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Flu-Free, Healthy Travel this Winter

Wherever you may be going this winter, protecting yourself and others from the flu is important. Here are some useful tips for staying healthy during the winter months.

Before Your Trip

Get vaccinated.

Vaccines are the most important tool we have for preventing the flu. If you have not gotten your vaccine already, it's important to get it before you travel. Flu vaccine is available in many places, including doctors' offices, health departments, and pharmacies. Getting vaccinated now is a great way to protect yourself against the flu.

Prepare a travel health kit.

Remember that prevention can be travel-sized! Include items in your kit that might be helpful if you get sick, such as tissues, pain or fever medicine, soap, and an alcohol-based hand rub to use in case soap and water are not available. For other health items to consider, see Pack Smart.

Travel only when you feel well.

Watch out for symptoms of the flu before your trip (see How do I know if I have the flu?).

If you think you have the flu or otherwise feel ill, delay your travel plans until your fever has been gone for at least 24 hours. Your fever should be gone without the use of fever-reducing medicine. Even if it means missing out on your plans, staying away from others when you're sick can help protect everyone's health.

If you have worrisome signs or symptoms, seek medical care.

During Your Trip

Take these steps to protect your health and the health of others:

Here are some simple things you can do to take care of yourself and keep others well:

  • Remember to travel only when you feel well. (See above.)
  • Cover your coughs or sneezes with a tissue. No tissue? Then cough or sneeze into your sleeve, not your hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with sick people.

More Information

CDC Features

CDC works 24/7 saving lives and protecting people from health threats to have a more secure nation. A US federal agency, CDC helps make the healthy choice the easy choice by putting science and prevention into action. CDC works to help people live longer, healthier and more productive lives.


Last syndicated: November 13, 2012
This content is brought to you by: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)