Travel Immunizations

Some types of international travel may have higher health risks than others. Be sure that you are up to date on all recommended vaccinations before traveling abroad.

Planning a trip abroad? There are so many things to do before you depart. But while you’re planning your itinerary and booking your flight, don’t forget your medical needs. Some destinations may pose certain health risks and require specific immunizations for visitors. There are steps you should take before you leave that can help prevent illness, and allow you to enjoy your trip.

Plan for Your Vaccinations

Finding your vaccine records and getting all the vaccines you need may take some time. You may begin by talking to or calling your primary health care professional. If they do not stock travel vaccines, you may need to ask for a recommendation to visit a travel clinic or search the travel clinic directory on the CDC website.

  1. See your healthcare professional at least 4-6 weeks before any international travel. Find out vaccine recommendations and requirements for your travel destination.
    1. The Indiana State Department of Health does NOT provide vaccinations and cannot make specific recommendations for health care providers. You should begin by talking to or calling your primary health care professional or searching the travel clinic directory on the CDC website.
  2. Ask about routine vaccines when you talk to your health care professional about travel. Take the CDC quiz to find out which routine vaccines you may need.
  3. Check if the country you are traveling to requires proof of yellow fever vaccine. The yellow fever vaccine is currently in short supply around the world, and only a registered provider can offer this vaccine. It must be administered at least 10 days before travel. You will need a stamped certificate as well. Find a registered Yellow Fever Vaccination Clinic in Indiana.

Most International Travel Clinics operate by appointment, so be sure to schedule an appointment before your visit. Be ready to discuss your travel assessment process with your healthcare provider.

Special Considerations

Zika Virus

Zika virus disease (Zika) is a disease caused by Zika virus that is spread to people primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito. The virus can also be spread from infected men and women to their sex partners or from an infected pregnant mother to her baby.

No vaccine is currently available to prevent against a Zika virus infection. Use the tips on the CDC website to protect you, your family, your friends and your community from Zika.


Measles is highly contagious, and most measles outbreaks In the United States happen because infected travelers bring it back from other parts of the world.

Before international travel, make sure the following people are immunized against measles:

  • Babies 6 months through 11 months of age should have 1 dose of measles vaccine.
  • Children 12 months of age or older should have 2 doses separated by at least 28 days.
  • Unvaccinated adolescents and adults should get 2 doses separated by at least 28 days.

Go to the CDC's Travelers' Health Measles webpage for more information.


Currently, ten countries have outbreaks of wild poliovirus that could spread to other countries through international travel.

Anyone traveling to a polio-affected country:

  • Needs to be fully vaccinated against polio.
  • Adults need a one-time booster dose of polio vaccine within 4 weeks to 12 months prior to any international travel. This booster should be documented in your yellow International Certificate of Vaccination to avoid delays in transit or over-vaccination in polio-affected countries.

If you haven't been vaccinated against polio within the previous 4 weeks to 12 months you may be required to get a one-time booster dose of polio vaccine at least by the time of departure.

Go to the CDC's Travelers' Health Polio webpage for more information.

Special Populations

Travelers going on Hajj or Umrah – Saudi Arabia

The meningococcal vaccine is required if you are taking part in Hajj. There are other vaccines that are recommended if you are going on Hajj or Umrah and traveling to other destinations.

Read more on the Hajj and Umrah Health Requirements to obtain an Entry Visa in Saudi Arabia and discuss these recommendations with your health care provider.

Read more from the CDC on other health and safety recommendations for travelers taking part in Hajj.


Contact Us

For more information on international travel contact:

Taryn Stevens