top of page

Top 16 Africa Travel Health Tips You Need to Know Before Your Trip

Traveling to Africa can be an incredible adventure, filled with stunning natural landscapes, diverse cultures, and unforgettable experiences. However, it's essential to prioritize your health and safety during your journey. 

By following these africa travel health tips, you can better prepare for and navigate any potential health challenges that may arise before, during, and after your trip.

Before Your Trip to Africa

  • Consult a Travel Health Specialist: Schedule an appointment with a travel health clinic, such as Away Clinic, or your healthcare provider well in advance of your departure.  They can assess your individual risks and provide guidance on necessary vaccinations, medications, and other precautions based on your African itinerary and health history.

  • Get Vaccinated: Depending on your destination(s) in Africa, you may need vaccinations for diseases such as yellow fever, hepatitis A and B, typhoid, and rabies. Some countries require proof of yellow fever vaccination for entry, so be sure to obtain the necessary documentation.

  • Pack a Travel Health Kit: Assemble a well-stocked travel health kit with essential medications, first-aid supplies, insect repellent, sunscreen, and any prescription medications you may need during your trip. Be sure to pack enough for the entire duration of your stay, plus a few extra days in case of delays.

  • Research Health Facilities: Familiarize yourself with the locations of reputable healthcare facilities near your planned destinations in case you need medical attention during your Africa travel.

  • Obtain Travel Health Insurance: Consider purchasing comprehensive travel health insurance that covers medical emergencies, evacuations, and other potential health-related expenses. This can provide peace of mind and financial protection in case of unexpected situations.

During Your Trip to Africa

  • Practice Food and Water Safety: Be cautious when consuming food and water in Africa. Stick to bottled or purified water, and avoid raw or undercooked foods, especially from street vendors. Peel fruits and vegetables yourself, and ensure that all food is thoroughly cooked and served hot.

  • Prevent Mosquito-Borne Illnesses: Africa is home to several mosquito-borne diseases, such as malaria, dengue fever, and Zika virus. Use insect repellent containing DEET or picaridin, wear long-sleeved shirts and pants (especially at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active), and consider using a permethrin-treated mosquito net while sleeping.

  • Avoid Animal Contact: While it may be tempting to interact with wildlife, refrain from touching or handling animals, as they can transmit diseases like rabies. Additionally, be cautious around stray dogs and other potentially aggressive animals.

  • Be Careful Around Fresh Water: Schistosomiasis (a parasitic infection) is present in South Africa. We recommend avoiding swimming or wading in unchlorinated water sources.

  • Practice Respiratory Hygiene: In crowded areas or during disease outbreaks, wear a well-fitted mask, practice frequent handwashing and/or use hand sanitizer, and maintain social distancing when possible to reduce the risk of respiratory infections.

  • Stay Hydrated and Protect Against the Sun: Africa's climate can be hot and dry, so drink plenty of fluids and protect yourself from the sun by wearing hats, sunglasses, and applying sunscreen regularly.

After Your Trip to Africa

  • Monitor Your Health: Pay attention to any potential symptoms of illness, such as fever, diarrhea, or unusual rashes, for up to a month after returning from your africa travel. Seek medical attention promptly if you experience any concerning symptoms.

  • Share Your Travel History: If you do become ill after your trip, inform your healthcare provider about your recent africa travel and any potential exposures or activities that may have contributed to your illness.

  • Consider Post-Travel Testing: Depending on your destinations and activities, your healthcare provider may recommend post-travel testing for certain diseases, such as malaria or other mosquito-borne illnesses.

  • Practice Good Hygiene: Continue practicing good hygiene habits, such as frequent handwashing and respiratory etiquette, to reduce the risk of transmitting any illnesses you may have contracted during your Africa travel.

  • Rest and Recover: Jet lag and the physical demands of travel can take a toll on your body. Allow yourself time to rest and recover after your trip to help your body's natural defenses recharge.

By following these africa travel health tips, you can better prepare for and mitigate potential health risks during your journey, ensuring a safer and more enjoyable experience in the diverse and captivating destinations of Africa.

Preparation is key to ensuring safety on trips to Africa. Make sure to schedule an appointment at your nearest Away clinic location for personalized travel health consultations, vaccinations, and travel medication prescriptions. With proper planning and precautions, you can embark on your African adventure with confidence and peace of mind!


bottom of page