NY Travel Clinic

How to Stay Healthy While Traveling This Summer

Despite — or maybe because of — the convenience of being sealed in an airtight tube and hurtled through the atmosphere at hundreds of miles an hour, travelers will come down sick. Not everyone will, but if you’re the one in a thousand that do, you don’t care that the odds were in your favor.

Be that as it may, colds and flu manage to jet all over the world. Here’s what you want to know to keep healthy on your next trip.

Before the Trip

-Boost the Immune System

The powers of supplements to prevent colds hasn’t been proven — conclusively. But it won’t hurt to take them. Probiotics can support gut health — a central spot in which to boost the immune system.

-Pack These in the Carry-On

Hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes and a coat that can be used as a blanket and don’t forget the nasal spray. Airplane air is famously dry.

-Get the Glasses

Contact lens will dry the eyes and open the door to microbial invaders.

-In Public Spaces

When you are at the airport or a train station, be careful. So many people packed into a small area – as many as 250 in one car –  can get you sick — even before you travel.

-Six-feet Rule

Be sure to keep six feet from individuals who are sniffling or hacking. Closer than six feet and those tiny droplets can be inhaled or land in your eyes and nose.


Be certain to sanitize your hands after rubbing “germy” places. The ticket counter, ATM, security containers and dining trays all have been handled by people are potential hotspots for contagion. Using hand sanitizer is a good preventative.

-Wear Socks

Be sure to wear socks in the security line. A fungal infection may not be caught, but you can accumulate anything on your feet which then gets transferred to your hands as you put your footwear back on.

-On the Plane (or Train)

Flight crews don’t have the chance to sanitize between hops, so get the wet wipes and wipe down the tray table, armrests, and digital screens. Flu germs can survive several days on the surfaces. Be sure to utilize your carry-on for storage rather than the backseat pocket. How do you know the tourist before you didn’t put a soiled diaper in there?

Aim the Airflow

Direct the air ventilator so the air doesn’t flow in front of your face. The air current will help deflect possibly contagious droplets from your nose and mouth. If your nostrils start to feel dry, break out the nasal spray.

-See Something — Say Something

If you see someone visibly sick, be sure to tell the airline personnel — immediately. The cabin crew may be able to move the ill person — or hand you a face mask. The common understanding is that the two rows in front of — and behind — the ill individual are most exposed.

-On the Ground

Find the least congested spot on trains. The journey is normally quick, so the perils are less than on a jet. Close contact though makes a person vulnerable. You aren’t in the clear either if you take a taxi, and the driver is coughing.


Sitting is better than standing as seats are less tainted than the poles or straps. If you have to hang on one, be sure not to rub your face until you sanitize your hands.