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Camping Tips

Camping Tips

Camping tips

 

Get ready for your outdoor adventure with our camping tips

2020 has been dubbed the year of the staycation, with many people travelling to different parts of the country to relax, unwind and spend quality time with loved ones. This increase in domestic travel has led to many more people going camping all over the country, and it’s no surprise why! Not only is camping excellent value for money, it allows you to bond with your loved ones in a gorgeous natural setting and enjoy the great outdoors that Ireland has to offer.

Never camped before? Don’t be put off by stories of wet tents, sleepless nights and burnt sausages. Check out our top 10 camping tips to ensure you’re ready for action and have an unforgettable time, no matter what the weather!

1. Do a trial run

We can’t stress enough the importance of constructing your tent before you set off. This is the only way to make sure that you can actually put it together and that everything is in working order. You don’t want to have to figure this out when you arrive at the campsite! Pack extra tent pegs in case some break or go missing – better to be safe than sorry!

2. Buy high-quality equipment

Contrary to popular belief, tents can actually be really comfortable if you have the right supplies. Invest in a decent sleeping mat and sleeping bag to ensure you get your much-needed beauty sleep under the stars. It’s worth getting a bigger tent so you have lots of room for your belongings. Remember, a cramped tent equals cranky campers!

3. Be prepared for rain

Even if the sun is shining and a lengthy stretch of good weather is promised, make sure your tent is waterproof. You never know when the heavens might open, especially if you’re in Ireland. It’s worth lining the inside with bin bags or a plastic sheet so your belongings remain dry throughout your stay.

4. Research campsites

Google is your best friend when it comes to finding the perfect campsite to suit your needs. Read reviews from previous holiday-makers to get a feel for the site before you arrive. Are there enough facilities? Is it child-friendly? Can you buy supplies nearby? These are all things to be considered before you book a place.

5. Pitch perfect

Pitching a tent can be awkward enough – don’t do it in the dark! Give yourself plenty of time to unpack the car and get everything set up before the sun sets. Think about the best place to base yourself for your adventure. Ideally you want to be setting up camp on level ground that isn’t too far from facilities. Look out for wasp nests, insect trails, nettles, poison ivy or anything else that could seriously threaten your happiness.

6. Pack appropriate clothes

When it comes to camping attire, it’s all about layers. The Irish weather is known for being unpredictable and the temperature will drop at night. So, make sure you have some comfy socks and a thermal fleece to throw on. Even if you’re just away for one night, bring a change of clothes and a rain jacket. In the unfortunate event that it’s a wash out at least you’ll have some comfortable clothes to drive home in.

7. Leave no trace

Recently in Ireland, an increase in the number of campers has led to a huge rise in littering levels. It is crucial to respect Mother Nature and leave your campsite as you found it. Bring bin bags with you to gather up rubbish and make sure you dispose of these correctly. ‘Leave no trace’ principles are embraced by campsites all around the country. This also involves being mindful of other visitors and wildlife. For more information please visit www.leavenotraceireland.org

8. Consider glamping

Want to experience nature without roughing it? Glamping, or ‘glamourous camping’, could be for you! In recent years, there has been a huge increase in the number of bell tents and micro-lodges popping up around the country. Everything is set up before you arrive which takes the hassle out of your escapade. And you have the pleasure of knowing you’ll get an amazing night’s sleep in a proper bed.

9. Be careful with food

One of the best things about camping has got to be the food! Barbequed sausages, tinned beans, smores – it’s all part and parcel of the adventure. Bring snacks with you that won’t go off, such as crackers and nuts. Only barbeque in the designated area and cook food through thoroughly. You don’t want to spend your whole trip being sick!

10. Get permission

Planning on going rogue and camping in the middle of nowhere? Remember that you need to have the permission of the local council or landowner beforehand. Some people won’t take kindly to you popping up unannounced. And you never know what wild animals or dangers lie nearby.

 

These tips will have you camping like a champ in no time at all. Make the effort and get out into nature before the summer ends – believe us, it’ll be more than worth it!

If you’re heading off on a camping trip, check out TMB’s Travelshop.ie for essential camping items such as insect repellent and sun cream, mobile power banks, eye masks and travel pillows which will make your camping trip even more stress-free.

Visiting Friends and Relatives Overseas

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Travel health advice for visiting friends and relatives overseas

With the coronavirus pandemic still lingering, people all over the world are yearning to reunite with their loved ones, to share stories and create new memories. As borders begin to re-open and the possibility of travel becomes a reality once again, now is the time to start planning your reunion.

In this blog, we’ve listed our top tips to ensure you remain healthy and safe while visiting your friends and family overseas. Read on to find out more…

Visiting friends and relatives overseas

Visiting friends and relatives overseas

Recommended vaccinations

Vaccinations protect the body against illnesses such as hepatitis A, hepatitis B, rabies and meningitis. If you are visiting friends and relatives overseas in a country where these illnesses are prevalent, such as Thailand, Brazil or India, make sure that your vaccinations are up to date. Your body only maintains protective antibodies against some common diseases as long as it is exposed to that disease.

Reduce the Risk of COVID-19

Amid the current COVID-19 pandemic, it is important for to follow local regulations and government travel advice while visiting friends and relatives overseas to reduce the risk of spreading or contracting coronavirus. Some recommended ways to stay safe from COVID-19 on your travels include wearing face coverings in public spaces where social distance cannot be maintained and ensuring good hand hygiene. Carrying an alcohol-based hand gel is a great way to reduce the spread of the virus while on-the-go. It’s also important to touching as few surfaces as possible and avoiding touching your face with unclean hands.

When visiting friends and relatives overseas, you should also follow government guidelines on social distancing and face coverings, which can vary country-to-country.

Visiting Friends and Relatives Overseas Face Mask

Travelling with children

Visiting your family with the kids? Extra care is needed to ensure children can enjoy themselves without falling ill. Children who have been brought up in Western Europe have no natural protection against many of the diseases that are present in Asia, South America and Africa.

As part of their National Immunisation Programme, all children born in Ireland since 2008 should be covered against Hepatitis B. It’s worth talking with your GP or calling into a TMB clinic to get advice about the other recommended vaccinations for children. In some cases, the child may be so young that they are unable to receive the recommended vaccinations – it’s best to talk with an expert to get all the information you need and access the situation properly.

Sun exposure and dehydration

The sun’s rays in Africa, Asia and South America tend to be a lot stronger than they are here in Ireland. It’s important to protect your skin from sun damage, which is the biggest contributor to dehydration and increases the risk of skin cancer in the future. Bring high-factor sun cream on your travels and seek the shade during the hours when the sun is at its highest. Protect yourself further with a wide-brimmed hat and high-quality sunglasses.

Post-exposure screening

The incubation period for tropical illnesses can be a lot longer than you’d think. If an individual falls ill a few months after travelling, it could still be from their time abroad. Put your health first and consider a post-exposure medical screening after your travels to rule out potentially fatal illnesses. This peace of mind really is priceless!

Zika is also still a major concern for those planning travel to affected areas. The virus is still prevalent in many parts of the world and, as there is no vaccination against it, it is strongly recommended that you are screened upon your return if you suffer from symptoms including fever, muscular aches and pains, headache and runny eyes. These symptoms are very similar to those for the flu so at this time of year it is important to be extra cautious.

Health risks for expats

Another side of this is family and friends returning home. What many don’t realise is that the personal protection against many diseases gained by living in an area for many years is frequently lost when individuals move to a new region where the disease is not prevalent. Individuals returning home need to think long and hard about the diseases they may no longer be immune to.

For example, if you’re originally from West Africa but have been living in Europe for the last few years, you will not have the same number of antibodies to fight against malaria as those who still live in West Africa, friends and family included. It is recommended that you take regular adequate malaria prophylaxis to protect against this potentially fatal disease.

Travel Health

We hope that you find these tips for visiting friends and relatives overseas useful when you reunite with your loved ones around the world. For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB travel health clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals.

Top tips for booking a summer holiday

Make the Most of Your Summer Holiday!

Your summer holiday is your main escape of the year, your chance to relax and laze by the pool while your worries melt away. But is there something that you have forgotten that could destroy your dream getaway?

Sun holidays, adventure holidays, exotic holidays – any kind of break is great, but think before you book as some places may seem ideal, but hidden factors could go against you upon arrival.

 

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Generally, a summer holiday is something that is highly anticipated all year and is well-deserved by the time it comes around. Don’t let your annual escape be ruined by forgetting about the finer details. Take everything into account before you go and reap the benefits while you are away.

Beware of rising temperatures

If you are planning on heading to areas renowned for their heat, try to plan your trip at either the beginning or towards the end of the summer to avoid the highest temperatures. Also, while you may be looking to absorb as much sun as possible, be sure to have an appropriate factor on your skin. The tanned look may be in, but the lobster look is out!

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Tips for booking a Summer Holiday – Be prepared

If it is an exotic getaway you are after, be sure to check for any vaccinations that are recommended or required for the area. Don’t let sickness spoil your summer holiday or get stopped at the airport because you don’t have the required vaccinations for your destination. Also, while an adventure holiday can be amazing, just make sure to pack the essentials, i.e. first aid kit, food and water supplies, mobile phone, map etc. Fail to prepare, prepare to fail!

Stay Safe from COVID-19

Amid the current COVID-19 pandemic, it is important for holidaymakers to follow local rules, regulations and travel advice while abroad to reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus. Effective ways to stay safe from COVID-19 while on holiday include maintaining good hand hygiene by washing your hands in warm soapy water or using an alcohol-based hand gel regularly, touching as few surfaces as possible and avoiding touching your face with unclean hands. Travellers should also follow individual government social distancing guidelines. Wearing face coverings in public spaces where social distance cannot be maintained is also a good way to reduce the risk of contracting coronavirus. Be sure to stay up to date with regulations on social distancing and face coverings, which can vary country-to-country.

For more information please visit Gov.ie Coronavirus Travel Advice

Stay covered

Travel insurance may seem like an unnecessary added cost for your summer holiday – until a volcanic eruption keeps your plane grounded, leaving you stranded in a foreign land. For a small fee you can ensure you’re covered against most disasters while you’re abroad, including losing your luggage en route – a particular problem if you’re planning on hitting up a few different destinations!

Ensure family fun

If it is a family holiday that you’re planning, be sure to regulate the amount of time your kids spend in the sun. Pick a beach with umbrellas or shaded areas to avoid your little ones getting burnt and even sunstroke. Look for campsites or accommodations that have kids clubs to keep them having fun throughout! Pick up some children’s travel accessories before you go to keep them entertained while on the road!

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If you feel ill while away, Tropical Medical Bureau offers a 24/7 emergency hotline to all existing customers. They also offer a post-exposure check-up service if you are feeling ill upon your return.

For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB clinic and book in to speak with one of our qualified professionals.

To book an appointment for vaccinations and see a list of our base and associate clinics, please contact Tropical Medical Bureau on 00-353-1-2715-200 or visit our website www.tmb.ie

Safety Tips for Using Public Transport When Travelling

 

Safety Tips for Using Public Transport When Travelling

Safety Tips for Using Public Transport When Travelling

Never leave luggage unattended

It’s a horrible feeling to have luggage stolen or lost while on your holiday, so try to always keep it as close as possible to you and your group. On a crowded train or bus make sure that you always have sight of larger bags.  Keep your smaller personal items, like a purse or laptop bag, on your lap or between your legs. Making sure that you keep an eye or hand on all of your belongings means that it’s less likely to be taken or accidentally left behind.

Keep important documents and money on you at all times

The last thing anyone wants to lose during their travels is a bank card or their passport. Keep the important things close to you at all times! Wearing a waist belt or making sure you bring a purse that zips closed will help you make sure nothing leaves your possession. This way you will be able to enjoy your holiday along with all of your belongings on hand.

Try not to sleep on public transport alone

You may be tired after a long day of travel, but try your best to stay awake.  If the drowsiness is too much and you are with a companion, try to take turns. public transport 2

You don’t know who could be watching you or targeting you while you’re asleep, so try your best to stay alert and aware of your surroundings. Not only will this make you less of a target for pickpockets, but it’ll also help you make sure that you don’t miss your stop.

Stay Safe from COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, it is important for travellers to reduce the spread of the virus and while social distancing may be difficult to maintain on public transport, there are some things you can do to reduce the risk of contracting the virus. One of the most effective ways to stay safe from Coronavirus while on public transport is by maintaining good hand hygiene by using an alcohol-based hand rub regularly while on-the-go. It is also advised to touch as few surfaces as possible and to avoid touching your face with your hands. Face coverings are also encouraged and compulsory on public transport in some countries to increase protection for both other passengers and staff.

For more information on face coverings please see Gov.ie Guidance on safe use of face coverings.

Plan your route ahead of time

It’s always best to have an idea of where you’re heading before venturing out. Getting lost in a new place can be stressful, but having a plan can help reduce the chances that you end up somewhere unfamiliar and unplanned. It’s always best to be prepared and know the stops that you’re getting off at.

Google Maps have recently implemented a feature which estimates busyness on public transport allowing users to see how crowded a certain bus or train line tends to be at particular times. This is a great way for public transport users to avoid crowds or find an alternative route or different travel time.

More details on Google Maps’ new safety features can be found here.

Try to blend in

Public transport may not be the best place to show off your fancy new jewellery. Tuck necklaces inside your clothing and turn your ring around so that valuable stones aren’t showing, or keep your nice watches and rings inside your purse so they aren’t visible. public transport 3

Wearing your valuable jewellery on public transport will likely make you a target for pickpockets so if you are going to accessorize, try to stick with simple, inexpensive pieces.

Don’t talk with strangers

Having a light-hearted conversation is alright, but don’t share personal details of where you are staying and what you are doing with strangers on public transportation. The person you may be talking to might be perfectly fine, but those who overhear may not have your best interests in mind. It’s always best to be cautious of how much you’re telling others and what they could do with the information you give them.

We hope you found our public transport safety tips helpful. If you are heading off to an exotic adventure, we strongly advise that you book an appointment at your local TMB clinic and get all of the recommended vaccinations.

Travel health tips for backpacking Europe

Travel health tips for backpacking Europe

Backpacking in Europe

 

Discover some top tips for backpacking Europe and staying healthy overseas

From the promenades of Paris to the boulevards of Budapest, Europe’s stunning natural beauty, epic history and amazing cultural diversity is evident at every turn. It’s easy to see why a European tour is high on the bucket lists of backpackers and luxury travellers alike. You may not be visiting a developing country or venturing into the wild but it’s still important to put your health first on your trip. We’ve compiled some top travel health tips for backpacking Europe to ensure you have the best time possible.

Beware of the sun

The strength of the sun in mainland Europe over the summer months should be taken very seriously. Our delicate Irish skin cannot handle extended exposure to the sun’s harmful rays, which cause sunburn and in turn increase the risk of skin cancer. Make sure you wear sunscreen at all times, even when there is cloud cover, and seek the shade.

Stay hydrated

You don’t want your frolics around France or escapades in Estonia to be impaired as a result of tiredness and dehydration.  Drink plenty of water throughout your stay, particularly when you’re out and about sightseeing. A common cause of sickness for travellers is exposure to contaminated water. In some countries, such as Austria and Croatia, it is safe to drink tap water but in others, like Albania and Belarus, you should always buy bottled water or use purification tablets.

Stay Safe from COVID-19

In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, it is important for backpackers to follow local regulations and government travel advice while abroad to reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus. Some ways to stay safe from COVID-19 on your travels include, maintaining good hand hygiene and using an alcohol-based hand gel regularly, touching as few surfaces as possible and avoiding touching your face with unclean hands. Travellers should also follow individual government social distancing guidelines. Wearing face coverings in public spaces where social distance cannot be maintained is also a good way to reduce the risk of coronavirus. Travellers should stay up to date with regulations on social distancing and face coverings, which can vary country-to-country.

Vaccinations

It’s important to have standard vaccinations such as tetanus, poliomyelitis, measles and rubella before you embark on any foreign adventure. Nasty illnesses and infections are rife all over the world and you need to make sure you are protected against these. Call into a TMB clinic to discuss your options with a qualified professional. Don’t forget insect repellent to protect against mosquito bites!

