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How to keep healthy when travelling in India?

Page last updated 13 November 2018

The standard of healthcare facilities in India varies from place to place. So it is important you a prepared before heading off on your trip.  

Before travelling 

  • Register your trip with Smart Traveller  
  • Make sure you have enough of your regular prescription medicines;
  • Ensure you’re up-to-date with your routine vaccinations 
  • Take out travel insurance - to cover you and your family for medical and other costs resulting from unexpected incidents and accidents
  • Put together a travel kit with medication for pain, diarrhoeal medicine, oral rehydration salts, antiseptic lotion or ointment, adhesive bandages and other wound dressings, insect repellent, sunscreen, latex gloves, thermometer, motion sickness medicine, water purification tablets and compression stockings

During travel     

  • The tap water is India is not safe to drink.
  • It is advised that you drink bottled or filtered water only and check the plastic seal on bottled water is intact. Avoid adding ice to your drinks and check that salad and fruit have been washed with filtered water prior to consumption. 
  • Traveller's diarrhoea is common in India. The best method to protect yourself is to ensure that you wash your hands with soap and water regularly. Where possible, opt for fully cooked fresh food and only eat fruit that you peel yourself.
  • Avoid mosquito bites, as malaria is considered a risk to some travellers in India. In addition, other mosquito-borne illnesses that are present in India include dengue fever, Japanese encephalitis and Zika. Speak with your healthcare professional about whether or not you might need medication for malaria, 4-6 weeks prior to your departure. You can further protect yourself with insect repellent, wearing clothes that cover your arms and legs, and staying in accommodation that has air conditioning, fly nets or screened windows provided.
  • Use condoms to prevent sexually transmitted infections, such as chlamydia, gonorrhoea, human papillomavirus, herpes, syphilis, hepatitis B and HIV. 
  • Diseases such as HIV/AIDS and hepatitis B can also be spread through body fluids such as blood and semen. To protect yourself, do not inject drugs, do not share needles or devices that can break the skin including those used for tattooing, piercings or acupuncture. Vaccinations are available for hepatitis B.


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Sources & Citations

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2018 Yellow Book Traveler’s Health India. Available at: [accessed 10 May 2018]
  2. Australian Immunisation Handbook, 3.2 Vaccination for international travel. Available at: [accessed 10 May 2018]
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, India. Available at: [accessed 10 May 2018
  4. Lonely Planet, Health in India. Available at: [accessed 10 May 2018]
  5. International Association for Medical Assistance to Travellers. Country Health Advice – India. General Health Risks: Dengue. Available at: [accessed 10 May 2018]

SPANZ.SPAS.18.04163a - Date of preparation July 2018