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Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
1 post
3 reviews

Do we need to get immunizations to travel to South Africa from the US?

8 replies to this topic
Washington DC...
Level Contributor
4,817 posts
13 reviews
1. Re: Immunizations

There are none required. It's a good time to check up on whether you are current with standard shots. If you're going to malaria area, you should consider anti-malarials.

Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
60 posts
33 reviews
2. Re: Immunizations

For an answer, the best sources of information are the U.S. CDC (https:/…south-africa) and your own physician.

Long Island, New...
Level Contributor
6,821 posts
21 reviews
3. Re: Immunizations

Nothing is required. I use the opportunity to get up to date with vaccinations we should all get. Now is a good time because they are at no added cost under the preventative services under the ACA in 2018 (not likely covered at no added cost in the future).



Just note Hep A and Hep B vaccines are tough to find right now.

Saint Paul, MN
Level Contributor
97 posts
4 reviews
4. Re: Immunizations

do you book a appt with regular dr. or a travel dr?????? I have no idea if I have my hep a vaccine, I see it is recomended right now to travel to s. africa.

Tempe, Arizona
Destination Expert
for South Africa, Sabi Sand Game Reserve
Level Contributor
9,603 posts
65 reviews
5. Re: Immunizations

The need for any of the Hepatitis vaccinations is hard to pin down. Unsanitary conditions get the blame for Hepatitis - but these are virtually never a problem in most safari itineraries.

Travel clinics have earned a reputation for over-dramatizing the dangers out there. At the same time, I don't believe this forum is the best source for credible advice.

Anecdotes? Yes. We can offer those.

I don't get any vaccinations. I don't take malarone. I do use a repellent with DEET in it.

I produced one documentary in the boondocks of Ethiopia and Kenya - and got 'shot' with most everything. And would again if I ever had such an opportunity.

But not for a regular safari itinerary.

5 posts
6. Re: Immunizations

So I'm going to Cape Town and planning to go to Kruger in August. Is it necessary to take malaria pills and take vaccinations related to animals or dirty water/ food? Flying in from Hong Kong.

Washington DC...
Level Contributor
4,817 posts
13 reviews
7. Re: Immunizations

I believe the recommendation (but not requirement for entry to S.A.) for the Hep A vaccine has more to do with bolstering your health protection generally rather than guarding you from an increased risk of Hep A in S.A. Hep A can be contracted anywhere, including the U.S. where outbreaks occur from time to time, so many health organizations recommend having it under one's belt (not literally). Similarly, although the typhoid vaccination may be recommended there are usually qualifications relating to areas where the risk is high. For most standard tourist itineraries, I don't believe the risk for either disease will be increased.

Regarding malaria, the Dept Health S.A. recommends antimalarials Sept-May and bite avoidance only at other times. Nevertheless, the choice is one's own: some follow the advice above, others take it whenever visiting, and some never.

In any case, do some reading and discuss the matters with your doctor.

Edited: 13 May 2018, 06:08
5 posts
8. Re: Immunizations

Thanks Steve!!

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