Eat nutritiously

Europe’s culinary delights are famous the world over – think hearty Italian pizza, spicy Spanish tapas, rich German meat feasts and zesty Mediterranean vegetable dishes. Sampling local delicacies will definitely be a highlight of your holiday but it’s important to maintain a balanced diet while you’re away. The temptation may be high but don’t resort to always eating foods that are high in fat and sugar. You may start to feel sluggish which will greatly impede your ability to enjoy your getaway. Remember – everything in moderation!

Pack the essentials

No matter how long or short your trip is, always pack a first-aid kit with the essentials – remedies for headaches, swelling, fever, stomach aches, cuts and bruises, blisters and motion sickness. Carry any prescription medication in your hand luggage in case your baggage gets lost and keep a copy of your prescription with you at all times. If you wear glasses or contact lenses it’s also advised that you obtain a copy of your optical prescription.

Practice good dental hygiene

Don’t forget about your teeth! If you’re going away for an extended period make sure you have a full dental check-up beforehand to address any underlying issues. Brush your teeth at least twice a day and replace your toothbrush every couple of months. Floss regularly to remove trapped food and keep your gums healthy.

Get enough sleep

It’s easy to get excited when you touchdown in fabulous Finland or gorgeous Greece and try to pack in as much as possible. Burning the candle at both ends is not advised as it will ultimately wear your body out and reduce your level of enjoyment. If you have an action-packed day checking out the local sights, take it easy that evening with a relaxed meal and early night. Try to get at least eight hours of sleep to make sure you’re in fine form for the adventures that lie ahead.

So there you have it, some top tips for staying healthy and happy on your European travels. Book an appointment with a TMB consultant to get specific advice for the countries you are visiting. A little preparation and common sense go a long way and will ensure you have an absolutely amazing time!

How to Stay Safe from Coronavirus While on Public Transport

How to Stay Safe from Coronavirus While on Public Transport

how to stay safe from coronavirus on public transport

As COVID-19 restrictions continue to ease and people return to their daily commute, public transport usage has begun to increase once again. But, without a vaccine, many people are wondering how to stay safe from coronavirus while on public transport? Continue reading to find out…

Wear Face Coverings

In line with Government guidance, wearing a face covering is mandatory on public transport from Monday 29th June, to allow for increased capacity on our buses, trains and trams. It is also being encouraged to use face coverings in other situations where it is difficult to maintain social distance. Wearing a face covering may help prevent people who don’t know they have COVID-19 by reducing the spread of respiratory droplets, increasing protection for other passengers on public transport as well as staff.

For more information on face coverings please see Gov.ie Guidance on safe use of face coverings.

Maintain Good Hand Hygiene

One of the most effective ways to stay safe from Coronavirus while on public transport is by maintaining good hand hygiene. Using an alcohol-based hand rub regularly while on-the-go is a great way to reduce the risk of contracting COVID-19. It is also advised to touch as few surfaces as possible and to avoid touching your face with your hands. If you are coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue. Throw the used tissue away into a closed bin and sanitise your hands. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your flexed (bent) elbow.

Social Distance

With the increased use of public transport as the weeks go on, it may be difficult to maintain the recommended social distance of 2 metres from others while on a bus, train or tram. If you cannot keep this distance, it is encouraged to maintain a 1 metre distance where possible, in particular at entrances, exits, at bus stops, platforms or outside of stations. When on public transport, it is also recommended to travel side by side or behind other people rather than facing them to reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus.

Prepare for your Trip

Preparation is key to staying safe from coronavirus on public transport. By planning trips correctly, passengers can significantly reduce the risk of contracting COVID-19, this includes ensuring you have everything required to travel, such as a face covering and alcohol-based hand gel, and avoiding peak travel times where possible. Google Maps have recently implemented a feature which estimates busyness on public transport allowing users to see how crowded a certain bus or train line tends to be at particular times. This is a great way for public transport users to avoid crowds or find an alternative, safer route or different travel time.

More details on Google Maps’ new safety features can be found here.

For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB clinic and book in to speak with one of our qualified professionals.

To book an appointment for vaccinations and see a list of our base and associate clinics, please contact Tropical Medical Bureau on 00-353-1-2715-200 or visit our website www.tmb.ie

Google Maps have added new safety features to help people get around safely

Google Maps have added new safety features to help people get around safely

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Google Maps is one of the most popular navigation apps for travellers – it’s fast, reliable, and it’s just gotten a whole lot better! As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, getting from A to B has become that bit more complicated. In light of this, Google Maps have released some new safety features to help people get around more safely, whether at home or abroad. These new features provide users with vital information relating to their travels and allow them to get to and from their destination as safely as possible. Read on to learn more…

Alerts on COVID-19 Restrictions

The first of the new safety features added to Google Maps is the COVID-19 restriction alerts. The app will now notify users with COVID-19 restrictions which may affect their journey, whether by car or public transport. These alerts include government mandates impacting travel, for example if there is a requirement to wear a mask on public transport. According to Google, transit alerts are available in Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Colombia, France, India, Mexico, Netherlands, Spain, Thailand, United Kingdom and the U.S., with more coming soon.

Google Maps have also introduced driving alerts to notify users if their route is affected by COVID-19 restrictions or checkpoints. This feature also notifies a user travelling to a medical facility, reminding them to confirm their eligibility to attend to avoid being turned away. Google have announced that alerts for medical facilities are now available in Indonesia, Israel, the Philippines, South Korea, and the U.S.

Avoid Crowds on Public Transport

In 2019, Google Maps have implemented a new feature estimating busyness on public transport. Driven by user data, these predictions allow people to see how crowded a certain bus or train line tends to be at particular times. As the world begins to re-open, this feature can be extremely useful in avoiding crowds and finding an alternative, safer route, or time. Users can increase the accuracy of Google Maps’ crowdedness feature by contribute their own experiences via the app.

Accessibility and Security

In recent months, Google Maps launched new safety features giving insights into temperature, accessibility and security onboard public transportation. These features are now available globally and provide users with valuable data from past riders as well as the option to submit their own feedback. For wheelchair users, Google Maps have added more detailed accessibility information, including locations of wheelchair accessible doors, seating, stop buttons and more.

Find more information on how to avoid COVID-19 while travelling here.

For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB clinic and book in to speak with one of our qualified professionals. 

To book an appointment for vaccinations and see a list of our base and associate clinics, please contact Tropical Medical Bureau on 00-353-1-2715-200 or visit our website www.tmb.ie

Coronavirus Treatment: What’s the Latest News?

Coronavirus Treatment: What’s the Latest News?

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Since first reports of Coronavirus in late 2019, the virus has spread to many countries around the world and as the pandemic continues, people in Ireland and all over the world continue to ask the question, is there a coronavirus treatment? While there is no confirmed vaccine or treatment for Covid-19 yet, there has been some positive developments in this area, including treatment trials. Read on to find out the latest news and updates on this…

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced that they are organising a solidarity trial in numerous countries in which some untested treatments for COVID-19 will be compared to each other to discover whether any are effective in treating the virus. This trial will be run from the WHO Headquarters and is expected to last from March 2020 until March 2021.

The trial is specifically for adults over the age of 18, hospitalised with COVID-19 and admitted to a collaborating hospital. The treatments involved in the study are remdesivir, chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir plus ritonavir, and interferon-beta. As part of the study, some of these treatments will be given as daily pills, and some as daily injections.

Patients who fit the above description and have consented to be part of the study will be randomly allocated to receive either standard care alone or standard care and one of the study drugs. The patients will be followed up for the entire length of their hospital stay. The effectiveness of the drugs will be determined by a number of variables including length of hospital stay and time to first receiving ventilation.

All of the drugs being used in the WHO solidarity trial have been shown to be reasonably safe. These drugs are used routinely to treat other conditions. All participants in the study will receive the usual care for people with COVID-19 in each location as well as the selected medication. While it is possible that one or more of the drugs may reduce the severity of COVID-19, the need for ventilation and the risk of death, as with any medical trial, there are also known side effects to each of the drugs. Find out more about the WHO solidarity trial, its potential risks and rewards here.

Main contacts for the WHO Solidarity Trial

Dr Ana Maria Henao Restrepo, henaorestrepoa@who.int

Dr Vasee Moorthy, moorthyv@who.int

Dr Marie-Pierre Preziosi, preziosim@who.int

Coronavirus Facts and Myths

Coronavirus Facts and Myths

coronavirus facts and myths

The new coronavirus, Covid-19, was first recognised in December 2019 in China and now has been reported in over 183 countries and territories throughout the world – and likely to infect many more in the days ahead. Many of the more sensible commentators have outlined that the risk of contracting Covid-19 is small and, in most cases, the disease it is not life-threatening. However, social media is overflowing with advice regarding Covid-19, and the facts which we should be trusting are often diluted by the mass of misinformation and doing the rounds. Because of this, we have decided to put together this blog of Coronavirus facts and myths.

Should you lock yourself away from humanity until the virus is controlled or can you, with sensible precautions, get on with your life? Are these the ‘final days’ and is humanity doomed? The travel industry has taken a massive knock and one main concern affecting this is, to misquote Shakespeare, “To Travel or Not to Travel? That is the question.”

So, let’s try to dispel some of the more common myths which are circulating and see can we get a bit of perspective to the situation…

Myth – Getting Covid-19 is a death sentence

Current information shows that only very few of those who contract this disease will die. This is mainly in the more vulnerable people – those who have an underlying health condition or are in older age. For the majority of those infected, the virus will result in typical Flu symptoms and should be fine with treatment.

Myth – Covid-19 is more contagious than the Flu or Measles

The latest information shows that it is more contagious than Flu, but a lot less than Measles. Remember, annually the Flu infects about 1 billion people with over ½ million deaths worldwide.

Myth – If one person on a plane or in a train has the disease everybody will be infected

The risk is extremely high for those within 1m of an infected person who is coughing or sneezing openly. However, if an individual uses tissues or coughs/sneezes into the elbow region, the risk will be considerably lowered.

Myth – Hand gels are the best means of protecting myself

While good quality hand-gels are helpful, careful washing of your hands, avoiding touching your face and staying away from those with obvious symptoms (flu like illness, coughing, runny eyes, fever etc) is the best way to avoid contracting the illness.

Please Note: hand gels are not effective if your hands are visibly soiled or very dirty.

Myth – Face masks will protect me from contracting Covid-19

Unless you are using a very specialised face mask, the air surrounding you will leak in around the edges of the mask and it is just as though you were not using the mask at all. Masks are helpful to catch some of the virus particles from those who already have the disease and are coughing but they need to be changed regularly and very carefully, otherwise they are a risk factor. If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with suspected Covid-19 infection.

Myth – If I buy food in the supermarket and then boil or cook it for our meals that should kill any virus that might be lurking

This is true but, the problem may be from you handling the food before it is heated. Take care and wash your own hands regularly after touching anything which could have been contaminated. This hand washing advice is hugely recommended after using public transport or after being on an escalator.

Myth – There is a homeopathy vaccine available

Currently, there is absolutely no vaccine available against coronavirus Covid-19 at this time and there is not likely to be one available for some time.

Myth – All vaccines are useless against Covid-19

Technically at this time that is perfectly correct. However, we do know that most of the serious cases with this respiratory viral disease are among those with an underlying health issue. For example, in many of the more serious cases of Flu it may not be the virus itself which kills the individual but, rather an associated or secondary bacterial infection. The illness associated with Covid-19 may leave that individual more at risk of other infectious diseases. On that basis it is wise for those at a particular risk to ensure they are up to date with the yearly Flu vaccine but also to consider having vaccination cover against Pneumococcal disease which is a serious bacterial infection affecting the respiratory system

Myth – International travel is a huge risk and should always be avoided

At this time, the risk of contracting the disease from undertaking flights or visiting most countries of the world is known to be minimal. It is wise to avoid regions where there is a very significant amount of cases being reported but, for most destinations, the risk remains very small.

Myth – Covid-19 is the most deadly disease to hit mankind

While Covid-19 is spreading quickly in some regions of the world and has a mortality rate of 2-3%, it is still not by any means as deadly as other diseases. For example, SARS killed 10% of those who became infected and MERS is responsible for between 30% to 40% of deaths among those who get the disease.

Myth – The new coronavirus can be transmitted through goods manufactured in China or any country reporting Covid-19 cases

Even though Covid-19 can last on surfaces from a few hours up to several days (depending on the type of surface), it is highly unlikely that the virus will persist on a surface after being moved, travelled, and exposed to different conditions and temperatures. If you think a surface may be contaminated use a disinfectant to clean it. After touching it, clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.

Myth – Coronavirus Covid-19 can be transmitted through mosquito bites

Coronavirus Covid-19 cannot be transmitted through mosquito bites. To date there has been no information nor evidence to suggest that it could be transmitted by mosquitoes. Covid-19 is a respiratory virus which spreads primarily through droplets generated when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose.

Myth – Eating garlic can help prevent infection of the new coronavirus

Garlic is a healthy food that may have some antimicrobial properties. However, there is no evidence from the current outbreak to suggest that eating garlic has protected people from coronavirus Covid-19.

Myth – Cocaine can protect against a coronavirus

Cocaine cannot protect against any coronavirus or other infective diseases. It is an addictive, dangerous drug that should not be used under any circumstances.

For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB clinic and book in to speak with one of our qualified professionals.

To book an appointment for vaccinations and see a list of our base and associate clinics, please contact Tropical Medical Bureau on 00-353-1-2715-200 or visit our website www.tmb.ie

Travel after Coronavirus

Travel after Coronavirus

travel after coronavirus

In today’s world of lockdowns and social distancing, travel has been stopped in its tracks. Airlines are grounded, hotels are closed, and cruise ships are docked. When will travel start again? What will travel look like post Covid? Many experts are advising it could be as far away as October before we start to see holidaymakers jetting off for some Autumn sun. However, when travel does begin again, it will be very different to what we are used to. Read on below to find out what industry experts are predicting travel after coronavirus will look like…

Rapid COVID-19 Testing in Airports

Just this week Emirates announced that they are the first airline to begin rapid pre-flight COVID-19 testing. Tests are performed in the group check-in area, with results available in just 10 minutes. It is quite possible that temperature checks will also be introduced in airports all over the world.

In China, some aircrafts are now landing at intermediary airports for passenger health checks, before flying onto bigger cities. One would imagine that processes such as this will delay the boarding process, which may mean travellers will have to arrive even earlier for their flights.

travel after coronavirus

Compulsory Masks When Flying

All passengers and crew could be told that they must wear masks in order to travel. Wizz Air has said it is looking into “all sorts of measures” for when the skies open back up, including protective gear for crew and passengers.

What will travel look like after Coronavirus?

Seat Sales to Encourage Travel

In the past, post SARS, 9/11 and the 2008 crash, all airlines introduced big sales to encourage bookings. Covid-19 is obviously a very different situation, but headline grabbing sales will stimulate demand.

Check out this Business Traveller interview with Richard Tams, Tailwind Advisory where he says “the promotions are going to be a combination of garnering people’s interest in flying again and capturing people’s imaginations for foreign parts and warmer climates.” Ryanair CEO Michael O’Leary has also been quoted as saying, “The minute we’re about to start flying again we’ll start doing seat sales, and so will every other airline.”

travel after coronavirus

High Airline Fares

When flight routes reopen, will airlines have to implement social distancing measures? If so, then this could result in airlines being forced to fly half-empty cabins. Some have suggested all middle seats will be blocked as a means of enforcing social distancing.

Once the initial seat sales have ended, travel industry experts have advised that these social distancing measures could result in airlines doubling the price of their tickets.

Gradual Opening of Routes and Destinations

Unfortunately, there is no switch which will turn every route back on and open every destination back up. This will be a gradual process which will be done in stages. Long haul routes will start at two to three times per week initially – daily frequencies will not happen for a long time.

travel after coronavirus

Staycations and Short Haul

During the gradual removal of restrictions, people will want to stay close to home. Staycations and slow travel will be what most people opt for. For holidaymakers that are confident enough to travel by plane, short haul destinations will be very popular.

This trend is very evident in parts of Asia, where citizens are slowly returning to normal and starting to travel again.

