What To Do If You Fall Ill On Holiday

While the majority of us are extremely careful not to fall ill on holiday, sometimes is just happens, whether it’s a spot of ‘deli-belly’ or something more serious, here’s some help and advice on what to do:

  • First and foremost, before travel, you must see if you are required to have jabs and vaccinations. This is usually the case for those travelling outside of Western Europe, North America, Africa and Australasia. Many of the jabs need time in your system before they provide 100% protection so you should speak to a health care professional at least six weeks before you travel
  • Never travel without suitable travel insurance that has sufficient medial expense cover. Remember, the NHS in the UK is unique and in every other country you will be required to pay for any medical treatment you have. This is extremely costly, especially in countries such as the United States, where expenses can add up to  hundreds of thousands of pounds
  • If you are taking part in sports and activities – such as skiing, water sports etc. – ensure you have mentioned this to your travel insurance provider. Failure to do so will make claims null and void
  • If you are travelling to an EU country ensure that every member of your travelling party has a current EHIC card. This does not replace the need for travel insurance but does give you access to free, instant, emergency medical treatment
  • Always travel with a basic first aid kit – items such as paracetamol, ibuprofen, plasters, tweezers, antiseptic cream, insect repellent, upset stomach tablets etc.
  • If you are taking regular medicine be sure to pack these, and extra, for your holiday. And be sure to pack these in your hand luggage so they are on your person at all times
  • Drink only bottled, not tap water. And when in bars, ask that there is no ice in your drink. If you are somewhere especially rural or third world, brush your teeth using bottled water also
  • Chemists overseas are extremely good at diagnosing ailments and in most instances have an English speaking member of staff. If in any doubt about a minor ailment or illness pop along for help and advice
  • However, if the illness is more serious, or if you have been involved in a serious accident, then you should make your way to a hospital immediately – this is where the value and importance of travel insurance sets in!