1. Check that you are up to date
Check you're up-to-date with all your routine vaccines – in particular measles, hepatitis B, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), polio, flu and Covid. It's important to check that other people who will be travelling with you in your whānau are also up to date. Tamariki and older adults may have different requirements.
2. Get the right advice
Check exactly what's needed for the areas you're travelling to. It may be recommended to have vaccinations to protect against other diseases such as yellow fever, rabies, cholera, hepatitis A, and typhoid.
The following links give advice for travel to different parts of the world:
Safe Travel(external link) (NZ)
Fit for travel(external link) (NHS Scotland)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Travelers’ Health(external link) (CDC)
WHO Travel and health(external link) (World Health Organisation).
Your healthcare provider will recommend vaccinations depending on your risk. This varies according to:
- your general health and immune system
- where and how long you are travelling
- the season
- what type of activities you will be doing
- what type of accommodation you'll be staying in.
3. Plan ahead
Allow enough time to get your vaccinations before your travel – preferably 3 months because some vaccinations only need a single dose but others may need a few doses over a few weeks to protect you. If you're short on time, some vaccines can be given closer together. You may also want to get at least the first dose of certain vaccines so you get some protection before your trip. These include hepatitis A, Japanese encephalitis, and rabies vaccines.
Planning ahead also gives your body time to adjust to the vaccine before you leave. Read more about single and multiple dose vaccines(external link).
4. Costs of vaccines
Routine vaccinations on the National Immunisation Schedule(external link) are usually free but you will need to pay for other vaccines.
5. Find out if you need a vaccination certificate to enter the country you're travelling to
Vaccination certificates are needed to enter some countries. For example, for some countries you need proof of vaccination against yellow fever.