Things You Didn’t Know About Travel Vaccinations

When you travel abroad, planning for your trip needs to include vaccination against dangerous diseases that exist in other parts of the world. There are many countries that will not allow you entry unless you are vaccinated against certain diseases. If you are not vaccinated against these diseases, then your dream holiday could be over before it even begins.

Examples of Destinations Requiring Inoculation

Some of the most popular holiday destinations for Europeans have strict travel vaccination policies. Here are a few examples:

  • If you wish to travel to Turkey, then you need to have an up-to-date vaccination for Tetanus and Hepatitis A. And while it is not required, it would also be a good idea to get inoculated against Hepatitis B as well as rabies.
  • If you are planning to holiday in India or Egypt, or even countries in Africa, then you also need to be vaccinated against Yellow Fever.

The point is, you will need to get vaccinated if you plan a trip to other parts of the world. If you wish to know which vaccines you need for your trip, you can check on websites such as FitForTravel and AdultVaccination.org.

If you are still not sure about which vaccinations you may need, it is best to speak with your local clinic or your GP, who can advise you on this matter and even administer the vaccination for you.

Important Reasons Why You Should Get Vaccinated

Besides the fact that the country you are planning to visit requires you to be immunised against certain diseases, getting vaccinated could also save your life. It is also the responsible thing to do since not being vaccinated could make you a carrier of a dangerous disease that could put other at risk.

Here are some important facts that you need to know about why you should get travel vaccination:

  1. If you do not get vaccinated and are unfortunate enough to contract a disease, you could end up not being covered by your travel insurance.
  2. A lot of insurance companies include conditions in their policies that state that if you do not get the required or recommended inoculations and medicines for your chosen destination, then you would be in violation of the policy. This would mean that your insurance claim would be denied.
  3. The average cost of Medical Claims is more than £1000. Added to that, treatment costs of tropical and other dangerous diseases can go into the thousands. Furthermore, if you need to be repatriated, then so costs go up exponentially.

When Should You Vaccinate Yourself?

You should get vaccinated several weeks before you are scheduled to travel. This is because there are some vaccinations that need to be administered well in advance of your trip for them to be effective by the time you depart.

At the end of the day, you need to ask yourself whether not getting vaccinated is a risk you are willing to take. It is not only dangerous to your health but could also leave you broke.

Don’t Get Taken Advantage Of While Traveling

Your bags are packed and you’re ready to go? Trips can be a lot of fun but you can also start off on the wrong foot by falling prey to these travel scams. Hopefully, this will never happen to you. But it’s better to be prepared so you’re not caught off guard.

Top 10 Travel Scams

1. Finding a hotel. You exit the airport just to be greeted by several people all promising great deals if you stay at their hotel. You pick one of them and find when you arrive the promised rate is no longer available. Now you’ll have to pay a lot more to stay. When trying to find a hotel room, talk with tourist information or book the hotel yourself.

2. Getting to your hotel. You just arrived and are exiting the airport. Look at the taxi lineup. This could take thirty minutes or more. A driver approaches you and tells you he can get you to your hotel without the wait. You decide to take the driver up on the offer. The driver puts your luggage in the vehicle and leaves you standing on the curb. Make sure you’re riding in an official cab. Also, negotiate with the driver the cost of the trip before heading to your hotel. You want to make sure they take you on a direct route and don’t overcharge you for the taxi fare.

3. Hungry for dinner? You’re in luck, someone has slid takeout menus under your door! You call the phone number and place an order. The food never arrives and they have your credit card information. If you want to order in, check with the hotel for recommendations before calling a number from a flyer that was slid under your door.

4. The wake-up call. You’ve been traveling all day and you just want to get some rest before you start sightseeing in the morning. The phone rings. You answer it to find the desk clerk on the other end asking to verify your credit card information. You tell the desk clerk they have the wrong number and you give them the right information. Problem? You just gave someone posing as the desk clerk your credit card info. You go back to sleep just to find out in the morning that you’re credit card has been used by someone else. If this happens to you, either call the front desk back or better yet, go down in person. To avoid these types of travel scams, never give out your credit card information on a call that wasn’t initiated by you.