Immunity Certificates

Travellers may be required to present immunity certificates at the airport. The Tropical Medical Bureau Group, TMB (IE), Nomad Travel (UK), in association with pharmaceutical and vaccine partners, propose that guidelines in regard to an immunity certificate for COVID-19 must be developed urgently to allow policy makers and public health bodies provide a globally accepted certification of immunity.

travel after coronavirus

Cleanliness and Hygiene

Hotels, airlines, airports and cruise ships will all need to address their current cleaning and hygiene protocols and ask themselves “are we doing enough?”.

All areas that travellers interact with will need to visibly be cleaned to the highest standard to ensure the confidence and comfort of passengers and guests. Expect to see hand sanitiser everywhere you go.

Health Code Apps

Having an app on your phone which shows your health status and travel history could soon become the new norm. Millions of people in China are now using a ‘health code service’ app which can be scanned by authorities to show a person’s status.

Each status has a different colour – for example, a person with a green code can travel freely, a person with a yellow code should be at home in isolation (if they have just returned from travelling or have symptoms) and a person with a red code is a confirmed coronavirus patient and should be at home isolating.

Life will slowly return to normal, albeit a new normal, and people will start to travel again. What we do now determines how soon this new normal will arrive. So, stay home, stay safe and wash your hands! Are you currently working from home? Read our blog on ‘how to stay healthy at home’ here.

 

Coronavirus Update Ireland

Coronavirus Update Ireland

Coronavirus Update Ireland 2

This blog will aim to serve as a source of information for Covid-19 or Coronavirus. This blog will be updated daily, or more often as required. The focus of this blog will be medical opinion and medical advice only. Only authoritative sources will be used. Read on below for the latest Coronavirus Update Ireland.

16th April 2020

Restrictions Extended

The government is urging everyone to stay in their home wherever possible until Tuesday 5 May. Staying at home is the best way to minimise the risk of COVID-19 to your friends, families and communities.

These measures were initially in place until 12 April but they have been extended as they are making a huge difference in reducing the spread of COVID-19. Staying in means staying in control of this outbreak.

WHO #HealthyAtHome campaign begins

Find out more about the #HealthyAtHome campaign here.

Q & A on COVID-19

Still got questions? Check out this useful Q & A published by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Click here to read.

How to stay healthy while working from home

How to stay healthy while working from home

how-to-stay-healthy-while-working-from-home

With most of the country now working from home, more and more people are wondering how to stay healthy during this stressful time. Yes, you can exercise every day and try to eat right, but there are also several other things you should pay attention to in order to keep yourself safe and well while you work from home. We spoke to our resident Doctors and Nurses at TMB who shared the following tips with us.

Comply with Government Advice and Warnings

The government has said that you should ‘stay home as much as possible’. They have also said that gatherings of 4 or more people are now banned, unless they are from the same household. You should only leave home for essential travel such as grocery shopping – and even that should be as little as possible. Avoid public transport where possible.

Wash your hands

This message has not changed. Continue to wash your hands on a regular basis with soap and water, or with an alcohol-based solution. This will definitely help to kill viruses that may be on your hands.

Clean Packaging

Clean any vegetable packaging, or other plastic packaging, with an antibacterial wipe (plastic) before opening. Always wash your hands after handling loose fruit and vegetables, or anything else that other people may have handled, at the supermarket.

Stay Hydrated

When working from home it is very important to stay hydrated. Keep a pint glass on your desk and continue to refill it– aim to drink at least 4 pints throughout the day. Staying hydrated will keep you alert, keep joints lubricated, regulate your body temperate and assist in removing waste. This is one of our top tips for how to stay healthy when working at home.

Nutrition – Don’t Overeat

When working at home it can be so easy to snack your way through the day! Try and fill the house with healthy snacks such as nuts or fruit. Prep your lunch the night before. Get into a routine with your meals. Eat regularly throughout the day.

Take a lunch break

This one is important. Try and get away from your desk and get some fresh air. Eat your lunch in the back garden. Read a book. Listen to a podcast. Whatever you do, just be sure to take a break.

Mind your Mental Health

Whether it’s yoga, sudoku, crosswords, reading or listening to an audiobook, keeping your brain active and not completely focused on COVID-19 news is very important. The HSE has several resources here on minding your mental health.

Ticks

If you are taking advantage of the good weather and working in the garden, then one thing to be aware of is ticks. Wearing long slacks tucked into your trousers will help in warding off unwanted ticks. Checking your body for ticks after a day in the garden is also advised.

Wear SPF 

If you are eating lunch in the garden or tending to the flower beds it is important that you protect yourself against the harmful rays of the sun. Make sure that you apply sunscreen and wear a hat where possible.

For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB clinic and book in to speak with one of our qualified professionals. 

To book an appointment for vaccinations and see a list of our base and associate clinics, please contact Tropical Medical Bureau on 00-353-1-2715-200 or visit our website www.tmb.ie

 

Staying Safe and Healthy in Peru

Staying Safe and Healthy in Peru

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The Covid-19 pandemic has caused a lot of uncertainty with regards to travel in recent days and weeks. One of the problems facing a number of people in South America, Peru in particular, is difficulty returning home due to closed borders and cancelled flights. TMB is here to help so, in this blog, we want to help you to stay safe and healthy in Peru.

Safety

The crime rate in Peru, including serious crime and violent crime, is high and therefore it is always necessary to be vigilant. Take particular caution at bus terminals and when taking taxis. To ensure you are staying safe and healthy in Peru, as a rule of thumb you should avoid isolated areas especially after dark. In case of an emergency dial 105 to contact the National Police. Check out our top safety tips for using public transport when travelling here.

Health

Amid the current Covid-19 pandemic, please ensure that you are washing your hands with soap thoroughly, or alcohol gel is helpful when hand-washing facilities are not available. On top of this, it is important to avoid people with flulike symptoms, avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth if you’re hands are not clean and practice good general hygiene at all times. As the Covid-19 pandemic is a rapidly changing situation we advise that you check the following websites regularly

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control

The World Health Organisation

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre

If you are unwell and develop symptoms of fever, cough, or shortness of breath you should stay at home / in your hotel and avoid public places, university or work, phone your GP or emergency department for medical advice, rather than turning up in person. Make sure that, when you phone, you mention that you have recently travelled AND had exposure. These health services will arrange for you to get medical help.

Please be aware that mosquito-borne infections such as malaria, yellow fever and dengue fever are also found in Peru, although these are rare in temperate regions. There is currently an outbreak of Zika virus in South America and therefore it is essential that Irish Citizens, in particular those with a weakened immune system or pregnant women follow guidelines from the HPSC.

Stay Informed

On 15th March, the Peruvian president declared a state of emergency and announced that Peru would close its borders to curb the spread of Covid-19. Quarantine is immediately being applied and it’s vital that Irish citizens comply with these rules – please see full details here.

Make sure you stay informed of what’s going on around you – ensure you are getting information from credible, reliable sources only, monitor local, national and international media and keep in contact with your hotel or tour operator.  You can download the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Travel Wise App which helps Irish citizens to stay safe and informed while travelling.

On the 22nd March Tanaiste and Foreign Affairs Minister, Simon Coveney, has confirmed that the government is arranging a charter flight to fly Irish citizens out of Peru. This flight will be operated by British Airways and is expected to fly in the middle of this week.

Communication

Often in can be easier to get help staying safe and healthy in Peru locally, for example from your tour operator, hotel or local contacts. However, if you do need assistance, while there is no Irish Embassy in Peru, you can contact the Honorary Consulate in Lima, the Irish Embassy in Mexico or the Irish Embassy in Chile.

For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB clinic and book in to speak with one of our qualified professionals.

To book an appointment for vaccinations and see a list of our base and associate clinics, please contact Tropical Medical Bureau on 00-353-1-2715-200 or visit our website www.tmb.ie

Does ibuprofen increase your risk of catching Coronavirus?

Does ibuprofen increase your risk of catching Coronavirus?

There are a number of stories circulating online which are stating that if you take ibuprofen it can increase your risk of catching Coronavirus. But it true? We spoke to Dr Kunal Patel, Travel Health Physician at the Tropical Medical Bureau and asked him ‘does ibuprofen increase your risk on catching Coronavirus?’ Here is what he told us.

  • Currently there is NO evidence at this time to support this as this has been based on a proposed hypothesis raised in the Lancet (Respiratory Medicine).
  • There are studies, such as this hypothesis, that suggest ibuprofen use during a respiratory infection can result in worsening of the disease or other complications BUT there is no CLEAR evidence of this.
  • The recently published hypothesis focused on patients with diabetes and hypertension, who currently are considered already vulnerable to COVID-19. These patients take medication that is essential for their conditions. Said medication raises levels of a certain enzyme within the blood. It has been shown that other types of coronavirus, such as SARS can bind to this enzyme. Therefore, the authors hypothesised that diabetes and hypertension treatment with drugs that can increase this enzyme, including ibuprofen, increases the risk of developing severe and fatal COVID-19.
  • The key word to remember is HYPOTHESIS and there is no actual, current research into ibuprofen and the new coronavirus. There is currently NO evidence to suggest that someone who is low risk (not vulnerable) and taking ibuprofen for symptoms of COVID-19 is putting themselves at further risk of complications.
  • It is therefore advised not to compromise your current medication regime, especially if you have diabetes and/or hypertension.

Remember to always use trusted sources when sourcing information about Coronavirus such as WHO, CDC, ECDC or TMB.

Want to read some more facts and myths about coronavirus? Please click here

Why do we need a new flu vaccine every year?

The Flue 5

Why do we need a new flu vaccine every year?

It’s that time of year again. Some of your friends, family members and co-workers are beginning to succumb to the irritating illness we all know too well- the flu. You may ask yourself the question – if I was vaccinated last year, do I need to get the flu vaccination again? The answer is YES! So, why do we need a new flu vaccine every year?

The flu changes each year

One major reason why you need to get vaccinated each year is that the flu changes every year.  Yes, you heard us right! The flu virus is constantly changing.FLu vaccine every year

Though it is commonly referred to simply as ‘the flu’, the actual virus going around each year is always different. It is an ever-changing virus. In response to this, medical professionals need to update the flu vaccine each season, which protects us from the new strains.

Your antibodies grow weaker over time

Flu vaccinations are needed each year to ensure you have continuous protection. Though you may have received a flu vaccine last year, your body’s immune system from previous vaccinations gradually decreases over time. The FLu 4

By the time flu season comes around, your body’s immunity to it is virtuality non-existent. By getting a flu shot each year, you are protecting yourself from new strains, whilst also boosting your continuous protection.

The flu vaccine is the most effective way to prevent illness.

It really is that simple. The CDC estimates that an individual who receives a flu vaccine reduces their risk of contracting the illness by up to 61%!

Immunization is an easy and proactive way to protect yourself from the discomfort. However, if you do catch the flu after immunization, various studies show that the vaccine will still provide you with various benefits.

The vaccinations available to the public typically protect you from three to four different strains of the flu! The antibodies that your body developed from your sickness may only protect you from that one strain- leaving open the possibility of getting sick again.

Getting vaccinated helps protect your loved ones

If you get vaccinated during flu season, you may also be protecting those around you. family-with-flu

This includes others who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, like children and senior citizens. By vaccinating yourself, you are less likely to transmit influenza to others. This means you are not only keeping yourself healthy but the ones you care about most!

 

We hope you found our ‘Why do we need a new flu vaccine every year?’ blog helpful!

For more information on the benefits of the flu shot, please visit our website or your local TMB clinic.

How to prevent the flu

How to prevent the flu

It’s that time of the year again! The days are getting shorter, there’s a nip in the air and you may just find yourself struggling to get warm in the evenings. For some, this period marks the beginning of the dreaded flu.
Wondering how to prevent the flu? Follow our expert health advice below on how to prevent the flu this winter!

Clean your hands

how to prevent the flu

This may seem like common sense, but you’d be surprised how many people become ill during winter due to bad hygiene.

Our top tip is to regularly wash your hands using warm water and soap.

Hands are a breeding site for germs so keeping them clean is the first step in preventing colds and the flu. It’s also a good idea to bring hand sanitizer in your bag to keep those germs away while you’re on the go!

Keep surfaces clean

how to prevent the flu
Whether it’s your desk in work or your counter top at home, ensure all surfaces are disinfected frequently in order to prevent the spread of the flu virus.

This doesn’t have to be a gruelling job – use disinfectant wipes to quickly get rid of the dirt and grime.

Get the flu vaccination

how to prevent the flu
Our ‘How to prevent the flu this winter’ list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the reliable flu vaccination!

Getting a flu vaccination between September and October each year greatly reduces your risk of catching the flu – especially for the elderly, international travellers and other high-risk categories.

A flu immunisation ensures your body is ready to fight germs, even before you have been exposed to them.

Avoid people with the flu

how to prevent the flu
If your colleague or loved one is ill, try to keep as much distance as possible.

Flu germs are highly contagious and tend to spread like wildfire from the infected.

Get your heart pumping with regular exercise

how to prevent the flu
Jogging around the block, sweating it out in the gym or two-stepping in that community dance class not only works wonders for your physique – it also helps to improve your immunity.

So, get your heart pumping to strengthen your body and defences.

Take in plenty of Vitamin C

how to prevent the flu

Wondering how to prevent the flu? Vitamin C-rich foods, such as citrus fruits, are well-known for protecting against immune system deficiencies.

If you’re struggling to get your recommended daily allowance – take a Vitamin C supplement!

We hope you enjoyed our expert tips on how to prevent the flu this winter!

Want to know more? Check out CDC‘s informational video on flu prevention below:


Worried about getting the flu? Call into your local TMB clinic to find out more about the flu vaccination.

5 best travel mosquito nets

5 best travel mosquito nets

Whether you’re a backpacker, camper or a seasonal traveller, mosquito nets are an essential part to any travel kit. Mosquitos can carry potentially deadly illnesses so in order to enjoy your adventure to the fullest it’s important to protect yourself while they’re most active and you’re at your most vulnerable.

Check out the 5 best travel mosquito nets that will help you sleep safe, sound and protected during your next trip:

Double Box Mosquito Net
€25

5 best travel mosquito nets

The BoxNet is spacious and comfortable with potentially the largest enclosed volume of any net style.

When hung from all four points it allows good air circulation and is therefore cool to sleep under. It’s also possible to hang it from just two points to form a wedge shape.

Because these nets are more time consuming to put up, they’re probably better suited to longer term accommodation.

Double Wedge Mosquito Net
€355 best travel mosquito nets

The MicroNet is designed for compactness and versatility. Using the unique integrated ‘QuickHang System’, the MicroNet can be positioned and hung in a matter of seconds.

The spreader bar ensures that the net hangs away from the body, improving protection and ensuring good airflow.

The nylon skirt protects the mesh when folding the net under a mattress.

Mosquito Cot Net
€20

5 best travel mosquito nets

Made from breathable lightweight fabric, this mosquito net is ideal for use on cots, cribs, prams and pushchairs.

The elasticated edge fits most standard cot designs, while the fine mesh construction allows clear visibility.

Whether at home or abroad, this travel mosquito net protects little ones against harmful stings and bites when sleeping.

Single Box Mosquito Net
€22

best travel mosquito nets

The BoxNet is spacious and comfortable with potentially the largest enclosed volume of any net style – which is why it has earned its place in the 5 best travel mosquito nets!

When hung from all four points it allows good air circulation and is therefore cool to sleep under.

It is also possible to hang it from just two points to form a wedge shape.

Single Wedge Mosquito Net
€25

best travel mosquito nets

Sleeping alone will be a breeze with the single wedge mosquito net. No need to spray yourself with bug spray before bed because the net ensures there will be no bugs around!

Completely secure yourself within the bed by folding the net under a mattress to stay bug-bite free.

So, there you have it – the 5 best travel mosquito nets!

For more travel health tips and advice call into your local TMB clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals.

Zika Virus 2019 – Everything you need to know

Zika Virus 2019

It’s difficult to forget the panic of 2015/2016, when the Zika virus made its debut in South America. This little-known virus was linked to a number of birth defects in thousands of new-born babies whose mothers were infected by the virus whilst pregnant. And just as quick as it reared its head – the Zika virus seemingly disappeared.

But just last month, the World Health Organization updated its guidance for travellers planning to visit areas where Zika is known.

Read on for Tropical Medical Bureau’s advice as well as everything you need to know about the Zika virus 2019.

What is the Zika Virus 2019?

