Have a Healthy Honeymoon

Who wants to call in sick on their trip of a lifetime? Here, tips for staying on top of your game.

The last thing anyone wants is to feel under the weather on their honeymoon—but it does happen. A few precautions should keep you both in great shape.

The Prep Step

For a honeymoon in South Africa or Thailand, or even in Tahiti and Fiji, get ready to roll up your sleeves. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a visit to these and other popular spots require certain vaccinations. Visit your primary care physician four to six weeks before your departure to get the necessary boosters, as well as prescriptions for Cipro, a powerful antibiotic, and any antimalarials that you may need. Ask the doctor to recommend an over-the-counter antidiarrheal medication, like Imodium A-D and Pepto Bismol, to bring with you. Also, get her suggestions for the most effective insect repellents, sunscreens and antibacterial wipes. For more information, go to the Travelers’ Health section at the CDC’s website, cdc.gov.

In-Flight Precautions

You want to arrive at your destination feeling fresh and energetic. “To ensure that you get off the plane ready to have fun, avoid drinking alcohol while you’re in flight,” suggests John E. DiScala, founder of johnnyjet.com, an online travel source. Even one glass of wine with dinner can leave you feeling dehydrated and uncomfortable, he says. Instead, prepare yourself to be on local time by sleeping on a flight that will land in the morning; stay awake on one that will arrive at night. After check-in, take a short nap only if absolutely necessary, DiScala says. Fighting jet lag can be tough, but the best thing to do is to spend some time outdoors.

How many times have you been on a flight and found yourself sitting behind a passenger who sounds like he’s coughing up a lung? According to research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, one in five airline passengers reports contracting a cold within one week of flying. And this was true not only for passengers on long hauls, but also for those on shorter flights. If you don’t relish becoming part of that statistic, try Nozin Nasal Sanitizer or Airborne.

Destination Dining 101

Like most travelers, you’ll probably want to throw caution to the winds and feast on the local delicacies. But do follow this basic rule: Drink only purified bottled water, and brush your teeth with it too. If a beverage comes with ice cubes, don’t drink it; the ice will be made from tap water, which may contain bacteria. You should also avoid salad (it’s been rinsed in tap water) and any fruit that can’t be peeled. It also makes sense to stay away from unpasteurized cheeses, which may contain bacteria that your body isn’t used to, as well as cream-based sauces, which may have been left unrefrigerated for too long. And only order meats cooked well-done.

Air Ambulance

Better to be safe than sorry. When you book your trip, look into Medjet Assist and AirMed International, medical transportation companies. If you become ill enough to need a medical evacuation, AirMed will transfer you to the hospital of your choice, as long as you’re at least 150 miles from home or on a cruise ship. On call round the clock, the fleet of aircraft provides a state-of-the-art intensive-care unit. A membership starts at $95 per person for a trip of up to 14 days, and coverage begins at the receiving hospital and doesn’t end until you are admitted to the hospital of your choice. Don’t worry about having to separate from your spouse, either. Anyone traveling with you can accompany you on the plane home—now that’s a relief!