10 Items for Healthy, Germ-Free Travel.

10 Items for Healthy, Germ-Free Travel

One surefire way to torpedo your travel plans? Pick up a bug on the road. Travel stress and lack of sleep can weaken the immune system. Add to that hours in a confined space teaming with germs, and you might be spending vacay searching for doctors rather than restaurants. From headline-making illnesses like the Coronavirus to the standard cold and flu, prevention is king. The CDC recommends that you maintain distance with the sick, don’t touch your face, cover coughs and sneezes, disinfect personal spaces, and wash your hands frequently—easier said than done if you’re sardined into the dreaded middle seat. These items below will help you stay healthy while in transit, so your bon voyage stays truly “bon.” 

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MLVOC Memory Foam Travel Pillow Eye Mask, Earplugs, and Travel Bag

If you’re traveling on an overnight flight, shuteye can be hard to come by, which isn’t awesome for your immune system. Set yourself up for a decent night’s sleep (or at least a nap) with this compact sleep kit which includes a memory foam pillow, contoured eye mask, and earplugs. Hundreds of Amazon customers have praised it, saying the pillow is soft, breathable, and offers stellar neck support.

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HOOIMA Airplane Pockets Tray Cover with Pockets

Amazon reviewers give this travel hack a hefty 4.8/5 stars calling it the “best travel invention.” The Airplane Pockets Tray Cover fits right over a tray table, giving you a table cloth when the tray is down, and stretchy pockets when it’s up. It not only covers up the germiest spaces on airplanes, but keeps all of your essentials organized and within easy reach. 

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Purell Jelly-Wrap Hand Sanitizer

Sure, we’d wash our hands all the time if we weren’t trapped on a bathroom-less bus or keeping an eye on our luggage in an airport terminal. For these sorts of sticky situations, hand sanitizer is key. Even the CDC says hand sanitizer is the best alternative to soap and water, just make sure it’s packing at least 60% alcohol. We love these tiny 1 oz bottles, which can hook to a key clip or strap.

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RELATED: The Best Hand Sanitizers and Other Easy Ways to Avoid Germs While Traveling


LifeStraw Go Water Filter Bottle

Whether you’re hitting the trail, going international, or just trying to combat an airplane’s desert air, a water bottle is a necessity. This pick from LifeStraw filters water gets rid of bacteria, chemicals, microplastics, and plain old bad tastes. Staying hydrated also helps combat jet lag, which brings us to another pro-tip: Consider passing on that dehydrating alcohol on long flights—ironically, staying “dry” keeps your system lubricated. 

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Germ-X Antibacterial Hand Sanitizing Wipes

Disinfecting personal spaces can go a long way in preventing the spread of sickness. These wipes from Germ-X will kill 99.99% of common germs. We recommend them for tray tables, headrests, and armrests. Plus, they do double-duty for sticky hands and mouths. Each travel-friendly, resealable packet comes with 20 wipes, so you’ll have plenty for every surface.

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EverySnug Travel Blanket

Yes, that airplane blanket that you breathe on, sweat on, and sleep under may not be clean, even if it comes to you wrapped in plastic. It’s not really a secret—airlines admit that they only wash blankets every 5-30 days. This micro-plush travel blanket packs up into its own carrying case with a backpack clip for hooking on your personal item and a trolley strap for slipping over your luggage handle. Even if you’re not flying, it’ll help you stay cozy on a bus or train when no blankets are in sight. How’s that for BYOB?

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RELATED: The Best Travel Blankets, From Luxe Cashmere to Budget-Friendly Bamboo


Emergen-C Chewable Vitamin D Dietary Supplement

Nutrition can go by the wayside when you’re traveling, and while Emergen-C isn’t a cure-all for poor eating, some studies have shown that two of its main ingredients—zinc and vitamin D—can help prevent colds. Plus, electrolytes keep you hydrated. Unlike the powdered version, these chewable tablets aren’t a tray-table disaster waiting to happen.

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Basic Care Saline Nasal Moisturizing Spray

Believe it or not, dry mucus membranes can make you more susceptible to sickness. In addition to drinking plenty of water and avoiding alcohol (save in your hand-sanitizer), nasal spray can help your body stay hydrated in dry climates—you know, like an airplane.

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Go2Socks Compression Socks

If catching colds isn’t enough to worry about, consider that sitting for long periods can put you at risk for blood clots, and the air pressure while flying doesn’t help. Compression socks can stimulate blood flow, which reduces risk. These pairs from Go2Socks will also keep your feet stink-free and—with all the fun color options—looking fabulous.

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Nature’s Bounty 3 mg Quick-Dissolve Melatonin

Hopping time zones can do a number on your sleep schedule. Melatonin, a natural sleep aid, helps you stay on track. Consider starting Melatonin a few days before you skip time zones, taking a pill two hours before your destination bedtime. Though lots of over-the-counter Melatonin comes in pills of 10 mg or more, professionals say 3 mg is plenty. 

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