Zika Virus is a disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes, similar in many ways to the Dengue Fever or Chikungunya.

Zika is mostly spread through the bite of Aedes mosquitoes, but it can also spread through sex with an infected person, so couples should talk to their doctors about risks before travelling.

What are the symptoms of Zika Virus?

The incubation period (time from infection to when you first develop the symptoms) is usually 3 to 5 days and typical symptoms include fever, muscular aches and pains, headache and runny eyes – all very similar to flu like symptoms.

However, in many cases only a small number of those infected develop symptoms sufficient enough to cause problems.

Who is at risk?

It is now accepted that there is an association with foetal abnormality, including microcephaly, for women who become pregnant during infection.

Zika Virus 2019

Dr Graham Fry, Medical Director of Tropical Medical Bureau, has said of the connection between the Zika Virus and pregnancy; “It is now recognised that there is a direct link between Zika infection and a number of foetal abnormalities and that the risk continues throughout pregnancy. However the risk is almost certainly higher if the infection occurs during the first trimester.”

How can you prevent against the virus?

There is no vaccine against Zika viral infection, similar to many other mosquito borne diseases. The main protection against the Zika Virus is to avoid travel to at-risk areas and also to avoid mosquito bites by using insect repellents.

The current international advice is that those travelling to potential Zika at-risk regions of the world should avoid conception for between 2 to 3 months after exposure.

Have you travelled and worried about the Zika Virus 2019?

For those who have been in regions of the world where Zika is known to exist it is possible to run antibody tests to see if infection has occurred.  Be sure to get in touch with Tropical Medical Bureau and visit your local clinic for medical advice.

If you are concerned about the Zika Virus 2019 following a trip or before you travel please see travel medical advice from Tropical Medical Bureau on 1850 487674 or visit www.tmb.ie.

How to choose insect repellent

How to choose insect repellent

how to choose insect repellent

Whether you’re young or old, travelling to exotic destinations or just popping out to your back garden – it’s super important to consider the different types of insect repellent. Because, let’s face it, who likes itchy insect bites?

So, don’t let insects put a dampener on your summer and read on to hear all about how to choose insect repellent based on your needs.

DEET

DEET has been used as an effective insect repellent since it was invented in the 1940’s. DEET doesn’t harm insects, rather it just deters them by blocking the neurons and receptors that insects use to locate humans.

The rule is that the higher the DEET concentration in your repellent product the longer your protection.

TMB Extreme is ideal for extreme tropical conditions and family travel. It contains 30% DEET as well as micro-encapsulated DEET which is released slowly over the period of wear – this reduces the amount that needs to be applied to the skin.

One application continues to be effective for up to 12 hours and it can be used on children from age 2+.

Non-DEET

People with sensitive skin or babies under six months, can use non-DEET insect repellent that relies on natural ingredients to deter insects.

However, you need to consider your location and level of activity before choosing a repellent.

TMB Outdoors contains 20% saltidin. This DEET-free insect repellent is an excellent broad spectrum repellent for outdoor enthusiasts, gardeners or anyone spending extended periods outdoors.

Made with micro encapsulated technology, saltidin is released slowly during the period of wear giving longer lasting protection than other repellents on the market.

Cream or lotion?

Choosing an insect repellent goes deeper than the ingredients in the product – the application is also super important.

Although not everyone likes the feeling of cream on a hot day, it’s a good source of protection as you can control where it’s going.

If you don’t like to use product on your skin, try out the Mosqui-Go Electric, a simple tablet form mosquito killer that gets to work the moment you slot it into a plug socket.

But remember – an application directly to your skin is always the most effective.

We hope you enjoyed our top tips on how to choose insect repellent!

For more travel health tips and advice call into your local TMB clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals.

How to stay fit while travelling

How to stay fit while travelling
how to stay fit while travelling

Whether you’re jetting off on your next big adventure or heading away on a business trip, feeling healthy and happy in your own skin has the power to enhance any travel experience!

Read our tips on how to stay fit while travelling to help you feel energized throughout your next journey.

Start as you mean to go on
how to stay fit while travelling

Starting your day with a healthy breakfast is always important!
Breakfast fuels your energy, gets your metabolism pumping and will reduce the chances of you over-eating throughout the day.

Avoid eating out
how to stay fit while travelling

Instead of eating out every day, why not check out the local produce in the food shops?

If you’re wondering how to stay fit while travelling, investing in healthy food is always a great place to start.

It will help you save money and will make it easier to keep your healthy diet on schedule.

Hydration is key
how to stay fit while travelling 3

Keeping hydrated is crucial for your health and well-being so drink plenty of water during your travels.

Water will also help regulate your body temperature if you’re in a hot country

Choose to walk whenever possible
how to stay fit while travelling

Wondering how to stay fit while travelling? Try to get those legs moving and walk as much as you can.

Walking is a great way to burn off a few calories, to keep your metabolism moving and to relax the mind.

Many cities also offer walking tours so you can stay fit whilst learning about the history of your surroundings.

Practice yoga
how to stay fit while travelling

Keep your mind, body and spirit finely tuned with some yoga.

Yoga practice helps circulation problems, improves the quality of your sleep and, of course, is a simple way to stay fit whilst travelling abroad.

Practice your own yoga routine in the morning or see if there’s a local class available on your travels.

Make the most of the sea or the pool
how to stay fit while travelling 6

If your staying in a destination near the sea or the pool, make the most of it!

Whether you want to swim some laps or splash around in the sea – there are so many things you can do in the water to stay fit.

Discover the outdoors with a hike
how to stay fit while travelling 7

There is no better way to take in stunning scenery or fresh air than a hike.

Hiking is a great cardio exercise as well as a great way to discover the outdoors of your chosen destination.

Don’t forget to wear the right footwear and to take a bottle of water along with you to keep you hydrated at all times!

We hope you enjoyed our tips on how to stay fit when travelling.

Thinking of your next adventure? Visit us at one of our TMB clinics and speak to a qualified professional about the different vaccinations you may require.

Top LGBTQ Travel Destinations 2019

Top LGBTQ Travel Destinations 2019

Are you a self-proclaimed wanderluster on the look out for the next up and coming destination complete with a vibrant culture and a thriving LGBTQ community?

Well, look no further because we’ve put together our expert list on the top LGBTQ travel destinations to make your travel planning that little bit easier!

Read on for our list of the top LGBTQ travel destinations 2019:

Berlin

Top gay travel destinations 2019 Berlin

Heaving with rich history, stunning architecture and a great up and coming LGBTQ scene – the city of Berlin easily earns its place on the top LGBTQ travel destinations 2019.

Check out the Brandenburg gate, take in the striking artworks at the East Side Gallery and after a long day of exploring, pop into Möbel Olfe for a craft beer or to Blond for a cocktail and an exhilarating drag queen show.

Cape Town

top lgbtq travel destinations 2019
With a celebrated and vibrant community, Cape Town is always top of the list for anyone on the look out for an exotic LGBTQ adventure.

Once Table Mountain and the Cape of Good Hope have been explored and experienced, why not try out Beefcakes Burger Bar for a drag show?

If you plan on visiting Cape Town in December – try out the Mother City Queer Project, considered one of the ultimate gay costume parties in Africa.

Amsterdam
Top LGBTQ friendly destinations 2019 Amsterdam

With its vibrant culture scene and picturesque streets, the capital of the Netherlands is a truly unique destination.

Home to Europe’s first ever gay bar, Amsterdam boasts some of the most welcoming LGBTQ areas along its famed canals. Picture quirky clubs, renowned drag queens and everything in between.

Copenhagen
Top LGBTQ travel destinations 2019

As the host of WorldPride 2021, Copenhagen is renowned for being a LGBTQ friendly city.

Once you’re finished exploring the Tivoli Gardens and indulging in Danish pastries, head to Warehouse9; a performance space famed for its performance art and activism or make your way to Club Christopher to dance the night away.

Barcelona
Top LGBTQ travel destinations 2019

The spectacular city of Barcelona is renowned for being a city committed to diversity.

Known for its art and architecture, be sure to check out the Casa Milá and snap an Instagram at Park Guell.

Fancy a relaxing day in the sun? Pack your beach bag and make your way to Mar Bella beach!

Rio de Janeiro
Top LGBTQ Travel Destinations 2019

Often referred to as ‘the city of contrasts’, Rio de Janeiro is defined by its breath-taking beauty and its glorious LGBTQ scene.

Explore the colourful streets of Rio, head to a pool party in Barra, top up your tan at the beach of Ipanema or grab a caipirinhas in the flamboyant venue of Le Boy.

Montreal

top lgbtq travel destinations 2019
Home to the famous Cirque de Soleil, the Canadian city of Montreal has a colourful narrative that not only invites, but celebrates the LGBTQ community.

If you’re visiting during the month of October, check out their Black and Blue Festival – an electronic festival that raises both awareness and money for HIV/AIDS.

Another area worth experiencing is the famed ‘Gay Village’ with it’s eccentric bars and after hour clubs.

Tel Aviv

top lgbtq travel destinations 2019
With Israeli governments promoting LGBTQ equality for more than a decade, it should come as no surprise that Irael’s Tel Aviv has gained a reputation for being one of the top LGBTQ destinations.

Take a walking tour and discover more about Tel Aviv’s LGBTQ history, grab a drink in Evita – one of Tel Aviv’s oldest gay bars or go for a swim along Hilton beach.

And there we have it: the top LGBTQ travel destinations 2019!

Looking for more travel advice? Check out our other blog posts or get in contact with your local TMB clinic.

Top Business Travel Gadgets 2019

Top Business Travel Gadgets 2019

top 5 travel gadgets 2019

You’re traipsing through the airport with an abundance of thoughts running through your head regarding your business trip, one of them being – please don’t let my phone battery die before I land!

Sound familiar? Well, if you’ve ever travelled for work – you can probably identify with the above.

Thankfully, there are now so many gadgets to make your next business trip stress-free.

Read on to see our picks of the top business travel gadgets:

Cabin Friendly Adventure bag
€20.00

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The Cabin Friendly Adventure bag has tonnes of travel friendly features. It’s perfect for a short business trip and it easily folds away when not in use.

With a clip-on shoulder strap and an outside zip pocket, this cabin bag is a must have on any business travellers list.

Aqua Pure Traveller Water Filter Bottle
€45.00

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This high-performance water purification system provides you with access to safe drinking water wherever you may be.

Simply fill the bottle and you can safely drink the water immediately!

Dry iPad
€15.00

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Access your emails and keep on top of your work wherever you may be with the Dry iPad. Offering 100% waterproof protection, this clear pouch assures a seamless response to any touch.

The integrated earphone jack allows you to listen to music and watch your favourite films during your down time.

USB Adaptor
€24.00

Top 5 travel gadgets 2019 universal adaptor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Lifesystems Universal Travel Adaptor is for the worldwide business travellers. The plug adaptor system allows you to connect devices to local mains sockets in more than 150 countries.

So, whether you need to connect your phone or your laptop, the Universal Travel Adaptor can charge your electronics when connected to nearly any power supply.

Mobile Power Bank
€27.00

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You need not worry about your phone battery running low during an important business call with the Mobile Power Bank.

This back-up power source is an easy way to charge your essentials when you’re out and about, making it one of the top business travel gadgets on our list.

We hope you enjoyed our top business travel gadgets blog!

For more travel related advice, be sure to check out our other blog posts or get in contact with your local TMB clinic.

Top Travel Gadgets 2019

Top Travel Gadgets 2019

top 5 travel gadgets 2019Preparing to go on your holidays isn’t always the easiest feat. Passports? Check. Boarding Passes? Check. Stressing about having everything until you eventually get off your flight? Check.

After all the hustle and bustle of getting to your destination, it’s important that you make your time away a complete breeze! Luckily enough, there are plenty of top travel gadgets to help make your travelling life that bit easier.

These are the top travel gadgets 2019 – all of which can be found on Travelshop.ie!

USB Universal Adaptor
€24.00

Top 5 travel gadgets 2019 universal adaptor
The Lifesystems Universal Travel Adaptor is for the worldwide travellers amongst you. This Universal Travel Adapter is fitted with a powerful USB port which will charge devices at 1 amp, as opposed to the more common 0.5 amps. It also has a patented plug adaptor system enabling you to connect two pin or three pin devices to local mains sockets in more than 150 countries.

Go Travel Dry Reader
€11.00

top 5 travel gadgets 2019 dry reader

This 100% waterproof case will protect your beloved e-reader from water, sand and dirt.

Able to fit iPad mini’s and all Kindle models – the Go Travel Dry Reader will ensure to keep your e-reader safe, no matter where you decide to read!

Cable padlock
€13.99

top 5 travel gadgets 2019 cable padlock

There’ll be no need to worry about the safety of your belongings with the cable padlock.

The cable lock has a 90cm retractable steel shackle and hard to crack, four-digit number combination. The shackle is contained in a durable ABS plastic casing.

Share Sounds earphones
€9.00

top 5 travel gadgets 2019 splitter
Want to watch or listen to something with a friend but don’t have a splitter handy? Worry not!

The share sounds earphones make their way onto the list of the top travel gadgets 2019 as, put simply, they are a quality pair of earphones! The integrated splitter ensures you and your friend can listen together on your travels.

USB Shaver
€15.00

top 5 travel gadgets 2019 shaver

This pocket-sized travel shaver makes life easier for any traveller who likes to take care of themselves when travelling but doesn’t fancy packing their whole shaving set!

The shaver is supplied with a spare micro foil guard ensuring its high performance is maintained for an extended period of time before seeking a replacement.

We hope you enjoyed our Top Travel Gadgets 2019 blog. For more travel related advice, be sure to check out our other blog posts.

Is travel good for your health?

Is travel good for your health?

You’ve just arrived home from your trip abroad, the feeling of calm and relaxation is, for lack of a better word – fantastic. Don’t you just wish you could bottle it up and use it whenever needed?
Well, there’s a reason for that post-travel tenderness and it’s not just because of the amount of naps you indulged in. Which makes us wonder, is travel good for your health?

We’re delighted to disclose that it’s been proven that travelling can affect both your physical and mental health in a positive way.
Read on to see Tropical Medical Bureau’s reasons as to why travel is good for your health.

Boost creativity

Is travel good for your health

Exploring the meandering streets of Santorini or the stunning ski slopes of Whistler will have your brain in a tizzy of inspiration.
Whether you’re a creative at heart or you’ve simply always been able to appreciate stunning sites – travel has been proven to have the power to boost your creativity.

Make social connections

Is travel good for your health

Being brave enough to experience a new destination comes hand in hand with finding the courage to, and perhaps needing to, step out of your comfort zone and make new connections.
Whether these connections be fellow travellers or trustworthy locals, putting yourself out there and meeting new people is known to have a positive impact on your mental health, mainly your confidence.

Experience alternative lifestyles and cultures

Is travel good for your health culture

Submerging yourself in the culture of another country is not easy, but it’s worth it. Steering yourself away from your usual Sunday roast does in fact come with some positives!
By embracing the food, the lifestyle and the norms of a certain area, you’ll learn to understand and acknowledge the history. This can enrich your mind in some pretty special ways.

You’ll get moving

Is travel good for your health

You won’t have the luxury of knowing the bus route or having the local taxi man on speed dial. When travelling abroad, you’ll be constantly on the go. Whether that be by foot or by bike, you’ll find yourself moving much more than you would at home – need we explain why this is a positive for your health?

Challenge your brain

Is travel good for your health decision

Decisions are something you’re bound to delve into making during your time away. Whether it be what to eat for breakfast or what island to visit next – your brain will consistently be challenged in more ways than one.
Independence and decision making will come in abundance during your time travelling, your brain will constantly be on the go.

We hope you enjoyed our ‘Is travel good for your health?’ blog.
For more travel related advice, be sure to check out our other blog posts.

How to travel on a budget – The 2019 guide

How to travel on a budget – The 2019 guide

how to travel on a budget

Many people feel as if they need to pick between travelling and keeping their bank account in order, when in fact, you can do both!
You see, it’s not necessary to spend a lot to experience a lot and we’re here to prove it.
Read on to see our top tips on how to travel on a budget – the 2019 guide.

