Booked your tickets for a trip overseas? Before you start planning your itinerary, don’t forget to check if your vaccinations are up-to-date!
Travel vaccinations sound dull in comparison to the rest of your pre-trip preparations. However, making sure you’re properly vaccinated can make a difference between enjoying your holiday or spending it sick in bed.
Here’s what you need to know about getting vaccinated before you head on your adventure.
Why do I need to get travel vaccinations?
Travel vaccinations are recommended shots you should get before going abroad, based on your travel plans. This is because the risk of contracting certain (preventable) diseases is much higher than in Singapore.
Getting these specific vaccinations would protect you from falling ill while you’re away. More than just ruining your holiday plans, some of these diseases have serious health repercussions as well.
What type of vaccinations do I need for travel?
Depending on your destination, recommended travel vaccinations include:
- Influenza / Flu: For general travel
- Hepatitis A and B: For travel to developing countries; additionally, vaccinations provide long-term protection
- Tetanus: For general travel; and for individuals who will or have been in physical contact with soil or manure
- Meningococcal: For travel to parts of Africa and Saudi Arabia, particularly for the Hajj or Umrah pilgrimages
- Typhoid Fever & Salmonella: For travel to places where typhoid fever and salmonella is common, such as South Asia, especially India, Pakistan, or Bangladesh
- Polio: For travel to polio-endemic areas; and recommended for lab workers who might handle poliovirus and healthcare workers who treat patients who could have polio
- Japanese Encephalitis: For travel to rural or agricultural areas or to JEV-endemic areas such as Japan, India, Pakistan and Australia
In addition to what’s listed above, you should also ensure you’re up-to-date with the schedule of routine vaccinations that MOH recommends. Your recommended vaccinations may also depend on whether you have any existing health conditions.
It’s best to speak to a doctor for medical advice if you are unsure of what vaccinations you require.
When should I complete my travel vaccinations?
Generally, you should get vaccinated 4 to 6 weeks before you travel overseas. Immunity takes about 2 weeks to develop after you have been vaccinated. You may also experience some mild side effects from your vaccination.
Where can I get travel vaccinations in Singapore?
You can book a vaccination appointment at any of our 9 islandwide DA clinics. After completing your purchase on our online Marketplace, you will receive a booking link to schedule the vaccination appointment at your preferred date, time and clinic location.
How else can I protect myself when I’m travelling?
Vaccinations are just one part of staying well. Protect yourself with these simple travel tips:
- Practise good hand hygiene and minimise touching your face unnecessarily if you haven’t washed your hands
- Only drink bottled, filtered or boiled water if you are unsure whether local tap water is potable
- Minimise eating raw or uncooked food (such as meats, seafood or salads), especially if you are purchasing food from a street vendor
- Apply insect repellent when you are going outdoors, particularly if you are visiting a country where dengue and other mosquito-borne diseases are more common
Holidays should be fun affairs and you should be enjoying yourself, without worrying about falling ill. Being vaccinated helps you to travel in peace and make the most out of your trip. Get ready for your next holiday with us. Book an appointment for your travel vaccination at our DA clinics today.