April 29, 2021

Tips for Traveling Safely and Hygienically

If the Coronavirus pandemic has taught us one thing, it’s that germs and harmful bacteria are everywhere and carry a very real threat to our health. The good news is, most countries have rolled out an effective vaccine program which means the most vulnerable members of society are protected from serious health complications as a result of contracting Covid-19. 

Whilst the threat of Covid is reduced, though, it doesn’t mean you can pack away your hand sanitizer and stop washing your hands whilst traveling just yet. There are lots of other illnesses you can pick up whilst traveling that can leave you feeling really under the weather and potentially ruin your trip. 


Some of these infectious diseases include: 

Influenza
Norovirus
Common cold 

All of these are extremely unpleasant but can be prevented through good hygiene whilst traveling. Here are just some of the ways you can travel safely and hygienically. 

Hand Sanitizer

The most obvious way to practice good hygiene when traveling is to keep a hand sanitizer within easy reach. Whether you’re traveling on an airplane from LAX to Sydney, or if you’re getting in a taxi from Maidstone in Kent to central London, it’s always good to have hand sanitizer on you. Bottles are typically small and can last a good while. You can even buy bottles that clip to the strap on your bag so you don’t need to contaminate every other item in your bag with your unclean hands.

Antibacterial Wipes

This is more of a tip for those who are traveling whilst already infected with a disease (like a common cold). Airports and train stations are full of high bacteria points, such as handrails, ATMs, electronic booking screens, and doors. If you have cold or other infectious diseases, consider getting an antibacterial wipe and placing it between your hand and the item you’re going to touch. This will stop you from spreading your germs to other people. In the case of screens, think about wiping them down after you’ve used them. 

Self-Awareness 

In a similar notion to using antibacterial wipes, you should always exhibit self-awareness when traveling. This means avoiding touching your face and mouth without first washing your hands, not eating before washing your hands, not coughing/sneezing into your hands, and effectively disposing of tissues, etc. Also, consider personal space. 

Practice Personal Hygiene 

This point goes without saying, but when you’re traveling it’s important to practice good personal hygiene. This means keeping your nails trimmed, cleaning them regularly, washing your hair at least once a week, and showering every day. Your hair in particular can harbor colonies of bacteria, especially when wet with water or sweat. A good rule of thumb is to always wash your hair after traveling or being in the sea/a swimming pool. You should also try and dry your hair immediately so that moist, warm conditions (which bacteria thrive on) are kept to a minimum. 

Oral Hygiene

Aside from your fingertips, your mouth is the next biggest hub of bacteria. Millions of bacteria live in your mouth and are spread through saliva. Whilst you might not directly spit on something, you might bite your nails or put food in your mouth, inadvertently touching the inside of your mouth and saliva. You might then touch a high bacteria item like a door handle or a handrail, spreading mouth bacteria in the process. You can minimize the effects of this by regularly brushing your teeth and using an antibacterial mouthwash. 

Summary 

These are just a few of the ways you can travel safely and hygienically, reducing your risk of contracting and passing on illness as you do.

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