Consider alternative destinations

how to travel on a budget

Many want to experience the beaches of Bali or the sunset of Bora Bora. But, what if we told you that the sand is just as sandy and the sunset is just as magnificent in other, cheaper destinations?
One of the first things to consider when travelling on a budget is your destination. Less expensive doesn’t necessarily mean less beautiful – do your research!

Plan around off-peak times

how to travel on a budget

Look into the most popular times to visit your destination, and then plan to travel just before or after these dates. This is what’s called shoulder season; you’ll still make amazing memories but you won’t have to break the bank to make them.

Treasure experiences, save the expenses

how to travel on a budget

Take advantage of all of the free attractions in your destination. Be it museums, historic sites or a simple beach walk – you don’t need to splash the cash to create experiences.
Be sure to look online for any free events ongoing during your stay; they’re a great way to truly embrace your destinations culture and get chatting to locals!

Public transport is your friend

how to travel on a budget

Would you hail a taxi every day just to get around your local town? Then it’s smart not to get into the habit when you’re away! When travelling on a budget, it’s important to do as the locals do and grab a bus, train, walk or cycle.

Eat in, not out

how to travel on a budget

Head to the local market and pick up some inexpensive local, and authentic, delicacies. By doing this, you’ll spend a percentage of what you would spend in any of the tourist ridden restaurants, and you’ll be able to experience a snippet of the areas true food culture.

Locals know best

how to travel on a budget

Get chatting to the individuals who know your chosen destination inside out – the locals!
Whether you’re looking to treat yourself to an authentic meal in a local restaurant or you want to explore some areas off the beaten track – the locals will be able to point you in the right, and less expensive, direction.

We hope you enjoyed our blog on how to travel on a budget!
For more travel related advice, be sure to check out our blog.

5 ways to save water when travelling

5 ways to save water when travelling

ways to save water when travelling

Water is one of the world’s most important natural resources yet saving water when travelling isn’t always made a priority.

That’s why, this World Water Day 2019, we’re sharing some top ways to save water when travelling so that the next time you take a trip, you’ll be a savvy water saver.

Shower don’t bathe

ways to save water when travelling

It’s unfortunate but true, the bath in hotel rooms really does look more inviting than the one you have at home. But, don’t let it tempt you!

A trip to the bath uses a lot more water than showering. Think about it – water is used to fill the tub as well as to rinse off any excess soap once you’re done. Put simply, shower don’t bathe.

Use hand sanitiser

ways to save water when travelling

Not only does hand sanitiser rid germs and save you from looking for water or soap when you’re on the go, it also helps save water!

So, the next time you’re picking up some last-minute toiletries, opt for some hand sanitiser and feel proud that you’re doing your bit to save water.

Turn off taps properly

ways_to_save_water_when_travelling2

Have you ever heard the faint sound of drops of water coming from a tap? Well, those drops can really add up. Always remember to turn the tap off properly once you’re finished using it.

Carry wet wipes

ways to save water when travelling

If you don’t know the power of wet wipes, we’re more than happy to introduce you!
They’ll keep you clean in destinations or accommodations where there’s limited access to water – and even places where there’s not.

Tonnes of sizes and packages are available so you can wipe yourself down during a trip instead of putting water to waste.

Re-wear your clothes

ways to save water when travelling

One of the most overlooked ways to save water when travelling? Re-wearing your clothes! That’s right, wearing your clothes more than once is a step in the right direction to saving water.
Also, consider investing in some durable clothing which won’t need to be washed as much!

We hope you enjoyed our blog post on our top 5 ways to save water when travelling! For more travel related advice, be sure to check out our blog.

What to do if your luggage is lost abroad

What to do if your luggage is lost abroad

what to do if you lost your luggage abroad

It’s every traveller’s worst nightmare. You’ve been planning this trip for months, you’ve stocked up on fresh toiletries and even some new socks. You’ve arrived at your destination and you’re standing at the carousel for what feels like forever.

The empty carousel passes you by one last time and you come to realise – you’ve lost your luggage abroad.
Suddenly, your dream holiday has gone down the drain and you can’t help but be bothered by the thought of wearing your travelling clothes repeatedly for the next ten days.

But worry not, here’s what to do if your luggage is lost abroad:

Don’t panic

lost luggage

Despite how much you’ll want to, going straight into panic mode won’t bring your luggage back. With that said, you’ll be delighted to know that there is a pretty high chance that your luggage has simply been misplaced. The vast majority of lost baggage thankfully turns up within a few days.

According to the SITA 2017 Baggage Report, for every thousand passengers, 6.94 bags were lost as a result of mishandling in 2017. At a rate of 6.94 bags per 1000 passengers, that’s just a 0.7% chance your luggage is actually lost!

Visit the baggage claim office

lost luggage

Head over to the airport’s baggage claim office and file a report of your lost luggage.

Filing a report lets the airline know about your missing bag, it also allows you to create a paper trail if you’d like to receive a reimbursement for the items you had to purchase as a result of your missing bag – which presumably you’ll want to do!

Before leaving, make sure to get a copy of the report and a follow-up number that you can contact.

Create a list of your items

lost luggage

If your luggage turns out to be lost, some airlines may require you to produce receipts to prove the value of the items that you had in your lost luggage.

Of course, this seems like a daunting task. So to begin, simply create a list of the items that were in your suitcase whilst it’s still fresh in your mind.

Keep in contact with the airline

lost luggage

Take the reins of the situation and give the airline a follow-up call.
Depending on the airline, if your bag is truly lost, they must compensate you for it and your lost items – so make sure to ask, it’s worth a try!

We hope you find these tips for what to do if your luggage is lost abroad useful. For more travel related advice be sure to check out our blog.

How to Overcome Fear of Flying

How to overcome fear of flying

How to overcome fear of flying

You dream of listening to the gentle lulling of the waves on a Thai beach or blowing that bonus on Fifth Avenue in New York. Maybe you’ve always wanted to climb Mt Kilimanjaro or to discover a whole new world under the sea at the Great Barrier Reef. But one thing is holding you back – a fear of flying. This phobia affects thousands of Irish passengers each year and accounts for many sweaty palms, clenched fists and profuse sweating at the boarding gates. Want to know how to overcome fear of flying? Our expert tells all…

Face your fear

Don’t let your fear of flying limit the holidays you take or adventures you have. Yes, it may be a scary thought but it’s important not to let this hold you back from what you want to do. The longer you avoid flying the more daunting the prospect will become. Refusing to fly can affect your personal relationships and even career so be determined not to let it get the better of you. There are lots of things you can do to figure out how to overcome fear of flying. It’s down to each individual to find out what works for them.  Start preparing early, there are tips you can use both before you take off and while in the air.

Know the facts

Do some research to understand exactly what happens on a plane. This will help you to account for any strange noises or turbulence which would otherwise cause you to panic. You may be fed up of hearing that you’re more likely to be injured in a car or on a bike but this is true! Flying is actually the safest mode of transport with a minuscule number of accidents compared to driving.

Take deep breaths

Never underestimate the power of deep breathing. This is the only automatic function of the body that you have control over. It’s a really useful way to reduce anxiety and can help the body to calm down quickly. If you’re in a real state and find yourself hyperventilating, breathe into the sick bag found in front of your seat.

Distract yourself mid-flight

Do what you can to turn the flight experience into something to be enjoyed. How often is it that you get time to yourself to kick back with a good book or watch the latest blockbuster? Bring a book and a tablet with you or avail of the inflight entertainment.How to overcome fear of flying

It’s amazing how quickly the time will pass if you’re focused on something else.

Think about where you’re going

Remember the reason you’re on the plane. This is a great way to overcome fear of flying. Instead of dwelling on morbid thoughts, consider how much fun you’re going to have when you arrive at your destination. Distract yourself with a guidebook or photo of where you’re jetting off to. With a physical image in hand, your mind is much less likely to wander.

Be careful with drinks

Stay away caffeinated drinks as these can result in a hyper state of mind and exacerbate your anxiety. Likewise, dehydration can intensify your fear, as well as jet lag, and cause you to feel even more uncomfortable. Drink plenty of water throughout the flight and move around the cabin to normalise the situation. Alcohol and sleeping tablets won’t do anything to combat your fear in the long run so these are also best avoided.

Follow our top tips and feel your worries slowly float away. Remember that fear of flying is a very common phobia and you are not alone in your anxiety on flight. Try to think rationally about the situation and focus on other things, like where you’re headed or inflight entertainment, to make the journey go by as quickly as possible. You’ll thank yourself when you have an incredible time wherever you land.

As you take a practical approach to find out how to overcome fear of flying in your own individual circumstance, remember that for most people fear of flying reduces with experience. The good news is that generally speaking the more you fly, the easier it gets.

TMB are here to help, get more travel health advice here. 

Tips for travelling with food allergies

Tips for travelling with food allergies

Tips for travelling with food allergies

Travelling with food allergies can sometimes feel daunting, but it is possible to enjoy a lifetime of travel once you follow some simple steps. By planning ahead and taking precautions, you can be allergy aware and safe wherever you go. Here are some straightforward tips for travelling with food allergies.

Choose the right accommodation

Take some time to research your trip so you can enjoy your journey without constantly worrying about your allergies. Choose your accommodation wisely by calling ahead to learn about their food allergy policies. Whether you decided to stay in a hotel, hostel, or apartments try to book accommodation with a kitchen, and find out where local groceries can be purchased. This way you won’t have to worry about eating out all the time.

Get travel insurance

You should have travel insurance at the top of your list. Travel insurance is not only helpful for medical care in other countries but also helps if anything unexpected happens and you need to cancel or change your flights.

Carry a first aid kit

Pack a first aid kit with all your medications, including extra EpiPen and your Food Allergy Action Plan. This consists of recommended treatment in case of an allergic reaction, is signed by your GP and includes emergency contact information.  Don ’t pack away your first aid kit in your checked luggage, it should always be easily accessible.Tips for travelling with food allergies

Food allergy apps

There are dozens of free apps to help people with food allergies and food sensitivities. A useful app to download is smart-ICE (In Case of Emergency). With this app, you can keep your emergency contacts, doctor’s information, medical information, and any prescription information or medicines you’re taking all on your phone. This is a great app to have in case of an emergency.

Ensure a safe plane ride

If you have serious reactions to any common allergens, it is imperative you verify that your flight will be safe. For example, if you have a peanut allergy, call the airline before booking and ask what their allergy policies are. Every airline is different and some are more helpful than others. Most need the notice to make accommodations. Even after you have discussed your allergies with the airline always tell the flight attendant about your allergies before boarding the plane.  Make sure you feel 100% safe and before you board the plane.

Learn the local language

Try to learn as much of the local language as possible, especially the terms associated with allergies. This way you can recognize what your allergens are called, and explain yourself if you are having a reaction and need help. Hellolingo.com is a free language sharing site and Duolingo is a great language learning app that can help you pick up the local language easily.

Tips for travelling with food allergies 2

Find out where to eat ahead of time

There are several things you can to do while travelling to make eating easier and safe. Do some research ahead of time to see what dining options are available at the destination you are visiting. Biteappy is a worldwide directory of allergy-friendly restaurants locally or abroad. Search for allergy-friendly restaurants to make eating out an easy and enjoyable experience.

Travel Health

We hope that you find these tips for travelling with food allergies useful while you travel abroad. For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB travel health clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals.

Best islands in Thailand for backpackers

Best Islands in Thailand for Backpackers 1Best islands in Thailand for backpackers

Backpacking through Thailand is a real treat for Irish students. After a busy college year, students love to jet off and explore the Thai islands and find a sense of freedom and some well-deserved fun in the sunWhether you want to see the fascinating world of South East Asia, swim in the crystal-clear waters, enjoy the picturesque mountain views or experience the most incredible nightlife – these islands have it all! With so much to see and do it’s easy to see why young visitors go backpacking in Thailand every year. However, with countless islands to choose from, planning a trip can be difficult. To help students make the most of their island hopping experience, here is a rundown of what our customers have voted the best islands in Thailand for backpackers.

Best Islands in Thailand for Backpackers 2

Ko Samui

Ko Samui is one of the favourite destinations in Thailand among students and is easily accessible with its own airport. This island offers students magnificent white sandy beaches, wonderful restaurants and a sparkling nightlife to match. Visit Chanweng beach and feel alive with the hustle and bustle of this vibrant beach surrounded by bars, restaurants, and a fantastic selection of shops. Ko Samui is known for its laid-back charm but also offers an exciting nightlife that will definitely impress you! This is a great point at which to kick off your backpacking adventure.

Ko Pha-Ngan

Only a short ferry ride from Ko Samui is Ko Pha-Ngan, another hotspot for students and certainly one of the best islands in Thailand for backpackers. Situated in South-East Thailand, this island is home to the most stunning bays and luscious rainforest. Explore the island’s diverse flora and fauna, swim in clearest waters and taste delightful local specialities for an experience of a lifetime!

Ko Pha-Ngan is renowned for its monthly Full Moon Party. This night-long party takes place on a stretch of beach each month during the full moon. Imagine a beach packed with people from all over the world, fire dancers, dance stages, drink bucket stands and live DJs – there is nothing quite like it!

Best Islands in Thailand for backpackers 3

Ko Chang

Ko Chang, Thailand’s second largest island, is definitely high on the list of best islands in Thailand for backpackers. This island offers students a chance to revitalise and renew their energy levels. It is by far the most scenic island with beautiful beaches and renowned views. Relatively undeveloped, the island is perfect for energetic treks and exploring its untouched dense forests. The island’s beaches have clear calm seas, great for swimming and snorkelling. This is an idyllic Island for any young adventurer!

Koh Tao – Best islands in Thailand for backpackers

Koh Tao is one of Thailand’s smaller islands but that doesn’t mean that it is without plenty of fun activities for students to enjoy. The island’s stunning natural landscapes offer the perfect environment for students to relax, sight-see and soak up the sunshine.

Spend your days practicing yoga on a golden beach for a unique experience that you won’t easily forget. This island offers irresistible charm – not to mention an excellent nightlife – including the occasional full-moon party.

Travel health

TMB want to help you stay safe and healthy while abroad! Make sure you are fully prepared and protected against possible health risks by booking a consultation with one of our medical professionals.

Can you travel abroad with your pet?

Can you travel abroad with your pet?

Can you travel abroad with your pet.

Are you going away to an exotic destination this Christmas, visiting family abroad, or returning home? Though this can be exciting, we all know the feeling of leaving your beloved pet behind. Finding someone you trust to take care of your pet while you are away can be difficult. However, you don’t have to leave them behind. Here’s how you can travel abroad with your pet.

Get your pet passport

Yes, you heard us right. Pets require passports in order to fly between countries!travel abroad with your pet.

Proper documentation is always needed when travelling with your pet, so be sure to research the requirements of the Regional Veterinary Office of the destination of your travels prior to departing. This includes proof of vaccination and microchipping! Rules for travel vary depending on location, so it is best to have everything organised in advance!

Choose your accommodation wisely

Before embarking on your travels, take some time to do your research. If you are planning on staying in hotels/hostels/ airbnb’s, make sure they are pet-friendly. Travelling with your pet 2

There is nothing worse than being turned away at check-in, let alone losing your deposit! If you plan to stay with family or friends, make sure they are happy for your pet to join! It is polite to give people a heads up. You don’t want to be that person who shows up with a pet unannounced!

Make a holiday itinerary

If you are planning to travel with your pet, make sure it is a holiday for both of you! There are plenty of pet-friendly activities for you to do together. Research your destination and see if there is a nearby park or other pet-friendly locations that you and your pet can visit together.

Can you travel abroad with your pet? The answer is YES! If you and your pet are heading off an exotic destination, we strongly advise that you book an appointment at your local TMB clinic and get all of the recommended vaccinations.  

How to do a digital detox while on holidays

How to do a digital detox while on holidays

Phone detox

 

Holidays are a time for relaxation and reflection. However, with smartphones today, getting some time to yourself can be more challenging than you think. This is why doing a digital detox while on holidays is perfect. With our five top tips, we want to help you to cut down on your smartphone usage to ensure you make the most of your getaway!

  1. Choose the right destination

Choosing the right destination for your holiday is not only important, but it is key to the success of your digital detox. A city with lots to offer will keep you on your feet and distracted. For example, Japan is an ideal holiday destination!Japan

In Japan, there is more history and culture available to you than you could ever imagine! In order to take full advantage of this, you need to give Japan 100% of your attention. If you choose a destination that will leave you bored at times, you will have a stronger temptation to pass the time on your smartphone. In Japan, you won’t even have a spare moment to break your digital detox!

