How to Stay Healthy During Holiday Travel
As the holiday season rolls around, many people head off to reconnect with family and friends or decide to travel abroad. Unfortunately, because the holidays coincide with germ season, travel leaves us exposed to infected people who can ruin our plans. To minimize your risk of falling ill while you’re away, consider the following dos and don’ts of holiday travel.
Avoid Contaminated Surfaces
Airports and airplanes are overrun with people during the holidays. To keep from catching someone else’s germs, avoid touching commonly used items, such as airline magazine, the airport water fountain and airline pillows and blankets.
Be Careful of Airport Bathrooms
Studies have found that airport bathrooms are teaming with E. coli and numerous other germs, which can make us seriously ill. Try not to touch too many surfaces while you’re in the bathroom and be sure to wash your hands for a minimum of 20 seconds before leaving.
Shower as Soon as You Arrive
Odds are your clothes and body will harbor germs by the time you arrive at your destination. Take the time to shower and change clothes as soon as you can to minimize the risk of infection.
Avoid Complementary Items
Numerous hotels provide cookies and other complimentary items for guests. Unfortunately, these provide germs with a perfect opportunity to pass from one hand to another. Be extra cautious and pass on the free snacks, especially if they’re served on a plate at the front desk of the hotel.
Carry Sanitizer with You
Even vigilant travelers have to touch potentially tainted items and surfaces at some point. Since it’s not practical to run to the bathroom to wash your hands after every instance, consider carrying alcohol-based hand sanitizer in your pocket.
Don’t Infect Yourself
Although many people blame sneezes and coughing as the primary avenues for germs, most are actually transmitted by touch. Many times, people infect themselves by touching their eyes, noses or mouths after coming into contact with a contaminated surface. Be mindful of your hands or you might unwittingly make yourself sick.