Ten Travel Tips.doc