The Philippines is a stunning collection of tropical islands with lots to offer to visitors including beautiful white-sand beaches, charming villages, world-class diving and the friendliest locals.
But after buying your flights and discovering whether you require a visa for the Philippines or a Philippines eTA visa waiver for Taiwan citizens, it is important to determine which travel vaccines for the Philippines you need for your visit.
Recommended Travel Vaccines for the Philippines
The following vaccines are highly recommended for all those traveling to the Philippines:
- Yellow fever: All travelers over 1 year old require a vaccination certification for yellow fever.
- Tetanus: Tetanus is caused when cuts, burns, and wounds come into contact with spores found in the soil. These spores are located everywhere in the world.
- Diphtheria: People can become infected with diphtheria when they come into contact with respiratory droplets from another infected person. There is a higher risk in poorer and overpopulated areas.
- Hepatitis A: This is a risk in places with poor levels of hygiene and sanitation and is mainly passed on through dirty food.
- Hepatitis B: Children with cuts and scratches are particularly at risk.
- Rabies: People catch rabies when the saliva of an infected animal enters their bloodstream via a bite, scratch or lick. Dogs, cats, and bats are the most common source of the disease. It’s best to avoid all contact with animals during your stay.
- Typhoid: Typhoid is caught by consuming contaminated water.
As well as giving yourself enough time for your vaccines, you should also apply for a visa to the Philippines well in advance. In the case of Taiwanese passport holders, the eTA visa waiver for the Philippines is the fastest and simplest way to gain access into the country. All you will need is a valid passport, a current email address, and a credit or debit card so you can pay the corresponding fee.
Which Other Viruses Should I Worry About in the Philippines?
Aside from the above-mentioned diseases, there are some other less common health issues to consider before you travel, such as Zika and cholera.
Is there Zika in the Philippines?
There is a risk of Zika transmission in the Philippines. Although the number of reported cases is low, it is still a concern.
Infectious bites are more likely to occur during the day than at night. The virus can be transmitted sexually and is particularly serious for pregnant women as it can lead to birth defects in the fetus.
Is There Cholera in the Philippines?
Cholera is contracted through contaminated water and food. There is cholera in some parts of the Philippines. The risk is higher in places without proper sanitation and where clean drinking water is unavailable.
Always drink bottled water, and even use it for brushing your teeth. Also avoid raw food such as salad, which may have been rinsed in contaminated water.
Other Travel Vaccines for the Philippines
The following may or may not be needed, depending on where you intend to go.
- Japanese encephalitis: For most visitors to the Philippines, the risk of Japanese encephalitis is extremely low. The risk is higher if you will spend much time outside in rural areas and during the summer and fall.
- Malaria: You probably don’t need a vaccine for malaria if you are going to be in lowland areas (below 600 meters). Those who will be visiting the provinces of Palawan, Tawi-Tawi, Zambales and Zamboanga del Norte will be at higher risk.
Provided you take the necessary precautions and vaccinate yourself against the most common diseases, you need not worry. Always check your government’s international travel advice and remember to take care with drinking water.
As long as you take these simple precautions, you should be able to enjoy a fantastic stay in this wonderful country. Also be sure to check out the Philippines visa requirements and Philippines visa policy before you start packing.