  1. Bring a Camera

One of the easiest ways to “accidentally” check your phone is when you choose to use it as a camera! One moment you are taking a picture, the next you are checking your emails and social media. Do yourself a favour, and bring a good camera on your next holiday! Not only will it take better photos, but it will also allow you to stick to your digital detox and stay in the moment!

  1. Get a map – a digital detox

This is one of the easiest things you can do to avoid screen time. We all remember a time before GPS, it will be like taking a trip to the past!Map

Maps are readily available to you while on holidays. If you are staying at a hotel, ask the front desk! As well, any tourist office would be happy to help you out. Guiding yourself through a city by map will eliminate the need to use your smartphone for directions.

  1. Swap your smartphone for a fuss-free phone

Surprisingly, a cellphone without smartphone capabilities is quite inexpensive today. Instead of bringing your smartphone on holiday with you, swap it out for a fuss-free cellphone. If your main concern with doing a digital detox is that it will be difficult for people to get in touch with you in case of emergency, then this is a viable option for you! Simply pop out your SIM card, and insert it into your fuss-free phone. Family and friends will be able to call you and you won’t have access to social media! Talk about a win-win situation!

  1. Allocate time for your smartphone

Saying that you won’t use your smartphone is an unrealistic goal for many people. It is our access to the world! Many of us use our smartphones not only for communication but for news and information! phone

Cutting yourself off from all of this can be very difficult. This is why we propose you set a time frame (or two) during which you are allowed to use your smartphone for all the features it offers! We suggest in the morning before breakfast and before you go to bed! With allocated smartphone times, you are less likely to crave your phone during the day.

We hope you found this blog on how to do a digital detox while on holidays helpful. If you are heading off to an exotic adventure, we strongly advise that you book an appointment at your local TMB clinic and get all of the recommended vaccinations.  

The Different Types of Travellers – What Kind Are You?

The Different Types of Travellers – What Kind Are You?

the different types of travellers

Every traveller has their own vibe when it comes to travelling. Sometimes you are rolling with the punches, exploring every aspect of a city- and sometimes you just want to take it easy and relax on a beach. Luckily, the world is a vast playground that can cater to anything you feel like doing. Keeping the different types of travellers in mind, we’re here to tell you exactly where you should go for your next holiday destination.

Relaxer

Occasionally,  our lives can become overwhelming… but that is why we have holiday time! If you are the kind of traveller who needs to escape their daily routine and relax on a beach, Cuba is the place to go!

the different types of travellers

Picture this- light blue waters, white sand beaches, palm trees and a piña colada. If that isn’t the recipe for a perfect holiday, I don’t know what is! Cuba is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world – our favourite is Playa Los Flamencos. Covering over 22 km of coastline, this beach offers you beautiful views and more! In between lounging on the beach, we recommend you go for a snorkel to see the country’s famous starfish!

History Lover

If you are the kind of person who loves to learn about history, Israel is the place for you! Take a trip to the city of Jerusalem, and you won’t be able to move without stepping on some history!

the different types of travellers

Acting as a holy site to Judaism, Christianity and Islam, the city offers travellers of all backgrounds an opportunity to learn about the past. Don’t believe us? Here are our fast 5 facts about Jerusalem.

  1. There are more than 50 Christian churches, 33 Muslim Mosques, and 300 Jewish synagogues in the city.
  2. The Israel Museum is home to the Dead Sea Scrolls- some of the oldest Biblical manuscripts ever found.
  3. Jerusalem has more than 2000 active archaeological sites.
  4. There are more than 60 museums in the city.
  5. Some of the olive trees in the city are more than 800 years old.

The Party Goer – types of traveller

If you are the kind of traveller who is looking to let loose and be where the party is, Thailand is definitely the place for you. Each day offers you a new experience, and the country’s natural beauty is an added bonus! Of all the parties you will find here, attending a full moon party is an absolute must!

the different types of travellersA full moon party is a signature party in Thailand that takes place on a beach, and goes on all night to celebrate… you guessed it! A full moon! Thailand boasts a vast range of full moon parties to choose from, such as the ones in Koh Pha Ngan! Visitors can expect to see fireworks,  listen to a wide spectrum of music and meet new people from across the world.  It truly is a party-goers paradise!

Adventurer

If you are travelling in search of adventure, Canada is our choice for you! In British Columbia, you can seek out enough thrill for a lifetime. This beautiful Canadian province is known for its breathtaking views,  but little do people know, it can offer you adventure in any way you can think of!

the different types of travellers

Here are some of our favourite activities offered in British Colombia.

  1. Snow Ski on Whistler Mountain
  2. Bungee Jump above the glacial-fed Cheakamus River
  3. Hike the Berg Lake Trail
  4. Go White Water Rafting on the Chilliwack River
  5. Go horseback riding through the Rocky Mountains

Budget Conscious

If you plan to travel on a budget, we’re here to help! Our favourite budget-friendly holiday spot is Cancun, Mexico. Known for its beautiful beaches and all-inclusive resorts, you are sure to get a good deal on your holiday.  As always, a budget-friendly holiday needs to be flexible with dates. The key to saving money is travelling during the off-season, especially in Mexico! Flights become far less expensive, and tourist fee-hikes on accommodation disappear.

the different types of travellersIf you are savvy enough, you will surely s a great deal for an all-inclusive holiday of your dreams! The easiest way to do this is to book as far in advance as possible. If you have prospective dates in mind, start booking! The closer to your holiday you get, the more expensive!

Travel health

For travel health tips and advice call into your local TMB travel health clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals. Our experts will offer you travel advice and guide you through the health and safety requirements for your trip.

5 shocking myths about the flu

5 shocking myths about the flu

Flu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are many misconceptions about the flu and the flu vaccine. It can be difficult for people to sort out a fact from a rumour when it involves this virus. It is our goal to help keep you informed about the flu. Here are 5 shocking myths about the flu so you know how to protect yourself from the virus.

Myth 1. The flu is the same as a cold

It may seem obvious to some but catching the flu is not the same catching a cold. The flu and the common cold are both respiratory illnesses, but they are caused by different viruses. The flu usually comes on suddenly. The symptoms of flu can include fever or feeling feverish/chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue (tiredness). In general, Cold symptoms are usually milder than the symptoms of the flu. People with colds are more likely to have a runny or stuffy nose. The flu can cause mild to severe illness. It is more dangerous than a cold as at times it can lead to death.

Myth 2. If you have the flu you can’t infect someone just by standing next to them

It is evitable that you will stand in close proximity to someone when at work, college or in a public space. Unfortunately, if you are sick, that means you have probably already infected them. The flu is spread by virus-laden droplets. These are drops of spit or other bodily fluids that spray into the air when you sneeze and cough. These droplets can extend out from you at a distance of six feet. Even just breathing on someone a few feet from you can infect them.

ctaching the fluIf you have the flu everything you touch also gets covered in the virus. The virus can survive for up to 48 hours on a hard, nonporous surface such as a door handle.

Myth 3. You never get the flu, so you won’t this year

If you have not had the flu before, then lucky you! However, just because you have not gotten sick in the past does not mean you are somehow immune to the flu. Not catching the flu is usually down to two things. One is that you haven’t come into contact with anyone who has the virus. The second reason is that you have always gotten the flu vaccination to prevent catching the flu.

If enough people get vaccinated against a virus, they can not then spread the virus to others. It is a process called herd immunity and helps protect the most vulnerable people in the population, including infants and young children, older adults and people who have weak immune systems from a medical condition or medication.

Myth 4. You got the flu vaccination last year, so you don’t need it again this year

To protect yourself and others from the flu, you must get the flu vaccination every year. Unlike some other immunizations, the flu vaccination becomes less effective over time.unwell

The flu vaccination formulation also changes each year to protect against specific viruses that are expected to be prominent that year. This is another reason why it is important to get the flu vaccination every year.

Myth 5. You are healthy, so you won’t get the flu

Looking after your health is always beneficial for you. However, anyone can get sick with the flu, even extremely healthy people. The flu can affect you just as easily as it can affect someone who does not eat well or exercise regularly. It is true that a good diet and exercise regime will help keep you to stay healthy and strong, but that is not going to prevent you from getting sick if you are exposed to the flu virus. The only thing that will help prevent you from catching the flu is getting the flu vaccination.

We hope you found our 5 shocking myths about the flu helpful. To protect yourself and others from catching the flu we strongly advise that you book an appointment at your local TMB clinic for the flu vaccination. 

5 Best rainy season holiday destinations

5 best destinations during the rainy seasonTravelling to a country during the rainy season can sound cold and wet, but for some destinations this is actually the best time to go. The rain tends to bring lush landscapes and fewer crowds, which means lower-priced accommodations and flights when these destinations are their most beautiful. But not all rainy seasons are created equal, so here’s our list of the 5 best destinations during the rainy season.

Peru (December- March)

The best part about Peru’s rainy season is that it’s generally the warmest part of the year, with average temperatures around 24℃ as opposed to the dryer months where temperatures are around 17℃. But the rain can bring obstacles if you are set on trekking around the Andes, and it’s best to avoid hiking since trails can be muddy and dangerous.

5 best destinations during the rainy seasonInstead, doing some of the iconic sightseeing in Machu Picchu and Cusco is better and less crowded.

Cayman Islands (May-October)

A brief afternoon shower is often welcomed in the heat of the summer in the Cayman Islands. The country has a very mild rainy season; it doesn’t rain every day, but when it does the storms tend to pass very quickly and offer a refreshing break from the summer heat. Visiting during this time of year also gives you the advantage of being in the beautiful islands off of peak season, so you will find that beaches will be less crowded and accommodations more affordable.

Mexico (May-October) –  rainy season holiday

Even with some rain, there are still plenty of things to do in Mexico during this season. Mexico has a rich and diverse history which is seen best while visiting some of their museums and historical buildings.

5 best destinations during the rainy seasonBut if museums aren’t your thing, you can stay dry while sampling some of the country’s most famous exports at a Mexican tequila or mezcal tasting.

Costa Rica (May-November)

Costa Rica is unarguably most beautiful when the rainforests are lush and vibrant, and the rainy season is the perfect time of year to see the trees at their greenest. Along with making the trees so green, the rain can also bring more bugs to the tropics. Make sure to bring extra bug repellent because the mosquitos are the worst during the rainy season. Even though the bugs may be heavier, the rainy season tends to be the least busy time of year, meaning that the beautiful sights will be less crowded with other visitors.

Dominican Republic (May-November)

A little rain never gets in the way of a good time in the Dominican Republic. Even during the rainy season, many storms come in short bursts and leave clear sunny skies once they are done.5 best destinations during the rainy season

The small drizzles of the rainy season give the perfect excuse to get in the water and enjoy some world class scuba diving.

Travel Health

If you are thinking of travelling during the rainy season we have a range of travel health services available. For more information contact TMB.

5 of the World’s Best Backpacking Destinations

Best backpacking destinations 1Backpacking is easily one of the best ways to travel the world on a budget. And without letting baggage and fears get in your way of getting to know a new location, it can be one of the most rewarding experiences of a lifetime. But with so many places to see and choose from, it can be a bit overwhelming when deciding where you want to take your backpack next, so here are six of the world’s best backpacking destinations to help you decide.

Ecuador

Ecuador may not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of backpacking destinations, but this small South American country has a lot more to offer than many realize. Ecuador’s large variety of landscapes and attractions is what makes it one of the world’s best backpacking destinations.

Best backpacking destinationsThe nation’s capital, Quito, has a convenient public transportation system. This system makes it easy to stay outside of the city centre while still being able to explore all parts of the capital. After checking out the city, explore the outdoors on the Quilotoa loop hike or by visiting the legendary Galapagos islands; both locations offer some of the most unique sites in the country.

Nicaragua

Nicaragua is an extreme adventurer’s paradise. Offering mountain biking, kayaking and volcano boarding, backpacking in this Central American country is sure to awaken your more adventurous side.Best backpacking destinations 1

One of the most popular activities to try is volcano boarding. If you want to give it a try then there are many locations to choose from but the most popular is Cerro Negro. This is not too far from the city of Leon. However, the surf doesn’t end on the volcano, Nicaragua has some of the best beaches in the world to hit the waves on, check out Playa Madera to experience some the best surf that the country has to offer. To top it all off, Nicaragua is one of the most inexpensive places to travel in all of Central America making it one of the world’s best backpacking destinations.

Morocco

To enjoy a “world away” feeling without wondering too far from Europe, Morocco is the ideal destination. One of the most popular activities to take part in during your visit to Morocco is riding a camel through the Sahara, and it’s fairly easy to arrange a tour from either M’Hamid or Merzouga.Best backpacking destinations 2

If you would prefer to enjoy the sand closer to a beach, there is plenty of world-class surfing to be done up and down Morocco’s Atlantic coast. To diversify your trip, even more, don’t forget to check out a medina (old town). Fez is home to the largest one in the world, but every city in the country has one.

Sri Lanka – Best backpacking destinations!

Sri Lanka will win you over with its incredible array of temples, ruins, beaches and mountains. If you choose to take advantage of the public transport system, eat at local cafes and stay in inexpensive accommodations, the island can easily be explored on a tight budget.Best backpacking destinations 3 While there are many breath-taking sights to see, we recommend planning ahead and choosing just a few to check out before you leave in order to avoid spending all of your money on pricey tourist sites.

Bolivia

Bolivia is the cheapest country in South America for a backpacking adventure. The landlocked country has an incredibly varied landscape; the north and east consisting mostly of tropical lowlands and the south and west are highly mountainous, which means there is a wide variety of things to do and see.

Best backpacking destinations 4With a range of activities from touring the salt flats to shopping at unique markets, Bolivia is sure to have something that will catch your eye.

Travel Health

We hope you enjoyed our choice of  5 of the World’s Best Backpacking Destinations. Thinking of your next adventure? Visit us at one of our TMB clinics and speak to a qualified professional about the recommended vaccinations for your adventure.

 

The best cities for foodies

Best cities for foodie.JPG 2One of the most exciting and rewarding aspects of travelling is trying new food in the places you go.  In fact, for some, food is so essential they plan their whole holiday around going to the best places to eat. For those people and those who aspire to be more like them, here’s our list of the best cities for foodies to visit.

Bangkok – Thailand

See, hear, smell, touch, taste—Bangkok is a city that hits every sense. Sounds of heavy traffic and the smells of fresh Thai street food dominate the atmosphere in this Asian metropolis. Give your wallet a break and enjoy one of their famous Thai curries for just 60 to 90 baht (about €1.50 to €2.00). But your options aren’t just limited to curry, Bangkok is known for their endless options of exotic street foods—try everything from shrimp and noodles to mango sticky rice.

Best cities for foodie

While Bangkok has legendary Thai street food, we always recommend using caution when purchasing food from street vendors. Use your best judgement to find one that looks sanitary, these are typically the ones with the longest lines and from vendors that specialize in one type of food.

Hanoi – Vietnam

Hanoi, Vietnam is certainly one of the best cities for foodies to visit! Enjoy the endless array of classic Vietnamese food such as pho bo (beef noodle soup), gỏi cuốn (spring rolls) and bahn mi (baguette sandwich). Each dish is characterized by a distinct balance of salty, sweet and savoury flavours that work in ways a western food pallet may not expect. The staple item for any Vietnamese dish is rice, a perfect ingredient to showcase this balance. Almost every dish in Vietnamese centres around the grain: it is used to make the noodles in pho, the paper in spring rolls and also shines on its own in a traditional xoi xeo (sticky rice) dish.

Mumbai – India – The best cities for foodies

Mumbai is known as one of the most diverse cities in India, so it’s no surprise that in this one city you are able to sample staple dishes that originate from all over the subcontinent. With hawkers on every corner vying for your business, you’ll have your pick of the best food at low prices at one of the best food cities in the world.

Best cities for foodie.JPG 3

Even with the vast amount of street vendors, we caution against eating meat from the street, unless you are getting it from a place that is reputable and very busy. Although you may not even be tempted to eat meat since Indian cuisine is famous for some of the most flavourful and unique vegetarian options: malai kofta, palak paneer, chole, and hara bhara kabab are just a few in a long list of dishes that could catch your eye in Mumbai.

