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How to Travel Without Getting Sick

Traveling is fun and exciting…until the guy next to you starts hacking up a lung. Here’s how to arm yourself against his germs.

Get a Flu Shot

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that vaccines are uber-important. (They’re the No. 1 thing you can do to keep the yuckies away.) The flu shot is offered at doctor’s offices, pharmacies and even some retail stores.

Get Pre-Trip Healthy

The CDC is pretty adamant about sick people staying put and not hopping on crowded planes or buses and infecting the rest of us. Easier said than done. Make sure you aren’t that person coughing in the aisle by amping up your immune system pre-travel. You know the drill: Eat healthy, exercise, drink lots of water and get plenty of rest.

Pack Your Ammo

Eye drops and lip balm can keep your eyes and lips from feeling dry (meaning you’re less likely to rub or touch them). Tissues are good to have too, as well as soap and instant sanitizer in case soap and water aren’t available. Baby wipes can also be handy for wiping down icky surfaces.

Stay Hydrated

Up to 60 percent of your body is water. So, well, water is pretty darn important. Drink it, and you’ll be helping your body do stuff it needs to do well, like move oxygen around your body, digest your food, poop, pee, sweat and, yeah, fight off illness. (All pretty important, if you ask us.) Guzzle the stuff whenever you can, especially on planes, where the air can be very dry.

Wash Up

Don’t want other people’s cooties getting in you? Then keep them out by washing your hands often with soap and water. If you aren’t near water, use instant hand sanitizer. And if you don’t have that either, keep your hands away from your nose, mouth and eyes.

Steer Clear of Those Already Sick

Hear someone sniffling and coughing loudly? Politely keep your distance. (They’ll understand.)

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-- Erin Walters