Originally published in 2012 / Updated in 2017
Wisdom on vaccinations and taking malaria prophylaxis differs per country and may change through the years, so it’s best to check up on the latest info not too long before you leave on your journey.
For us it was important to find a balance between minimizing risks to get some serious/deadly infection vs. injecting our bodies with stuff that doesn’t belong there. In the Netherlands the experts are quick of the opinion to get vaccinated and take those malaria pills, and I suspect that’s because they can’t risk giving you a ‘no’.
If we had listened to those experts, and we checked out various specialists on the subjects, we would have had at least 10 injections and have been taken prophylaxis pills for years on end. That, to us, sounds like a terribly unhealthy act for our bodies.
Having said that, which vaccinations are relevant to you totally depends on your personal situation: where do you travel, when do you travel, with whom you travel, etc. So please, see the info below just as our personal decisions but, more importantly, think thoroughly about what is important for you.
I did more research and we settled on these vaccinations when leaving for our Southeast Asia Adventure:
- Hepatitis A
When we shipped to South America we extended the list with, for some South American countries, mandatory vaccination of Yellow Fever. In South America we stopped taking new typhoid vaccinations (validity of 3 years). We will reevaluate our decision when reaching regions again where typhoid is common.
What we do carry is a minimal first-aid kit and two books on staying healthy when traveling:
- Hoe blijf ik gezond in de tropen? by KIT (Koninklijk Instituut voor de Tropen)
- Lonely Planet Healthy Travel: Central & South America by Lonely Planet
Do you have information we should add to this page? Please share it with us in the comments below so other travelers may benefit as well. Thanks.