A Travellerspoint blog

Travel Meds

First off we have to say that what we got prescribed may not be the right meds for other people, this blog entry is strictly our own experience and we are not suggesting our prescriptions to you.

We did quite a bit of research on what types of meds other travellers had taken, especially antibiotics and antidiarrheals. However, even after so much research we still knew the only real option was to visit a travel clinic and get a consultation. We visited a local travel medicine & vaccination centre and even got a price break for going as a group. The nurses were lovely and gave us lollipops after our shots....or before in Morgan's case so she wouldn't start crying. Also Caitlin sacrificed her left hand to Morgan's death grip and will be in rehab before our trip this summer to regain dexterity.

We brought all our vaccination records and based on what we had received (all your regular school vaccines) we were prescribed Typhoid and Hepatitis A. The doctor also considered our budget in what she prescribed. For example, she mentioned Japanese Encephalitis as a vaccination option but this was way out of our price range and would not likely be a high risk for where we intended to travel. We were also prescribed 72 Malaria pills each. Doxycycline was our pill of choice based on cost and reduced side effects, being the cheapest and night terror-free option. Finally, we requested Dukoral, which we had learned about through well travelled friends, and the doctor confirmed that while it will not entirely protect against travellers diarrhea, it would reduce the risk by around %70....which was more than enough incentive for us...

Besides being given prescription our doctor was a highly experienced traveller for the area we are planning to visit and was able to educate us on many thing that had not come up until that point. For example, we learned about several types of mosquitoes and that Deet is a must have (30% at least) and should be applied 30min after sunscreen and only on areas of skin which are exposed. This process must be repeated every 4 hrs to remain effective.

We HIGHLY recommend anyone who is planning on travelling to visit a travel clinic as there is plenty of health information that is available from knowledgeable staff that may not be easily found online. There is also the question of validity and reliability of what you will find online or hear from other travellers. There were several "facts" that were told to us by other travellers that didn't apply to us at all. However, we would have never known if we hadn't double checked with the doctor.

In conclusion, always visit a travel clinic and get a consultation based on your travel plans. It's just the right thing to do.

Posted by caitgan 21:49 Tagged travel cambodia thailand vietnam china laos air budget women asia flights southeast backpacking traveller itinerary planning medicine doctor vaccination malaria kayak.com vaccine cipro dukoral diarrhea Comments (0)


View South East Asia Adventure on caitgan's travel map.

Welcome back to our avid readers! You're in for a treat today, we're about to address the issue of loooow budget travelling.

Since we are a group of student loan paying, class taking, entry level job working kids we really had to think about how much we were willing to spend on our trip to Southeast Asia. The fact that we chose Asia in the first place was a telling sign that we were on a budget from the start. We did our online research on various travel and backpacking websites and talked to as many people as we could who had been to Asia before determining that we would plan for approximately $30/day which would cover our basics: Accommodation, transportation and cheap food. We planned for 61 days which came out to $1830 total. Now just busing, sleeping and eating wasn't all we wanted to do in Asia, so we also added on another $600 for touristy stuff, like:

1) Scuba Diving ~$300
2) Angkor Wat ~$40
3) Elephant riding ~$15+
4) Baby tiger holding ~$15
5) Scootering or bicycling ~$10
6) War museums in Vietnam ~$10
7) Souvenirs & Spa treatments~ $what ever we have left

When we get back from our trip we'll address exactly how far over budget we went...or how many pennies we pinched...

The important part to remember about our budget is that it does NOT include anything we purchased before our trip including: Plane tickets ($876), inoculations/prescriptions ($350), backpacking gear (~$150) and insurance ($120). Which totals about $1500. Plus another $100 if you have allergies to shellfish and peanuts like Caitlin and need at LEAST one epi-pen. :(

(We're really happy that we're done paying for this pre-trip stuff by the way...)

GRAND TOTAL (for 2 months of travel in SE asia): ~$4000 (yikes...)

Posted by caitgan 21:17 Archived in Thailand Tagged travel cambodia thailand vietnam china laos air budget women asia flights southeast backpacking itinerary planning kayak.com Comments (0)

Our Trip all Mapped out...

Posted by caitgan 21:38 Comments (0)

First Steps starts a Blog

Our Itinerary & Flights

View South East Asia Adventure on caitgan's travel map.


We are planners. What better way to channel that planning energy than to start a travel blog!

So that's what we've done. Until we leave for our trip, 64 days from now (but who's counting?), we will be blogging about the steps we took to prepare ourselves, and our travel companion, Josh, for this two month excursion to South East Asia.

We decided to make our trip 2 months long, which will give us a couple weeks to explore each of the four countries we've chosen to visit: Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos. We believe Southeast Asia will be a great choice for us as it will provide a unique backpacking experience, while keeping costs low.

We have chosen the following itinerary as a general guideline for the time we plan to spend in Asia this fall.

Sept 1st- Flight into Bangkok.
First week- travel south to Ko Tao for a 4 day diving certification with Scuba Junction
Second week- travel back through Bangkok towards Cambodia
Third week- Explore ancient Angkor, possibly on bicycles
Fourth week- Siem Reap, then towards the Vietnamese border
Fifth week- Travel up the coast of Vietnam to Ha Long Bay (the bay of the descending dragon)
Sixth Week- Across northern Vietnam to Loas and Vang Vieng
Seventh Week- Back into Thailand via Chiang Mai
Eighth Week- wiggle room
Oct 31st- Fly home

Our trip will take place near the end of the rainy season, so we expect to get wet but we also hope to be able to take advantage of the low season for traveling in this area.

Whether it was the extreme excitement or just good planning, we managed to book our flights almost 7 months in advance. It may seem a bit overzealous but we only spent $876 on each return ticket! We lucked out finding this great deal on Kayak.com after a couple weeks of surfing all the "cheap ticket" sites. Our flight is with Air China and only has one layover in Beijing. We were warned by a travel agent friend that they are not the most reliable airline, however, we have found fairly positive reviews online. Even Morgan's mom was skeptical when she found out which airline we'd chosen, warning us that we'd be carrying chickens in our laps during the flight. We'll let you know who was right...

Next time.....Budgets.


Posted by caitgan 20:45 Archived in Thailand Tagged travel cambodia thailand vietnam china laos air budget women asia flights southeast backpacking itinerary planning kayak.com Comments (0)

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