Summer has finally arrived and many of us are looking forward to packing our bags and heading off on holiday. The last thing you want when you’ve been saving furiously and looking forward to jetting off is to spend your holiday in hospital, sleeping off a dreadful hangover or worrying about what you’ve done when under the influence of alcohol, so here are some tips to stay safe abroad:
- Go easy with the tanning - It’s tempting to go all-out and try as get as brown as possible as soon as you land, but try to resist the temptation to sizzle in the sun, as you will probably get burned and sunburn is painful; it will also ruin your next few days of sunbathing, as well as looking dodgy on your holiday snaps. Always ensure that you wear sun cream and use a suitable factor; if you have fair skin, stick to factor 30 or higher. Avoid the midday sun when the sun is very powerful and wear a hat and sunglasses to protect your eyes and your scalp. Remember to re-apply sun cream after you have been swimming and make sure you put cream on your ears, lips and the soles of your feet, as these areas are often missed.
- Drink plenty of water - If you’re hot and sweaty, you will lose more water than normal and you may become dehydrated, so make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day. If you are drinking alcohol, you will need to drink even more water, as alcoholic drinks dehydrate you.
- Watch what you drink - Most of us enjoy a drink or two on holiday, but just because you are abroad that doesn’t mean that you need to go wild, especially as measures are usually larger than at home and drinks are generally much cheaper. Try to pace yourself and always keep an eye on your drink; never leave a drink and then go back to it and be wary of people who are hanging around and offering to buy lots of drinks. If you wouldn’t do something at home, try to stick to the mantra that you won’t do it when you are abroad.
- Practice safe sex - If you have sex abroad, make sure you use protection. It’s easy to get carried away in the heat of the moment with the holiday spirit and probably lots of alcohol, but try to think about the consequences of having unprotected sex and use a condom. Sexually transmitted infections, such as Chlamydia, genital herpes and genital warts, cause unpleasant symptoms and there is also a risk of unwanted pregnancy.
- Get travel insurance - Before you go anywhere overseas, make sure you have travel insurance. Travel insurance is inexpensive and it literally takes two minutes to sort out, but it could make your holiday a lot less stressful and expensive if you happen to fall ill, you have flights cancelled or you lose your baggage or get items stolen.