5 ways to stay healthy when travelling
As the world eases restrictions and looks forward to the ability to travel again, some people are booking trips and planning for their next adventure. Here are a few pointers to make sure you stay in good health when travelling and keep yourself in the best condition to enjoy your trip.
For most people, travel insurance is something they never use. We just love to think something will never happen to us, and that we’re smart travellers and don’t “need” travel insurance, so we think it would be nice not to pay for it. It’s very easy to think that way… 😩 I once did at some point. It might seem like you’re paying for unnecessary peace of mind, but when you’re travelling and you’re in unfamiliar surroundings, it’s better to be safe than sorry. There is no way to know how you might be treated as a foreigner if you get into an accident or need medical assistance. Having travel insurance is simply a cost that you pay now to avoid a large cost later on if something did happen – knock on wood. ✊
Pack some first aid kit or emergency supplies
For minor ailments, being able to remedy the issue yourself with some medicines you are familiar with will help you recover quickly. It’s not a bad idea to pack things like painkillers for headaches and muscle pains, sterile wipes, bandaids, tweezers, antiseptic lotion or ointment, and even over the counter diarrhea medicine and an epipen – especially for potential reactions to food. You might even be used to carrying some of these already.
If you have been travelling, chances are you’re aware of what has gotten in the way of your travels. You might take something for motion sickness, you might need earplugs for various reasons, or something else that makes travelling more comfortable for you.
I would recommend keeping a list of the things that you pack when you travel, and copy that list and check it off every time you go on a trip. Have a think about what you might need to be prepared for any issues that might come up, and include those items in your list too.
Drink enough fluids
It’s so important to remain hydrated! Especially when flying, we need to drink plenty of water. It might sometimes feel like you’re drinking so much and you’re going to the bathroom frequently, but it’s important because we get very dehydrated in an airplane.
You have to stay hydrated when you’re travelling as well. A collapsible water bottle is a very portable option and good for day trips. When you’re doing a day trip in a foreign city, you might never know when you will have access to water. When you are travelling you’re also likely to be moving around more than you would at home, so you will need to drink more water than usual.
Eat well and eat enough
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Even more so when you are travelling, fuel your body the right way ready to prepare yourself for the day ahead.
You might have to prepare yourself for what local cuisine is on offer, since you might be visiting a place where the cuisine is vastly different from at home. Depending on your plans and where you are staying, you might need to have breakfast options ready the night before, for example by purchasing cereal from a convenience or grocery store. In some countries, breakfast is something like rice or noodles and may feel more like a “meal” for some people, which is why locating breakfast food or snacks might be a necessity.
In some countries breakfast also isn’t a big thing, so you could plan your days to start a little later, or have some snacks in your accommodation to have in the morning. When you travel, it’s a good idea to adapt to what the locals eat and when they eat, but this may not be for everyone.
On top of all this, it’s still important to pay attention and make sure you’re getting the right nutrients and still eating the right foods. You might be really into the sweets and snacks of the place you’re visiting, but even though you’re holidaying and enjoying yourself, it’s not sustainable!
Allow yourself time to relax and recharge
Staying healthy definitely includes mental health. Sure, you may want to do it all and see it all. I know that feeling! Especially when you visit a new place and you just want to tick all the boxes. I’m willing to admit that I am one for more sight-seeing holidays and I don’t take a lot of holidays for just relaxing, because I like to experience new things! But with any holiday, it’s wise not to cram too much into one trip and to allow yourself a lot of time so you’re not in a rush either. When Nick and I travel and spend more than a couple of weeks away, we do this is by spending a couple extra days in some cities so that we can take our time. We might plan a more relaxing day after a big day of sight-seeing.
If you’re planning to visit a few landmarks in one day, perhaps consider an activity with less walking and travelling the next day. Also take into account how the temperature can make you feel, especially when it’s a warm climate. You don’t want to get exhausted. It’s important to have a sense of balance when you travel so that you have the energy to keep going, instead of burning out and having many days not feeling a hundred percent.
Also remember that you won’t be able to enjoy the new experiences you’re having if you’re exhausted. Travel should never be about trying to do as much as you can in one trip. You can have a great time and have wonderful memories by taking it easy and savouring every moment.