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Ready for your gap year?

Travel health on your gap year

A year out of education is a wonderful way to expand your horizons and see the world before all the responsibilities of adult life land on your shoulders. But there is one responsibility that you should not try to dodge, and that’s looking after your health. We answered a few questions posed to us by gap year travellers.

What can I do to protect my health before I leave for my gap year trip?

Eight weeks before you leave, talk to a travel health adviser. They can help with:

  • travel vaccines
  • sun care
  • safer sex
  • food and water safety
  • general travel health considerations
  • insect bite avoidance

They will also come up with a travel vaccine regime appropriate for you, and arrange malaria prophylaxis if necessary.

How do I make an appointment for travel vaccinations in Calgary?

Canadian Travel Clinics can offer same-day vaccinations at our travel clinics in Calgary. Make an appointment online right now. Our appointments are half an hour so that we can run a risk assessment that takes in all areas of your health. We can offer double appointments for long and complex itineraries – ask for one if your trip is longer than a month and takes in more than one country.

What travel vaccines will I need for my gap year expedition?

Check our destination guides for an idea of what travel vaccines our nurse advisers might recommend. But this is no substitute for a face-to-face appointment. Our travel health experts will take some details from you and generate a personalized travel health regime using the latest information from sources available only to healthcare professionals.

What information will my travel health nurse need?

As part of the comprehensive risk assessment performed at a Canadian Travel Health Clinics appointment, the nurse will ask about your health, including:

  • vaccine history
  • long-term health conditions

They will need to know about your travel plans, including details such as:

  • destinations
  • dates
  • planned activities
  • accommodation
  • whether you will have easy access to medical help
  • whether you will be at altitude

You might want to jot down any questions you have, too.

How much will my travel shots cost?

Take a look at our price list – although the prices of vaccines go up and down without notice. Our travel health advisers take great satisfaction in finding the most cost-effective regimes (this might include two-in-one shots, or boosters) for all our travellers. If you are tempted to save money by avoiding shots, think again: some vaccine-preventable illnesses (including Japanese encephalitis) can cause permanent damage to your body. Others will put you out of action for a few weeks, or even mean you have to cut short your trip.

Why should I get travel insurance for my gap year trip?

Every year thousands of Canadians discover that healthcare abroad is very, very expensive. Your bills can run to tens of thousands of dollars, and some medical facilities may turn you away if you can’t either pay up front or produce proof of insurance. Your provincial or territorial health plan will probably not cover you outside Canada, so you need to purchase separate travel health insurance. Your provincial or territorial health authority can provide you with more information. And if you are still not convinced about getting travel health insurance, find out more from our blogpost.

Any more questions?

If you have more questions, feel free to make an appointment.