When you travel and go on a vacation, you expect to be able to just relax, see the sights, and have some fun. However, allergies can easily ruin the mood and put a damper on your excitement. If you’re not careful, a supposedly happy occasion can become a frustrating or even lethal event.
To stay safe while you travel and have an enjoyable vacation, here are some tips to keep in mind:
Pack Your Medicines
If you have mild allergies like hay fever, also called allergic rhinitis, make sure to bring your preferred antihistamine that will last you for the duration of the trip. Make sure to keep them in their original packaging, so that you won’t have any issues if your bags get checked (important if you’re traveling by plane).
For those with allergies that cause itchy rashes or other skin irritations, bring a rash cream or medicated ointment that works for you. Meanwhile, those with asthma should always have their inhalers ready.
If you have severe allergies, always have your adrenaline injector close. Place it in your hand-carry bag or purse, where you can quickly get to it when needed, and never in a plane’s overhead compartment, your car’s trunk, or any other hard-to-access areas. It’s also recommended to carry a certificate or letter from your doctor, stating all your allergies and medications. Like your adrenaline injector, keep this document close to you at all times.
Finally, if you take prescription medication, ask your doctor for an updated prescription before you travel. Then, find out where the nearest drugstores are in your destination. This way, you can get additional medicines in case you need them.
Research Your Destination
It’s a habit of most people to research their destination before traveling, so that they can find and plan the most efficient routes and the best places to sight-see, dine, and explore. If you have allergies, the research also serves as a precaution so that you can avoid locations where you can be exposed to allergens. It can be difficult to achieve, of course, but the most important thing is to minimize the risks as much as possible.
Get the Earliest Travel Schedule
If you’re traveling via public transport, whether through land, sea, or air, it’s best to find the earliest schedule so that the vehicle is freshly cleaned and disinfected. The crew will also have had limited to no interactions with previous passengers, so your exposure risk will be quite low.
Book a Hotel That Doesn’t Allow Pets
For those who are allergic to pet dander, consider looking for a place to stay that doesn’t allow pets. Of course, pet-friendly establishments are great—just not so much to your overactive immune system. If your preferred accommodations allow pets or if you weren’t able to confirm this specific detail, ask if it’s possible to be put in a room that’s as far as possible from the guests with pets.
Bring Your Own Pillow
One of the most common triggers of allergic rhinitis include dust mites, which, unfortunately, can be found in even the cleanest hotels. To prevent allergy attacks and ensure a good night’s sleep, you can bring your own pillow and pillow covers.
For easier packing, look for pillows with a polyester filling or any material that leaves plenty of air pockets. Then, use a vacuum pack and then either lay the pillow flat inside your luggage or roll it tosave
Pack Extra Masks and Wipes
You never know when and where you’ll be exposed to allergens. Even if you’re being extra careful, there may be some details that might escape your notice. As such, it’s best to be prepared for any situation. One thing you can do is to bring extra masks and disinfectant wipes with you wherever you go.
Remember that most face masks are disposable. If there are allergens in the air and you reuse a mask, you’re risking re-exposing yourself to the particles already trapped by the mask. Thus, it’s really best to throw away a used mask and get a new one if you need protection from airborne allergens.
Meanwhile, disinfectant wipes are handy for cleaning up surfaces such as tables, armrests in public transport, and the like. Not only will you get rid of most allergens, but you’ll also kill harmful germs that can cause diseases.
Know Where the Healthcare Facilities Are
Finally, take note of the healthcare facilities nearest your vacation destination and acquire their contact details. This is particularly important if you’re traveling alone. This way, if worse comes to worst and you need urgent medical attention, you know immediately who to call.
Again, make sure to bring all necessary documents with you at all times. The most important ones are your doctor’s certificate and your latest prescription. These will help other doctors in giving you the correct treatment.
With these simple tips, you can have an enjoyable time wherever you may be having your well-deserved vacation. Bon voyage!