One thing that you need to keep in mind fairly early on in planning your trip is that you will most likely need some vaccinations.
Don’t leave these to the last minute, as some courses require 2 or 3 injections over a 1 month period and you’ll probably need to take advice on exactly what you need and when you should arrange to have your injections.
Research and get advice early
Getting advice early will help with financial planning. In the UK at least, some vaccinations are pretty expensive. Depending on what you need, and assuming this is your first trip to countries that require vaccinations, you could easily be looking at upwards of £500 per person. Clearly these costs have the potential to impact your travel plans…
Some vaccinations are free on the NHS, so if you have access to the NHS, talk to your doctor and take advantage of these. Others, such as Rabies and Japanese encephalitis are expensive, as are anti-malarials (depending on how long you’ll need to take them). We have chosen to plan our travels avoiding regions where Malaria is a risk. This doesn’t involve avoiding whole countries, just particular regions.
The NHS fit-for-travel website is an excellent resource for getting a feel for what you’ll need depending on your itinerary.
We have just been through this process with our kids and will be starting our vaccinations about 6 weeks before we leave the UK.
Yellow fever: It turns out that if you have ever had this, and have retained the certificate for it, it will be accepted by any countries that require to see a certificate on arrival. If you’re itinerary keeps you away from at-risk areas, then a travel-clinic may consider issuing you with an exemption certificate, which isn’t free, but is cheaper than having the vaccination.