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Health and Safety

How can I find out if it is safe to travel to a particular country?

The FCO (Foreign & Commonwealth Office) is the British government department that issues advice as to whether a country is considered unsafe to travel to. UK Airlines and Tour Operators will generally follow advice given by the FCO regarding travelling to and from a country and we will endeavour to warn you of anything that is reported. The FCO website also has information on a variety of subjects that are useful to anyone looking to travel abroad.

What vaccinations do I need?
Customers who are travelling outside the UK may need to be vaccinated against some of the serious diseases found in other parts of the world. In fact, some countries require you to have an International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis (ICVP) before you enter. For additional advice on this, please consult the following website:
When is it safe to sunbathe and what factor sunscreen should I use?
It is advised to choose a sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB radiation from the sun. The SPF (sun protection factor) tells you the amount of protection the sun cream gives against UVB radiation. To give you the best protection from the sun's harmful rays, it is recommended to buy higher factors (at least factor 15). It is important to check the 'use by' date on your sun creams, as most only last around 2 to 3 years. Further information can be found at The above information is given as guidance only and Hays Travel Ltd will not accept any liability resulting in injury or harm from following the above advice. When using any skin care products, please read the manufacturer's instructions and guidelines for use.
What should be in my first aid kit / luggage when I travel?
It is always useful to include a few items in your luggage in case of any unforeseen emergencies. We suggest plasters, antiseptic cream, headache or pain relief, stomach remedies, travel sickness medication, insect repellent, after-sun lotion and cotton wool. Also, please remember to take adequate supplies of any prescribed medication with you on your holiday.
Who will pay if I need to be hospitalised overseas or flown back to the UK?

We recommend that you take out appropriate travel insurance for your overseas holiday. Should you require treatment while abroad or need to be flown back on medical ground to the UK, you can contact your travel insurance provider on their emergency contact number for further advice.
If you travel overseas without appropriate medical cover, it is likely that the full cost of any medical treatment and your early return to the UK will need to be paid for by yourself, family or friends. Please note, if you show your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) you are likely to receive free or reduced cost healthcare when visiting certain European countries.
You are welcome to ask Hays Travel about the travel insurance policies we sell, which will cover the above, dependant on policy type.

Should I be concerned about what I eat while abroad?
To ensure you make the most of new and exciting dishes and to avoid an upset stomach during your holiday, there are some simple guidelines which we recommend: ensure meat products are thoroughly cooked and piping hot before eating; wash and rinse raw food; place cooking utensils in hot water before using them for food preparation; ensure all foods are protected from birds, flies and other insects.
Is it safe to drink tap water whist on holiday?
Tap water is generally regarded as safe to drink in developed areas such as mainland Europe and America, especially in major cities and resorts. In other areas, it is recommended that you drink bottled water, which is readily available. Drinks made using boiling water are also safe to drink.