Spring Adventures: 6 Apps for Healthier Travels

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Map with camera, compass, plane and journal

It’s that time of the year again! Students and parents are packing their bags for Spring Break! Before you set out on your next big adventure, be sure to take a look at these helpful mobile apps to prepare for your trip.

TravWellTravWell app

CDC’s TravWell app helps you plan for safe and healthy international travel. This app allows you to get vaccine recommendations for specific destinations, a checklist of tasks to prepare for travel, and a customizable, healthy packing list. You can also use this app to keep your medication and immunization records and set reminders to take medicines or get vaccine booster doses while you’re traveling. This would be especially important for someone taking medicines like malaria prophylactics (drugs to prevent malaria). TravWell also lets you take pictures of important documents (passport, visa, etc.) and store them on the app as a backup in case they get lost. This app also has up-to-date recommendations from CDC for international travelers. Another great bonus is that many features are available offline, so you don’t need a data connection to access information. The app also includes local emergency service phone numbers for each country.

Can I Eat This?

Can I Eat This? appThe dreaded Montezuma’s revenge, Delhi belly, or travelers’ diarrhea—whatever you call it, can really zap the fun out of international travel. Download CDC’s Can I Eat This? app to help keep your stomach steady. First, select the country you’re in and the app will ask you a few questions about what you’re preparing to eat or drink (e.g. Does the water have ice in it? Is the meal from a street vendor?). The app will tell you whether it’s likely to be safe to eat. With this app in your corner, you can be more confident about making healthy choices abroad so you won’t spend your international trip in the bathroom. Another advantage of this app is that a data connection is not needed for access.

Yellow Book app2016 Yellow Book

We’re not talking about that old phone book! CDC Health Information for International Travel (commonly called the Yellow Book) is published every two years by CDC as a reference for health professionals. However, you may find it to be a useful reference to make sure you’re following CDC recommendations for immunizations. This app is a good resource if you are planning to meet with your healthcare provider before traveling internationally. It also has advice on how to monitor yourself for illnesses after returning from international travel, which is especially important if there is a current disease outbreak where you are traveling. The app has a simple display, is easy to understand, and includes maps for several countries.


FEMAYou don’t need to leave the continent to practice personal preparedness! The FEMA app is a great resource for preparedness alerts and safety tips while traveling within the U.S. Not only does the app allow you to set up alerts from the National Weather Service, but it also provides FEMA safety tips on how to stay safe in over 20 types of emergency situations. When you are traveling in an unfamiliar area, it’s also important to be aware of local disaster resources. The FEMA App provides driving directions to local shelters and other disaster recovery centers. The app is also available in Spanish.

Safe Traveler appSmart Traveler

Stay safe and be smart while traveling abroad. The Smart Traveler app, developed by the State Department, gives you easy access to official country information, including maps and U.S. embassy locations. Get travel alerts and warnings all in one place and create personal itineraries and organize your trips. The app also allows you to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) for free. This program helps the State Department assist you in an emergency, including natural disasters. It can also help your family and friends get in contact with you if there is an emergency.

First Aid

First Aid appThis American Red Cross First Aid app gives you expert first aid advice for your day-to-day emergencies. The app provides step-by-step instructions for first aid situations you might encounter in your day to day life. You can also get safety and preparedness tips for a variety of emergencies, including winter weather, hurricanes and tornados. No internet access is required and the content is available in Spanish.

For more information on making international travel plans, visit CDC’s Traveler Health page. Happy trails!

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4 comments on “Spring Adventures: 6 Apps for Healthier Travels”

Comments listed below are posted by individuals not associated with CDC, unless otherwise stated. These comments do not represent the official views of CDC, and CDC does not guarantee that any information posted by individuals on this site is correct, and disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from reliance on any such information. Read more about our comment policy ».

    I think that international travel poses unique risks that may not be encountered while traveling inside the U.S. The CDC apps can be very useful for keeping track of vaccination and immunization records which are vital when traveling to certain remote areas. I also think it is extremely important to have emergency numbers and locations of U.S. embassy’s as well as directions to shelters in cases of disaster emergencies. I am somewhat leery of the American Red Cross app which gives step-by-step instructions for emergency first aid; however. Though I think it is beneficial to have a grasp of some of the basic first aid necessities, it is always important to call for help from local emergency responders and healthcare professionals.

    I am traveling to India in February. What general meds should I pack to counter any country ailments, especially from food and water. Thank you

    Thanks for your comment on this Public Health Matters post. If you have a question for CDC, please contact CDC-INFO (https://www.cdc.gov/cdc-info/index.html). Operators are available by phone and email to help you find the latest, reliable, and science-based health information on more than 750 health topics. The phone number is 800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636).

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Page last reviewed: March 7, 2016
Page last updated: March 7, 2016