Vaccinations, not exactly the most enjoyable part of traveling, but essential never the less. Travelling to South America, we expected that we would need a few more than your average Summer holiday to Spain, but we didn’t expect quite how much it would cost us!
Wow, Rabies, there’s a nasty virus if there ever was one! Quoted from wikipedia:
The rabies virus infects the central nervous system, ultimately causing disease in the brain and death.
I don’t know about you but I think I’ll give that one a miss. Luckily we can protect ourselves from the ravaging dogs with a handy vaccine available from your doctor. Unluckily this will most likely set you back over £100! My vaccination is costing £135.
Obviously, there is no debate when it comes to this. Its not only dogs that can carry the virus but any warm blooded animal, and if you’re unfortunate enough to come in contact with one of the infected, well, to put it nicely, you’re pretty much stuffed.
If you want to avoid turning into a slobbering mad man (or woman) I would set aside at least £150 for this vaccine. The key thing we have learned here though is shop around. Doctors Surgeries can pretty much charge what they like for this because its not on the NHS, and some make more of a mark up than others. For example I was originally quoted £155 by my local surgery, but by calling around we found it for £135 just a few more miles away.
Not quite as scary as rabies, but again you would have to be pretty crazy to risk getting it. This one is passed on by pesky female mosquitoes, and can be no worse than a fever for three days if you are lucky. If you’re not, 15% of yellow fever infections enter a toxic stage where things get nasty.
My yellow fever vaccination is costing £40 so is much less expensive than the rabies vacine. Again its important though, and some countries will not allow you entry unless you have had it.
There is no vaccine for this one, and once again its transmitted by those pesky female mosquitoes. Fortunately for us there are a large number of antimalarial tablets available that are effective.
The cost of these varies depending on the type of tablet you decide on. All the tablets have unwanted side effects, some more severe than others so this should be taken into account when making a choice. Also, check online or ask your doctor which tablets are suitable for where you are going because some tablets aren’t recommended for some locations.
You should also make sure you bring a lot of very good mosquito repellent and buy a mosquito net as these should prevent the mosquitoes biting you in the first place.
Those above are the ones you will be needing to pay for but there are plenty of others that you need that you should get on the NHS free (if you are in the UK). To name a few, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Bird Flu, Tetanus, Typhoid and quite a few more.
Make sure you book an appointment with your doctor at least 8 weeks before you plan on traveling so the vaccines will be effective before you leave, and set aside enough money! It may be another unwelcome expense but I’m sure you will agree its a necessary one.