5. Don’t let them get the drop on you. You grab something for lunch from a vendor. Someone standing nearby gets their food or drink spilled on you. They offer to help just to find they’ve helped you out of your wallet. Be careful of someone trying to brush food off of your clothes.

6. Take my picture! How many time have you asked someone to take your picture? Keep an eye on your camera. They could easily disappear once they have your camera in hand. Also, you could have a problem if they ask you to take their picture. They give you their camera, you tell them it’s not working, and they end up making a scene yelling that “you broke their camera”. They will keep trying to get everyone’s attention in the hopes that you will give them some money to fix their camera. These travel scams work because most people will pay to stop them from drawing attention to you.

7. Watch your luggage. Do you ever toss your luggage in the overhead on trains? Be careful when going through dark tunnels. Thieves will wait for these areas and simply grab your bag and keep on walking to the next car while the car your riding on is dark. You’ll be none the wiser and not realize your bag has been stolen until you’re ready to grab your bag. Try to attach the bag to the luggage rack when riding on a train so it’s not easily taken.

8. Stop for a minute and watch the street performers. It’s a lot of fun. There’s a large crowd. Sometimes these performances ask the audience to move out and form a bigger circle. Then they’ll ask everyone to move in. At that point, people are bumping into each other. This is a great time for the pickpockets to grab your wallet. Be careful where large groups form to watch a performance.

9. Attraction is closed for the morning. I actually had this happen to me in Bangkok. We were on our way to the Palace and a guide approached me telling me the Palace was closed for the morning for a private party. They would take me on a private tour and bring me back later when it was open again. As I looked over, there was so many people in there, kids, adults, I didn’t believe him. We walked over to find it was open. Check for yourself if an attraction is actually closed. It’s probably open.

10. Counting your change. When you pay for something, make sure you know how much you should be getting back. If you appear to be in a hurry, vendors may count your change very slowly and take a long pause part way through the counting. Their hope is that you think the transaction is complete, take your money and go, not realizing they’ve only counted out part of your change.

Travel is a lot of fun, but you need to be aware. Watch out for people trying to run travel scams. Always be aware and have a safe and happy trip!

Frugal Travel Tips For Rome, Italy

The entire city of Rome is like a free open air museum with historic buildings, sites, piazzas, every where the frugal traveler looks. There are some sights well worth the entrance fee such as the Sistine Chapel (in the Vatican City, a walled enclave within the city of Rome) but many of the not-to-be-missed sights are absolutely free.

Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain is a Baroque masterpiece carved out of marble. Available to all, legend says that if visitors throw a coin over their shoulders, they will be sure to return to Rome.

St. Peter’s Basilica

Touted as perhaps the largest church in Christianity, travelers can’t say they’ve seen the religious sites of the world without paying St. Peter’s Basilica a visit. Most Papal ceremonies occur at St. Peter’s. And the frugal traveler will be pleased to note that there is no entrance fee. Highlights are the awe inspiring dome and Michelangelo’s Pietà.

Note: St. Peter’s has a strict dress code (when we attended, not even shorts were allowed) so dress modestly.

Pantheon

The Pantheon is a magnificent building complete with giant bronzed doors, a columned entrance, and a huge dome. It contains the tombs of Raphael and of a few Italian Kings. The Pantheon was built as a Roman Temple and later consecrated as a Catholic Church.

Admission is free.

Spanish Steps

I think there is nothing more pleasing than sitting on the stairs of the Spanish steps, and people watching. Years ago, I would have said eating gelato also but authorities have banned that much loved practice.

Linking two piazzas, the Piazza di Spagna at the base, and the Piazza Trinità dei Monti at the top, the 138 steps are known as one of the longest and widest staircases in all of Europe.

Colosseum

There is an entrance fee for the Colosseum but a tour around the outside of the ancient Roman amphitheatre is free (plus keen eyed frugal travelers can peak inside). It is truly like a scene out of the gladiator movies. I could almost hear the crowds roar.

Rome is a city so full of history that the free sights alone will take days to see (don’t do as I did the first trip and try to see Rome in a day). The historic buildings are so close together that the best way to see the city is on foot.