Sao Paulo – Brazil

As one of the largest and most internationally diverse cities in Latin America, Sao Paulo’s reputation as one of the best food cities in the world has grown substantially in recent years. Fusing together Portuguese, Italian and Japanese flavours with traditional South American flair, the cuisine found in Sao Paulo is like none other. In this city, there is something to satisfy any craving. From pizza to sushi to barbecue, they truly have it all.

Buenos Aires – Argentina

Argentinian food in one word: grilled. In Argentina, steak is king and nowhere does it better than Buenos Aires. The heart of Argentine cuisine is asado, an array of grilled meats, this dish and the social atmosphere that surround it is regarded as a way of life for many Gauchos.  What goes better with a perfectly prepared asado than a glass of world-class red wine? Argentina is the fifth largest producer of wine in the world and their claim to fame is Malbec. With food and drink like asado and Malbec as dietary staples, it’s no surprise that Buenos Aires is one of the best food cities in the world.

Best cities for foodie 4

To balance out the decadence of asado and Malbec, don’t forget to try out a more casual, but still iconic dish, empanadas. From sweet to savoury, and everything in between empanadas is the go-to staple snack to round out an Argentine diet.  You won’t have to look far for this dish either as it can be found on nearly every corner in Buenos Aires.

Travel Health

To avoid illness overseas, travellers are strongly advised to book an appointment at one of the many TMB clinics and find out about the vaccinations they may require.

Tips for purchasing the right Travel Insurance Cover

Tips for purchasing the right Travel Insurance CoverSo, you’ve finally taken the leap and booked your dream holiday to a far-flung destination. Unfortunately, there is always the chance that travel disruption, strikes, sickness and other elements out of your control can end up damaging your plans and your budget. That is why a travel insurance policy is vital for any holiday. Below are Tips for purchasing the right Travel Insurance Cover to ensure that you are covered no matter what happens.

Purchase Travel Insurance as soon as you book your tripTips for Purchasing the Right Travel Insurance Cover 4

Always purchase Travel Insurance as soon as you book your trip to ensure you are covered for cancellation straight away. It can be easy to push this off until the last minute but you can run the risk of having a claim declined if you or a family member falls ill prior to taking out the Insurance.

State any health conditions prior to purchasing the policy

Tips for Purchasing the Right Travel Insurance Cover 3Read the important conditions relating to health. Most policies will require a medical declaration to determine if you have any pre-existing conditions or taking medications. If you do not state these conditions prior to purchasing the policy, you may not be protected if you have an incident related to it.

Ensure you have sufficient cover

Tips for Purchasing the Right Travel Insurance Cover 2

Check the summary of benefits to ensure you have sufficient cover. Be aware of reduced limits on Medical, Cancellation and Baggage cover with cheaper policies. Always make sure to check the Excesses on a policy so you know that if the worst happens, you won’t end up still having to pay a large excess fee to make your claim.

Additional cover options

Tips for Purchasing the Right Travel Insurance Cover

Check all additional cover options. Things like Winter sports, Excess Waiver and Travel Disruption usually incur an additional fee as they are extras on your policy.

Multitrip.com is a multi-award winning Travel Insurance brand. They are part of Blue Insurance, an Irish company that specialises in a range of insurance products, including car and home. Some of Blue’s other successful brands include GadgetInsurance.comCarHireExcess.ie and PetInsurance.ie

 

Airport tips to get you on-board stress-free

Airport Tips

Airport tips to get you on-board stress-free

You may think that you’re a travel pro but you’d be surprised by the simple details that you forget. Don’t begin your holiday purple in the face and at the point of a meltdown due to an airport fluster.
Start your trip off on the right foot with these tried and tested airport tips that will get you from the check-in desk to your seat seamlessly!

All aboard

Get your boarding pass on your phone. Everyone has experienced the hassle of printing out boarding passes, barcodes not working, pages going missing and the crazy charges of re-printing at the airport. You don’t need to have a fancy app on your phone to save your boarding pass (although they are available). Simply take a screenshot of your boarding pass which will save to your camera roll. Then you’ll always have it to hand, which is particularly useful when stocking up on duty free as in most cases you have to present it at each purchase.

Airport tips – Bag drop

There’s not much worse than the fear of heaving your bag up on the scales at the check-in desk and watching the weight clock dangerously close and then over your allowance, resulting in a increasingly aggressive group of travellers watching you rummage through your personals to find the heavier items and stuffing them into your hand luggage. Did you know that some airlines now let you check your bags in the night before your flight? Avoid the stress and long queues and start your trip free from luggage stress.

Airport Tips 4

Fast Track

If you’re travelling at a particularly busy peak travel time investing in a Fast Track pass could be the best way to go and one of the best airport tips. Skip the crazy queues of people sorting out their liquids and removing layers of clothes and fly through security (pardon the pun).

Dress well

Make life easier for yourself – dress lightly, don’t wear any belts or jewellery that will set off the alarms, wear shoes that are easy to slip on and off and avoid scarves and hats that will only have to be removed before going through the scanners. Comfortable footwear will also come in handy in the event of a panicked last minute realisation that your gate is in fact at the far side of the terminal and closes in four minutes.

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail

Don’t be one of those people trying to cram six bottles of suncream into an airport approved clear bag at the last minute. Pick up a pack of sandwich bags before you leave and have your liquids all sealed up and ready to go. Also, keep your electronics to hand as these will need to be scanned separately.

Choose wisely

As airport tips go, this is one most people forget. When approaching security, take a quick scan of the queues. Avoid the groups of students with their matching backpacks and instead head for the group of suits who are sure to be travelling pros.

Airport Tips 3Ring the alarm

Airports have flights announcements for all kinds of destinations every minute. Don’t rely on them to remind you, especially considering some parts of the airport don’t actually broadcast these alerts. Set yourself an alarm giving you plenty of time to get to your gate.

Airport tips – Wifi

Airports have some of the best Wifi around. Take advantage and get some work done while you wait or simply make your friends jealous with the standard “On a plane on the runway” pre-holiday check-in.

Businessman Sleeping in an Airplane --- Image by © Creasource/Corbis

Travel Health

We hope that you find these tips useful while you travel abroad. For travel health tips and advice call your local TMB travel health clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals. Our experts will guide you through the health requirements for your destination, telling you all you need to know about vaccinations, mosquito bite prevention and food hygiene.

Diving in the World – Top Destinations

diving

Diving in the World – Top Destinations

The ocean is so big that only 5% of it has been explored by humans. Dive into the unknown on your next holiday and see the breathtaking scenes that lie beneath the coastline. Here are the favourite destinations for the best diving in the world.

Barracuda Point – Malaysia

Barracuda point is located off the shores of the Sipadan Island. Diving in Barracuda Point will see you surrounded by many wonderful creatures of the sea. Don’t be surprised if you get caught in the middle of the shoal of barracudas that swim in circles like a tornado. Other creatures to look out for would be turtles, batfish, jacks, grey reef and whitetip sharks.

Thistlegorm – Eqypt

Here divers can explore a shipwreck dated back to WWII. The Thistlegorm was a British ship on route to deliver supplies to troops in Northern Africa before it was bombed by the Germans. Now it is one of the most famous shipwrecks for divers in the world. Diving in the worldThe cargo on board includes many different vehicles from trucks, jeeps, motorcycles and tanks. All areas of the Thistlegorm are accessible for divers and with so much to see you might have to dive down more than once.

Beqa Lagoon – Fiji

Bega Lagoon is one of the top diving spots in the world. On your dive you could spot multiple species of sharks, more than 400 species of tropical fish and stunning coral reefs that are so visible in the clear Fijian waters. You can also dive down to the wreck of an old fishing vessel called Rusi’s Pinnacle, scuttled in 2000 it stands upright on the seabed, perfect for exploring. The water is usually warm, the currents are mild and with over 50 world class dives to choose from it will suit all experience levels.

Gansbaai – South Africa

Gansbaai is a small fishing town located in South Africa’s Western Cape. It is known for its large population of great white sharks. If you’re a bit of a thrill seeker this dive is for you.Diving in the world

Here you can get up close and personal by cage diving with these great whites. Feel the adrenaline rush as you float just meters away from one of the deadliest animals in the world.

Travel Health

Are you thinking of taking a diving holiday? For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB travel health clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals.

Unusual Honeymoon Destinations

Unusual honeymoon destinationsStill deciding on a honeymoon destination? As you step into married life why not step outside your comfort zone and spend your honeymoon somewhere out of the ordinary. This is a once in a lifetime holiday so make sure it is one to be remembered. Here are some great examples of unusual honeymoon destinations for you and your partner.

Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town in South Africa offers not only an aesthetically pleasing honeymoon but also one full of adventure. Sit back, relax and enjoy wine tasting in the sun or go on a safari to see wildlife up close and personal. This is definitely an underrated honeymoon destination.

Havana, Cuba

Step back in time on your honeymoon to Cuba. The capital Havana is full of beautiful buildings and rich in history. Indulge yourself in the history as you are surrounded by bright colours, 1950’s vintage cars and music everywhere you go. Take a tour of the cigar factory and the tobacco plantations or relax with some familiar traditional Cuban drinks, such as a mojito or daiquiri. You could even try some salsa dancing together!

Marrakesh, Morocco

Morocco may seem worlds apart from your normal life but it is actually just a short flight away. Marrakesh, the capital of Morocco is full of bustling markets, mosques, palaces and gardens to explore. Honeymoon destinations

Outside of the city, you can take camel rides through the Saharan Desert or hiking/skiing in the Atlas Mountains. But nothing is more romantic than a hot-air balloon ride at dawn over the city.

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Punta Cana is perfect for a luxurious honeymoon. With a wide variety of 5* resorts, you will be spoilt for choice. Well known for its beautiful beaches, clear waters and golfing there is something for everyone. Day trips around Punta Cana can bring you to Hoyo Azul, where you can swim in a natural pool only reached by a timber staircase and footbridge. You can also go trekking or zip lining through the beautiful forest.

Andaman Islands, India

The Havelock Island, just one of many of the Andaman Islands, hosts beach resorts that offer a luxurious stay for you and your loved one. Sunbathe on the stunning white beaches or venture into the crystal clear waters and go scuba diving with the exotic marine life. You can also travel over to the Andaman’s Island capital and visit the cellular jail, this jail is where the British kept freedom fighters during the Indians struggle for independence.

Nairobi, Kenya – Unusual Honeymoon Destinations

If you would like to spend your honeymoon surrounded by wild and exotic animals Nairobi is the place for you. You can visit the Nairobi Animal Orphanage, a treatment and rehabilitation center for many different wild animals. You can take the Safari walk, which is a walk along an elevated boardwalk that winds through the Safari park, home to rhinos, cheetahs, leopards and lions. South Africa

If that’s not enough adventure for you, stay in the Giraffe Manor, a boutique hotel that is also home to endangered giraffes.

Giza, Egypt

Giza is another unusual honeymoon destination. Spend your days exploring the Egyptian pyramids, the Great Sphinx and the history museums. At night take a romantic evening cruise down the River Nile with exquisite food and entertainment.

Koh Samui, Thailand

Thailand’s second biggest island hosts lots of activities for couples to enjoy. Whether it be treating yourselves to a spa day or a romantic sunset dinner on the beach. You can also enjoy a traditional Thai food buffet while sailing around the stunning Koh Samui coast. Perfect for those couples who would enjoy a more relaxing honeymoon with spectacular views and fine dining.

Travel Health

If you are thinking of travelling somewhere exotic for your honeymoon we have a range of travel health services available for both you and your partner before you go. For more information contact TMB.

Amazing summer student travel deal

 

TMB student travel bundle offerFantastic Student Travel Bundle Offer

If you are a student planning your summer trip then make sure you take advantage of our Student Travel bundle offer!

Preparation is key

Take the time to make sure you have everything sorted before your summer adventure.  Make sure you are fully prepared and protected against possible health risks with this incredible student travel bundle offer.

The TMB Student bundle offer covers all of your travel medicine needs before you go from only €143.50pp.
This great price means that you and your friend can save your money for making lifelong memories during your travels.

What does the bundle offer include?

  • Vaccines: Hepatitis A, Typhoid, Tetanus, Diphtheria and Polio.
  • In-depth consultation
  • Specially tailored prescription for the trip
  • International Certificate of Vaccination (Yellow Book)
  • Malaria prescription where recommended
  • €5 voucher for Travelshop.ie
  • 24/7 helpline service

To avail of this offer, you must simply present a valid Student Leapcard upon booking and there must be two or more students attending a Tropical Medical Bureau clinic at the same time.

For students heading abroad, it is particularly important that they are covered against possible diseases and aware of the possible health risks with their chosen destination. For many, this will be your first trip abroad without your families or adult supervision and so it is your responsibility to look after yourself.

Plus you can win a €400 One4All voucher on the Tropical Medical Bureau Facebook page!

Travel gadgets

The offer also includes a voucher for Travelshop.ie, where you can pick up all your travel accessories from adapters and waterproof phone/camera/iPad cases to more gadgets like the LifeStraw – an ideal accessory for anyone planning a trip off the beaten path!

Travel health

For travel health tips and advice call into your local TMB travel health clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals. Our experts will guide you through the health requirements for your destination, telling you all you need to know about vaccinations, mosquito bite prevention and food hygiene.

*Terms and conditions apply.

Top free things to do on holidays

South AmericaIf you’re travelling on a budget, then you’re in luck! There are lots free things to see and do on every holiday. Forget spending your entire travel budget on overpriced tourist attractions, pricey admission tickets and expensive events. If you do a little research before your trip, you will see that every area has plenty to offer, without huge costs.  Here are some of our favourite free things to do on holidays.

Hiking

If the destination has a beautiful mountainous landscape,  you can be sure that there is trail you can follow. Whether you are visiting South America or South East Asia there are many hikes to enjoy.

Festivals

Most destinations offer some festivals and fairs. Depending on where you are, you can find festivals based around music, art, food or other outdoor activities.festival

Though some festivals may have a hefty price tag, you would be surprised by how many festivals are free, such as the Lantern Festival in Taiwan.  All it takes to discover these events is some research.

Beaches

Find a nearby beach for some fun and relaxation. Couples, families and friends can all enjoy the beach. Kids will love playing in the sand and building sand castles. Adults can take a romantic stroll along the shore, and if the water is safe, everyone can enjoy a swim in the sea.

Free museums

Wherever you are travelling , there is a history, a story, and interesting things to learn.  You will be surprised by how many museums around the world are free to visit.  In some countries,  even well-known museums offer days and times where you are granted free entry.

Mexico Museum

Six centuries’ worth of art is available at Museo Soumaya, Mexico City without an entrance fee.

Parks

National and State parks have been preserved and constructed simply for your enjoyment. For kids, it’s a good opportunity to teach them about nature, wildlife, and the environment with a first-hand experience. National and State parks have plenty of activities for everyone including cycling, hiking, fishing, swimming, and camping.

Farmers Markets

Visiting a Farmer’s Market is not only an enjoyable experience, but it can help you to get a flavour of the destination.  You can see the unique fruits, vegetables,  spices and other products from the area. india 2Not only is there free access to these markets but most vendors offer free samples of their wines, chocolates, coffee and more.  You are in for a treat!

Travel Health

We hope you enjoyed our top free things to do on holidays. Thinking of your next adventure? Visit us at one of our TMB clinics and speak to a qualified professional about the different vaccinations you may require.

Best group holiday destinations

Best group holiday destinations 1Travelling with a group is an amazing way to discover the world. Whether you’re with friends or on an organised group trip, you can go anywhere with the comfort of knowing that you are never alone. From action-packed holidays to relaxing cultural getaways, we have compiled a list of some of the best group holiday destinations.

Vietnam

Vietnam has something for everyone! If you and a group are looking for an exotic location that will fit into everybody’s budget, this charming country is for you.  Learn to practice traditional yoga, taste the local cuisine and see the UNESCO World Heritage Site – Ha Long Bay. With a group trip to Vietnam, you are guaranteed to make unforgettable memories.

