Preparing for a long adventure can be incredibly exciting. Booking tickets, buying gear, making lists of places to visit; it is a great way to channel the excitement of upcoming travel. Unfortunately, some of the preparation can sometimes be quite tedious.
Alongside visa applications, figuring out which vaccinations to get can sometimes be a real headache, especially if you don’t know which ones you might need and how long the ones you already had before last. That is why we have compiled an ultimate travel vaccine guide, so that you can have all the important information at a glance!
Where do I need it for? Tetanus exists everywhere in the world. Polio can be found in developing countries in Asia and Africa. Diptheria exists in most countries in sub-Saharan Arica as well as in parts of South America and South East Asia. It generally makes sense to get this vaccine regardless of where you’re going.
How Long Does it Last*? The DTP vaccine generally lasts for 10 years.
How Much Does it Cost**? The DTP combined booster will generally cost between $25 and $50. In most countries with free healthcare, this vaccine will be very cheap or even free (as is the case in the UK).
Where do I need it for? Hep. A can be found in all countries with poor hygiene or sanitation problems.
How Long Does it Last? There is conflicting information online about how long this shot lasts, but many reliable sources say that you are covered for life with this vaccine. In all cases, it is sure to cover you for at least 20 years.
How Much Does it Cost? This one is a bit more expensive and could cost you between $45 and $85. It is often combined with either Typhoid or Hepatitis B, so the price may vary. Once again, this vaccine is pretty cheap or even free in countries with free healthcare.
Where do I need it for? Hep. B can be found in South East Asia, the Caribbean, the Middle East and in the South and Western Pacific.
How Long Does it Last? The Hepatitis B vaccine usually lasts about 10 years though some sources claim it can last up to 15. In general it is better to ask your doctor, but you are definitely set for at least 10 years.
How Much Does it Cost? Hepatitis B is considered a private vaccine, so it will cost you a lot regardless of whether you live in a country with free healthcare. Sometimes, when it is combined with a Hepatitis A short, it can be free or cheap, but in most cases you will pay between $35 and $95.
Japanese B Encephalitis
Where do I need it for? Only needed if you spend a lot of time in rural areas such as rice paddies or when working with pigs. In those cases, this vaccine is needed in South, East and South East Asia.
How Long Does it Last? It is claimed to last between 1 and 3 years, though the most reliable sources claim that it only covers you for 1 year.
How Much Does it Cost? This is also a private vaccine and it can be pretty expensive, ranging anywhere from $45 to $150. Generally, this vaccine is not available on national healthcare.
Tick Borne Encephalitis
Where do I need it for? This one is quite rare but can be found in Western Russia, Central-Eastern Europe and Scandinavia.
How Long Does it Last? Similarly to Japanese Encaphalitis, this vaccine lasts 1 to 3 years.
How Much Does it Cost? Once again, the price is also similar to Japanese Encephalitis and can range from $45 to $150.
Where do I need it for? Rabies can occur in most parts of the world but is most common in Asia, Africa and South America.
How Long Does it Last? The vaccine can last up to 2 years, but you can only be sure to be 100% covered by it for 1 year.
How Much Does it Cost? This is also a private vaccine but it is generally quite cheap and available for $17.50 to $40.
Where do I need it for? Most common in countries that could have sewage-contaminated water such as Africa, South America and East Asia. It can also occur in Southern and South East Asia.
How Long Does it Last? The Typhoid vaccine generally lasts 3 years.
How Much Does it Cost? Typhoid will be cheap or free in countries with free healthcare. Privately, the vaccine costs between $25 and $40.
Where do I need it for? Yellow Fever mainly dwells in the tropical countries of Africa and South America. Some infected countries will require you to show evidence of having had the vaccine to enter.
How Long Does it Last? The Yellow Fever vaccine generally lasts 10 years.
How Much Does it Cost? This is another private vaccine, the priceof which ranges from $45 to $80.
Where do I need it for? Meningitis is mainly a risk in the “meningitis belt” in sub-Saharan Africa, which stretches from Ethiopia to Senegal. There have also been outbreaks in the Middle East.
How Long Does it Last? The Meningitis vaccine generally lasts 3 to 5 years.
How Much Does it Cost? Meningitis is a private vaccine that can cost between $80 and $160.
Where do I need it for? TB occurs everywhere in the world, but the most hardly hit countries include India, Indonesia, Nigeria, Pakistan, China and South Africa.
How Long Does it Last? The TB vaccine generally lasts 15 years.
How Much Does it Cost? TB is another private vaccine that can cost between $ 100 and $200.
Different diseases can have different levels of risk and gravity. Whether you decide to get vaccinated is up to you, though it is always wise to consult with a doctor. In general, whether vaccinated or not, it is wise to protect yourself from mosquitos, always use protection during sexual intercourse, avoid water that isn’t bottled and stay away from stray or wild animals.
*The duration over which vaccinations cover an individual can vary and it is always best to check with a doctor if you have any doubts.
**Costs of vaccinations vary from country to country. The price ranges displayed here are based on averages from Western Europe and North America.