6 Safety Tips for First-Time Travelers to Southeast Asia

If you are travelling to a different part of the word, you are bound to be excited, but make sure you think about your health and safety too. It may seem dull to think about when you would rather be planning where you will be sightseeing and what bars and restaurants you’d love to visit, but you should get the important stuff checked off first. Traveling anywhere can come with risks, so make sure you are well researched about the place are you are visiting, and keep in mind these tips:

Sanitization

A new country comes with excitement, but it also comes with lots of new people and new microorganisms. Keeping up your hygiene is essential, as you will not have built up immunity to these new bugs, and the last thing you need to ruin your holiday is a bad case of sickness and diarrhoea. Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly before eating and drinking, and take hand sanitizer with you wherever you go, as not everywhere provides anti-bacterial soap.

Get Vaccinated

One of your first steps before travelling is to make sure your vaccinations are all in check. For some countries, you might be fully immunized already, but different parts of the world can come with other deadly viruses and diseases. It can take around eight weeks for your vaccinations to make your body fully immunized, so get this sorted nice and early. It might cost you money, but it is much better to pay money now than pay with your life later. If you are unsure about what vaccinations you will need, always check with a medical professional and seek their advice.

Eating and Drinking

Whilst washing your hands is important, sometimes it’s the food and drinks themselves that contain nasty bugs. Tap water is often unsuitable to drink, so you will need to rely on bottled water, which should be available from most places – just make sure the bottles are sealed and not simply re-filled bottles. It is more difficult to ascertain whether food is clean and safe to eat, so use your wits to determine which places seem hygienic and tourist-friendly. Read reviews and ask locals or fellow tourists.

Safe Areas

This involves a little research, and you have to remember that nowhere is truly safe if you are unfamiliar with it. Determining how safe an area is can come from lots of things, but you should check if certain parts of the country are unstable for political or religious reasons, or if there are ongoing conflicts. Try to avoid places with higher crime rates, as tourists make easy targets for petty thieves and criminals. You also need to consider the weather, as some parts of the world can be prone to extreme weather conditions, particularly at certain times of the year. All of these things can be somewhat unpredictable, but it helps to be aware of the risk factors that come with travelling.

Rules and Regulations

You will also need to do a little research on the customs and laws of the country, to make sure that you are following their ways correctly. Every country and area have their own customs and values, and different cultures do things differently. There isn’t a wrong and right here regarding people’s beliefs, but you should be respectful no matter where you go.

Travelling Alone

You are not necessarily safe if you travel as a group, but you are definitely less safe when travelling alone. If you plan to travel alone, you need to be fully prepared and generally more cautious. Only stay in places with higher security levels, do not leave belongings unattended, and try to make friends with other solo travelers so that you can look out for each other.

Wherever your travels take you, as long as you travel with care and respect, you should have an amazing and exciting experience. Stay safe – and have lots of fun!

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