Colombia

In recent years, Columbia has become a prime destination for group travellers. Colombia has evolved into a peaceful country with exciting cultural offerings, a vibrant dining scene, beautiful architecture and, of course, incredible coffee.Best group holiday destinations 3JPG

Head to Cartagena to visit the oldest port city which combines urban charm. Cartagena also sits on the shores of the Caribbean, so a group boat trip to Playa Blanca on the Isla de Barú is perfect for a day of sun and turquoise water.

Bangkok

Bangkok, Thailand’s capital is a favourite destination among group travellers. With its famous local cuisine as well as its abundance of art, it is hard to not to fall in love with Bangkok. There is also plenty of history, shopping, and scenery for you and the group to take in.

India

India is a vast South Asian country with a diverse landscape. From Himalayan peaks to Indian Ocean coastline and history reaching back 5 millennia, there’s plenty for all kinds of groups. Plus, it is the perfect destination for food-loving friends.India Food is a fantastic way of connecting with any destination. Go sightseeing and visit some of India’s famous temples like the Taj Mahal and solidify the day’s adventures in your memory over delicious Indian food and drink.

Phuket – best group holiday destinations

Phuket, Thailand is more than spectacular beaches and sunshine. This area is perfect for a group who love water sports as well as those who like to relax.  Enjoy diving, zip lining, white water rafting, horseback riding and more. Take a day out together to James Bond Island or go swimming with the fish at Raya & Coral Island for the ultimate group bonding experience.

Travel Health

Are you thinking of taking a group holiday? We have a range of group travel health services which will be of help to you as you organise your group trip. For more information, book an appointment at a TMB Clinic. 

Why every couple should travel before marriage

Why every couple should travel before marriage

travel before marriage

Whether you’re recently engaged or you just know marriage is on the horizon, travel before marriage is a great way of getting to know your other half on a whole other level before the big day is set in stone.
Read on to see why every couple should travel before marriage.

Make memories

travel before marriage

Dating life is different than married life and your adventures are likely to be unique too. So, travelling before marriage will ensure you create one-of-a-kind memories!
Once you know your partner is the one, hopping on a plane and adventuring together is the perfect opportunity to make long-lasting memories.
Plus, you’ll also gather some spectacular pictures together for the wedding video montage!

Learn how to compromise

travel before marriage

An important part of married life is knowing how to compromise.
When you and your partner travel together it’s inevitable that you’ll be confronted with situations that will challenge both of you. As a result, you’ll learn how to make these decisions as a team.
Travel is a great way to learn how to meet your partner halfway. This quality is vital for any marriage to work! With travel, you can learn this skill before you tie the knot.

Lighten your bucket list

travel before marriage

There’s no denying it, we all have a travel bucket list. And, going into married life with a completely unchecked list may put some pressure on you and your spouse.
Before marriage, you often have fewer obligations and more free time – travelling with your partner before marriage gives you the opportunity to put yourselves first. Make sure to make the most of this special period together.

Focus on one another

travel before marriage

Your significant other will eventually be your travel buddy for life. It’s important to get to know each other inside out as much as possible before the big day.
Without the distractions of everyday life, you’ll have the opportunity to discover additional traits and interests of your partner. This will bring both of you even closer to each other before your big day.

It’s never too late travel before marriage

travel before marriage

If you’re reading this and you’re married, don’t think that it’s too late!
There are many benefits to travelling before marriage, but there are also just as many when travelling with your husband or wife.
Take that honeymoon you never took, book a trip for your anniversary, or plan that family holiday you have always wanted to take.

We hope that you find these reasons as to why every couple should travel before marriage inspiring!
For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB travel health clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals.

How to make friends when travelling

how to make friends while travellinHow to make friends when travelling

Making new friends from around the world is what makes travelling so exciting. Whether you are travelling on your own, with friends or in a group, it is always worthwhile making the effort to meet new people. When you look back on your travels, it is the friendships and memories you have made that make your adventures unique. However, is not always easy to make friends in new countries. Our travel specialists have some top tips on how to make friends when travelling to help make the process a little easier.

Be confident

Confidence is not something that comes naturally to everyone, but when you are travelling you sometimes need to push yourself out of your comfort zone.  It is important to be open-minded and curious while travelling to get the most out of the experience.

The first step to how to make friends when travelling is to start a conversation with someone new.  This might seem daunting at first but once you start making the effort it becomes much easier.

Stay in hostels

Hostels are perfect places to stay to meet other like-minded travellers. They are full of globetrotters that are doing the same activity as you, so starting conversations are usually easy and relaxed.  Whether you are sharing a dormitory or you are eating breakfast in the canteen area with other backpackers, there are plenty of opportunities to meet new people in hostels.

A lot of hostels also host events, meet-ups and group activities. So even if you don’t make friends with the people you are sharing a room with, there will be plenty of chances to do so elsewhere.

Volunteer – How to make friends when travelling

Volunteering has become increasingly popular in recent years as a way to give back to the place you are visiting. As well as helping the local community, volunteering also gives you the opportunity to practice and develop your social skills. You will meet people who share common interests with you, so it is extremely likely you will build some friendships by the end of your time volunteering.

How to make friends while travelling

Take a class or book a group tour

To make friends while travelling it is good to be open and enthusiastic while doing something fun that interests you. What better way to do so than by taking a class with other people and learning a new skill. It could be salsa lessons in Argentina, cooking classes in Thailand, a surf lesson in Bali or a scuba diving course in Mexico.

If classes aren’t for you, a great alternative is to book a group tour. Taking part in something adventurous or interesting is a great way to make friends when travelling.

Embrace public transportation

Travelling by plane, train, bus or boat can be a social experience. Ask the person next to you about the book their reading, offer them a sweet or simply strike up a conversation about the destination they are travelling to. It is passing conversations you have while travelling that creates the chance to build new friendships while abroad.how to make friends while travelling

Travel Health

We hope that you find these tips on how to make friends when travelling useful. For more travel health tips and advice call your local TMB travel health clinic and speak to one of our qualified professionals.

 

Have a Healthy and Happy Valentine’s Day

Valentine's Day

Have a Healthy and Happy Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is filled with love and romance, both at home and abroad. Whether you spend this special day in a tropical paradise or gift a loved one with a fabulous getaway, you won’t want anything to spoil it. From sightseeing the temples of Bangkok to a safari drive in South Africa, travel experiences offer a chance to spend quality time together in stunning surroundings. However, the key to any trip is to remember that ‘your health is your wealth’. Here are some travel tips to help keep you and those you care about happy and healthy on Valentine’s Day.

Be prepared

If you are going on a romantic holiday, be prepared. Make sure to check if vaccinations are required for your chosen destination.

Pack the right supplies

When on a romantic holiday with your loved one you will want to look and feel your best. Let’s face it, insect bites and getting burnt to a crisp don’t look pretty.  Ensure to pack your sunscreen and insect repellent to avoid looking like a half-eaten lobster.

Be sensitive

Consider that your Valentine may have allergies, asthma, diabetes, or other health conditions. You can be sensitive to your Valentine by finding out if certain foods, flowers, pets, stuffed animals, or other items might affect their health.

Valentine's Day

Spread love, not germs

A runny nose or a chesty cough is not attractive nor pleasant to have.  Washing your hands often, avoiding close contact when you or someone you know is sick and getting a yearly flu vaccination can protect you from catching or spreading a cold and flu.

Be food-conscious

Travelling with your loved one can be a relaxing, exhilarating and delightful experience but this is only possible if you maintain your health.  Avoid nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea by avoiding uncooked foods, ice and dairy products on your romantic holiday. Instead of going out for food consider making a healthy Valentine’s meal together instead. Valentine's Day

Have a healthy and happy Valentine’s Day and avoid illness overseas. Travellers are strongly advised to book an appointment at one of the many TMB clinics and find out about the vaccinations they may require. 

How to unwind on holidays

How to unwind on holidaysHow to unwind on holidays

During your holidays, with all the excitement, it is easy to forget to rest. A trip away offers you the chance to try new activities, sample different food, see new places and to socialise with others. It is easy to forget to take some time to relax and recharge. Intentional and mindful rest during your holiday will help to improve your health but also will ensure you feel re-energized when you return home. Here are a few tips on how to unwind on holidays.

It’s not all about fitting everything in

If you like to explore your destination, it is great to have a few activities and excursions organised in advance of your holiday. However, try not to over plan your time away. Trying to do and see too much can become exhausting.  By taking your time, you can truly appreciate your surroundings.  It is good to know when to let go of your plans and to just enjoy the moment.

How to unwind on holidays

Have some time to yourself

If you are travelling with a group or a loved one don’t try to always keep up with one another and your itineraries. It is your holiday too, remember to make some space for yourself, do things only you like to do. If you are with others who want to go sightseeing but you rather lounge by the beach, don’t be afraid to communicate this. Simply spend the day on the beach relaxing – but just make sure not to get too relaxed that you fall asleep without topping up your sunscreen.  With some time to yourself, you will feel happier and more relaxed on your holiday as a pay-off.

Have an early night

Just because you are on your holidays doesn’t mean you need to be out every night. A long, lingering dinner, a few glasses of good wine and bed before midnight will mean you will wake up feeling more refreshed than you have done in months.

Limit your phone time

We cannot deny that many of us today spend too much time looking into our phone screens, so taking some time to appreciate your surroundings when away is certainly a good idea.

How to unwind on holidaysThe thought of a phone detox during your holiday is a tempting challenge for some. However, this can be more stressful than it is worth, causing you to overthink about who may or may not be contacting you. To unwind on your holidays, try to put your phone away for a few hours. Limiting your phone time is a great alternative to a phone detox.

Take some time out to reflect

Did you know that a brain chemical, called serotonin, is released whenever you reflect on meaningful events and achievements from the past? Take time out during your holiday to relax and think through personal accomplishments that you are grateful for. Think about the people who inspire and motivate you to achieve your goals. Visualizing these events will fuel and energize you to get back to your lives after your holiday.

Travel Health

We hope you enjoyed our tips on how to unwind on holidays. Thinking of your next adventure? Visit us at one of our TMB clinics and speak to a qualified professional about the different vaccinations you may require.

Best detox spas and retreats in Thailand

retreats in Thailand

Best detox spas and retreats in Thailand -Detox Thailand 

Escape from the stresses of your daily life at a detox spa or retreat center in one of the most beautiful places in the world! Travel has evolved in recent years and with healthy living being a massive trend in the last decade more travellers are now putting emphasis on their physical, spiritual and psychological well-being. Whether you need a two-week getaway challenge, or you are looking to spend a month in absolute relaxation bliss, there is something to suit everyone’s needs and wishes.  Here are some of the best detox spas and retreats in Thailand for 2018.-detox Thailand 

Santosa –Beach retreat

Santosa Phuket provides great value programs with spectacular views of the sea in a peaceful setting in Phuket, Thailand.  Their detox Thailand programs start at 3 days and go up to 21 days. Guests can choose from a range of daily activities including aerial yoga, Zumba, and even traditional Thai boxing.

After a morning of fun and exercise,  you can recharge with one of their signature spa treatments. Diet is another important part of their detox Thailand programme. Guests can refuel from a selection of tasty vegan and raw food.

Chiva-Som – Lavish spa retreat

Located in the majestic city of Hua Hin, the Chiva-Som (meaning Haven of Life) offers a sanctuary of beauty and serenity. Surrounded by stunning gardens and extraordinary views of the Gulf of Thailand you will feel as if you are in paradise.retreats in Thailand

With 70 treatment rooms, this award-winning Spa provides the ultimate spa experience and offers exquisite cuisine. Only organically-grown fruits and vegetables from the Chiva-Som garden are used. Take a morning Thai Chi class and experience some of the many spa treatments this resort has to offer.

New Leaf Detox – weight loss retreat

New Leaf Detox is renowned for their all-inclusive weight loss retreats. This attracts a variety of people whom all have the same goal in common – improving health through diet and fitness. retreats in Thailand

Their weight loss and juice fasting programs start at a minimum of 3 days to a maximum 28 days. The program is a combination of fitness activities, holistic massages and meditation, with a natural detox diet.  Guests stay in one of the tranquil poolside bungalows that are situated right next to the breathtaking  Lamai beach.

Banyan Tree – Luxury spa

Visit Banyan Tree Spa Phuket for the most uplifting and rejuvenating spa experience you will ever have.  Imagine waking up to the sounds of water,  starting your day with an organic breakfast, practising yoga midday and enjoying a massage to wind down in the evening. This is the routine you can experience at Banyan Tree. Their famous eastern therapies and holistic focus make it the perfect place to relax and re-energise.

Museflower Retreat – mindfulness retreat

This boutique retreat is located in Chiang Rai, Northern Thailand. Surrounded by a serene lake and lush rice fields this centre is the ideal destination to reboot and disconnect from the hustle and bustle of your everyday life. The most popular package among guests is the 4 days and 3-night stay.

retreats in Thailand

Museflower is a mindfully green retreat that includes yoga classes, holistic treatments and the picture-perfect setting.  Whether it’s sipping tea by the picturesque lake, cycling within nature or taking a leisurely dip in their Himalayan salt pool, you are sure to feel revitalised and ready to take on the world again.

Travel Health

Are you thinking of taking a detox spa holiday or a  retreat in Thailand! Book an appointment at a TMB Clinic to find out more about your destination and any vaccinations you may need.

Skiing Holiday Tips

Skiing Holiday TipsSkiing Holiday Tips

Skiing and snowboarding holidays are all the rage at the moment – and it’s easy to see why! What’s not to love about whizzing down the slopes, taking in beautiful Alpine scenery as you go? If you’re a ski first-timer then chances are you’re a little intimidated or baffled by the prospect. From lift passes to equipment hire, there’s a lot to organise and it can be tricky knowing where to start. Let our skiing holiday tips help you out…

Rent equipment

Skiing is a really fun and addictive sport, but one of our top skiing holiday tips is that it’s definitely advisable to rent equipment on your first trip. The same goes for snowboarding. Whether you are going to a ski resort in Japan, Europe or even South America you won’t know how comfortable you feel on the slopes until you get out there. Equipment is expensive to buy and bulky to carry – you can easily rent skiing equipment at all of the top resorts around the world. Be honest about your level of experience at the ski shop and their experts will set you up with the appropriate gear. In the unlikely event that the sport is not for you, you don’t want to be stuck with an expensive outfit you’ll never wear again.

Dress appropriately

Leave your fashionable get-ups at home. The most important thing is to have a breathable ski suit and fleece to keep you warm when you’re out and about. Don’t wear white on the slopes – bright colours are a must. Spend time choosing the best boots for you. Believe us, you don’t want your much-anticipated getaway to be ruined by achy or blistered feet. For extra grip, purchase clip-on spikes.

Beware of the sun

Temperatures differ from place to place but the sun can be as strong on the slopes as it is on the beach. Check the weather conditions of your destination and be prepared packing plenty of high-quality sun cream with you. It is important to remember to re-apply this throughout the day. Sunglasses are a skiing holiday essential – splash out on shatterproof ones if you can. Swollen, cracked lips are common on the slopes so make sure you also bring lots of lip balm with you.

Get skiing lessons

No matter how much of a natural you think you will be, ski lessons are essential for first-timers. Not only will you learn the ropes in a safe and comfortable environment, you’ll also have a lot of fun meeting other travellers. If you pick up the sport really quickly you can always advance to a higher level class.

skiing holiday tips

Exercise before you go

A lot of people underestimate how tiring and physical an activity skiing is. Sure, it looks simple gliding down the runs but this actually requires a lot of endurance and strength.  Another of our top skiing holiday tips is to make an effort to get your heart rate up and work your leg muscles before your trip – hit the gym, cycle to work and do some cardio in front of the TV at night. If you can, head to an indoor ski slope before you go to get a taste of what skiing is really like.

Get travel insurance

Accidents sometimes happen, no matter how careful you are. It is essential that you get travel insurance before your trip and that your policy includes all of the winter sports you will be doing. This not only ensures you are covered in the unfortunate event that something goes wrong, it also gives you peace of mind for the duration of your holiday.

skiing holiday tips

Travel Health

By following these skiing holiday tips you will enjoy an exhilarating experience on the piste this winter. With amazing skiing destinations in Japan, South and North  America and Europe you’ll be silly to miss out. For further information on your medical needs or further safety tips, book an appointment at a local TMB clinic.