Stuff happens when you travel, particularly when the trip involves overseas adventure. While the illnesses we have encountered have luckily been limited to traveler’s tummy and altitude sickness, we always plan for more serious occurrences.
Today’s Family Adventure Travel tip: Planning for contingencies on the trail
- Consider buying an insurance policy that includes a medical evacuation plan. Bring a copy of the policy and local access numbers with you on the trip.
- Find out what inoculations or boosters you need before you go, and how long it takes for them to become effective. For example, the vaccine for yellow fever, needed for many regions in Peru, takes about 10 days to become effective, and can have side effects that kick in days after the shot is given.
- Bring over-the-counter medications, especially those for stomach-related illness. See if your doctor will send you with some antibiotics, to be used only if you really need them.
- Don’t turn down the chance for a ride on the trail. When the guide on our most recent trip introduced us to our mules, we shrugged her off, saying we had done the rigorous trek to Machu Picchu and that we were sure we would hike every step of this 4-day trail. The next morning, my husband woke up feeling punky, and was very glad to have the mules to carry him. We all rode a few times, mostly to cross streams or when the terrain became too muddy, and came away with a healthy respect for pack mules.
- Make sure you and the kids have enough snacks and water in your daypacks.
What do you put in your daypack? Is there something you’ve wished you had included that you had forgotten or decided not to bring along?