Be and Stay a Healthy As You Cruise
More than 12 million people set off on a cruise from North American ports every year. Most of them return refreshed and with happy memories. But a small proportion don’t feel so good. They fall victim to an onboard infection that sweeps through the ship.
The most common cruise illness is Norovirus. It’s mainly a vomiting bug without long term effects. But that’s not much consolation if you’re cruising for just a week or two. It’s highly infectious, which means that once someone gets it, it roars through the “captive” environment of a cruise ship.
That said, there are several things you can do to limit the risk of becoming infected while cruising. The most important tactic is as simple as regular hand washing — because the virus spreads through physical contact, not just with other people but with virtually anything you can touch.
In fact, if you can avoid touching railings, bathroom door handles and elevator buttons, so much the better. Avoiding buffet areas, where people handle the same utensils and even breathe over the food can also help if there’s actually an outbreak onboard. And keep hand sanitizer with you or in your stateroom.
You should also drink plenty of water, but this should preferably be bottled, especially if the virus is already onboard. And when you visit ports, you should also take water from your cruise ship with you.
It’s worth noting by the way, that Norovirus is not just a cruise sickness and the above rules might help you if the illness is active locally.
Cruising also increases the risk of over exposure to the sun, so always take and use sunscreen. Warning: It may be expensive on board so buy it before you go.
The other big danger is the risk of overeating. They don’t call those midnight feasts “Death By Chocolate” without reason! Try to pace your eating across the day — and get plenty of exercise to work off those calories.
One final bit of advice: Don’t forget to take out travel insurance before your trip. Although cruise lines sometimes compensate passengers for viral infections or other hazards that disrupt vacations, it’s by no means guaranteed. With good insurance, at least you can be protected if illness wrecks your vacation. Talk to us if you’d like to know more – call, click or email. harboria.com