Getting Started: Vaccines

(For informative purposes, not intended to start a debate.)

Although it comes up as a topic of debate in the States and parts of Europe, vaccines are crucial to traveling. From staying healthy, to actually being legally allowed to enter a country, it’s important to keep up to date with your vaccines. 

(Again, since this book is European centric, I will talk mostly about what Europe requires. This is just a general overview. If you’re going to Africa, the Middle East, Asia, South America, or Australia, please check to see what you need. Some countries tend to be very particular on the state of your physical health, and rightfully so, because they are letting you enter their country.

For Europe, there are only a few vaccines you’ll need.

• MMR (Measles, Mumps, and Rubella)

• TDaP (Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis)

• Flu

You won’t need to show proof that you are up to date on your vaccines just to enter Europe (unless coming from somewhere with an outbreak, or recent outbreak, like Yellow Fever. In those cases they will require you to show proof of vaccination.), but if you are sick, or for some reason end up in a doctor’s office or hospital, you will probably be asked, and if you don’t have proof, you might be deported from the country.

If you’ve been following the international news, then you might have seen other countries pushing the same anti-vaccine viewpoint. Keep this in mind before visiting. Even countries with well-establish healthcare and a health-conscious mindsets are pushing this stance, and it can turn a fun vacation into a near-death experience if you happen to contract measles (and you aren’t eight years old).

Stay healthy, and help keep everyone else happy. And above all, stay safe.

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