Summer is here and this is generally the time when those living in the UAE indulge in maximum travel as they seek cooler climates and enjoy the school holidays. Traveling can take a heavy toll on our health, especially when we travel with children. Here are a few general guidelines that can go a long way towards reducing the fatigue and stress associated with traveling.
1. Be up to date with vaccinations: Your body is used to the diseases that you might encounter in your native country and in the UAE. But if you are traveling to an unfamiliar destination, especially in the case of children, it would be a wise step to ensure that you are up to date with all your immunizations and take any extra immunizations that might be needed to fend off foreign diseases. In the case of some foreign destinations, it is mandatory to take flu shots or vaccinations for diseases like yellow fever.
2. Stay Away from Sick Passengers: In view of the fact that planes, trains and buses are all places where a large number of people are confined together in close quarters for hours at a time, the chances of catching an infection are significantly high. If you feel that a fellow passenger is visibly sick, do your best to stay away. If they fail to cover their mouth or nose while coughing or sneezing, they would mostly likely be amenable to a polite request to do so. Make sure that you also practice the same etiquette while coughing or sneezing.
3. Sanitize, sanitize, sanitize: Take along plenty of travel wipes and hand sanitizers when you pack your bags. Practice good hand hygiene. Wash your hands before and after meals and trips to the bathroom. Ensure that you sanitize the hotel rooms you use as well though these are generally clean as the people who might have been staying before you occupy them could have had a cold or cough or fever. Thus, it would be a good idea to wipe down light switches, telephones, doorknobs, toilet seats, faucet handles, remote controls and any other high-touch areas.
4. Sleep: Grab plenty of sleep when you travel so that jet lag has minimal effect. Use travel pillows for maximum comfort. It is important to pace yourself when visiting tourist attractions and don’t try cramming too much into a day to cut costs as this could mean higher medical bills. Greater stress and fatigue and bad quality of sleep could lower your resistance to disease. To avoid exhaustion, it is better to stick to your normal bedtimes.
5. Stay Hydrated: When you are traveling, it is easy to lose track of your water intake. It is important to stay hydrated while flying as the dry air in the cabin can lead to dehydration. Drink plenty of water before, during and after a flight. Avoid drinks like tea and coffee as they can also lead to dehydration and affect the quality of your sleep.
6. Pay attention to Diet: It is tempting to try all the local foods that you might see when you travel to foreign countries. But your stomach might not agree. Make sure you stick to a relatively healthy diet as it might not be an easy task to shed the pounds you gain while on holiday. Be cautious while trying street food as not all vendors might not be using hygienic methods of cooking food. A tummy upset can have a significant impact on the little time you have to enjoy a destination while on holiday. So, it is better to err on the side of caution.
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