A lot of people are nervous to bring their little ones to tropical destinations for a lot of reasons – strong sun, possible bug bites, different water… but the latest illness that’s scaring people away (especially from Mexico) is H1N1 or Swine Flu.
It is scary, and the fact that it’s now a global pandemic makes it even more so. It’s widely believed that H1N1 originated in Mexico and Bonnie wrote to me wondering if it’s safe to bring her baby there…
I love your web site. I especially love people’s reviews on their holidays at specific hotels and destinations. I wanted to ask if you have any info on your site about travelling now that there’s the swine flu.
My cousin is getting married in Dec in the Mayan Riviera. My husband and I have been debating on whether it would be safe to travel there with our baby who will be 10 months old in Dec. I’d love to hear/read your views on it. I’ve tried doing some google searches on the saftey of travelling with a baby there but I can’t really find anything.
I’m also thinking about our upcoming winter travel, and I’ve always looked to the Riviera Maya as a great option. But is the risk of traveling there greater now that we have H1N1 to deal with?
Back when H1N1 was known as Swine Flu, and the initial hysteria was swirling surrounding the outbreak, I will admit that I probably would have changed my travel plans if we were headed to Mexico. However once the CDC lifted their travel advisory and the panic subsided, I figured Mexico was just as safe as any other destination and I was pleased to see that Peter Greenberg, travel editor for CBS News, agreed with me. (Especially since now Mexico is such a deal!)
But now that cold and flu season is upon us, there appears to be a resurgence in fear about H1N1. But it’s a global pandemic now, and you’re essentially just as much as risk at home as you would be on vacation. Those most likely to have complications from H1N1 include children under 5, and I shudder to think about my 5-month-old (or 3.5-year-old for that matter) coming down with such a serious flu.
That said, would I travel to the Riviera Maya this December to attend a family wedding? Absolutely. I’d be extra cautious, of course. Be scrupulous about hand washing and using hand sanitizer. Get extra travel insurance and read the fine print (the knowledgeable Peter Greenberg strikes again re: out clauses because of the pandemic).
Consult with your doctor beforehand regarding any vaccinations you may decide to get (some choose to get Hepatitis A&B vax + flu vaccine will be out by then), and be sure to pack your usual arsenal of meds “just in case” (I’m talking Tylenol & anti-histamines here).
Have a wonderful trip with your baby, Bonnie. A family wedding is a great excuse to take your first trip together – you might even have a few babysitters on hand! 😉
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