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Getting The Typhoid Vaccine For Travel: The Ultimate Guide

Here's what you need to know about the typhoid vaccine for travel: what it is, which places require it, and getting a vaccination certificate!

Imagine this: you’re exploring vibrant markets in Asia or going on a safari in Africa — exciting, right? But in some places, there’s a hidden health risk: typhoid fever.

It can really put a damper on your trip if you’re not prepared.

In this guide, we’ll break down everything you need to know about getting the typhoid vaccine for travel, including:

  • What the vaccine is
  • Which destinations require the vaccine
  • How to get a vaccination certificate
  • What to do if you lose it

Ready? Let’s go!

typhoid vaccine for travel

What Is Typhoid?

Typhoid, or typhoid fever is a serious infectious disease caused by the bacterium Salmonella Typhi.

This bacterium primarily spreads through contaminated food and water, particularly in areas with poor sanitation and hygiene practices.

When ingested, it invades the intestines and can enter the bloodstream, leading to systemic infection.

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What Is The Typhoid Vaccine?

There are two types of typhoid vaccines.
One is taken as a pill (orally), and one is given as an injection (shot).


The oral vaccine contains live, attenuated (weakened) Salmonella Typhi bacteria. It’s normally a series of pills taken over a period of time, and can be given to children aged 6 and up.


The injectable vaccine contains inactivated (killed) Salmonella Typhi bacteria. It’s only given once but needs to be repeated every 2 years. It can be given to children aged 2 and up.

How They Work

Both vaccines work by stimulating the body’s immune system to produce antibodies against the viruses:

Oral Vaccine

The live bacteria in the oral vaccine trigger the immune system to produce antibodies against Salmonella Typhi. These antibodies provide ongoing protection by recognizing and neutralizing Salmonella Typhi upon exposure, reducing the risk and severity of typhoid fever.

Injectable Vaccine

When injected into the body, the dead bacteria are recognized by the immune system as a threat. The immune system responds by producing antibodies specifically targeting Salmonella Typhi.

when to get Typhoid vaccine before traveling

Side Effects

The typhoid vaccine for travel is safe for just about everybody. But there are some side effects to be aware of.

Oral Vaccine

The Cleveland Clinic lists the side effects of the oral vaccine to be:

  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach pain

Injectable Vaccine

The Mayo Clinic lists the side effects of the injectable vaccine to be:

  • Fever
  • General feeling of discomfort or illness
  • Pain, redness, swelling, tenderness or a lump at the place of injection
  • Unusual tiredness or weakness

Countries That Require The Typhoid Vaccine For Travel

Some countries, particularly those with a higher prevalence of typhoid fever or specific health regulations, may require travelers to show proof of typhoid vaccination upon entry.

While requirements can vary and may change over time, the following regions often recommend or require the typhoid vaccine for travelers:

  • South Asia
  • Southeast Asia
  • Africa

If you’re unsure, you can always take a look at this list from the  Center for Disease Control (CDC).

Getting Your Typhoid Vaccination Certificate

After receiving your typhoid vaccine, it’s essential to obtain an official vaccination certificate. This document serves as proof of your immunization and may be required for entry into certain countries or for specific activities.

Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Visit a Certified Healthcare Provider: Ensure that you receive your typhoid vaccine from a certified healthcare provider, like a travel clinic, hospital, or doctor’s office.
  2. Ask for the Certificate: After vaccination, request a certificate that includes the following information:
  • Your full name and date of birth
  • The name and batch number of the typhoid vaccine administered
  • The date(s) of vaccination
  • The healthcare provider’s name, signature, and contact information
  • An official stamp or seal from the issuing clinic or healthcare provider
  • Digital Certificates: Some healthcare providers and clinics offer digital vaccination certificates. These can be stored on your smartphone or printed out as needed. Ensure the digital certificate contains all necessary information and is recognized by authorities.

typhoid vaccine time before travel

Managing Your Vaccination Certificate

Properly managing your vaccination certificate is essential to ensure it remains valid and accessible when needed.

Here are important steps to consider:

  1. Secure Storage: Keep your physical vaccination certificate in a safe and easily accessible place, such as a travel organizer or dedicated folder.
  2. Create Copies: Make photocopies or scan your certificate and store a digital copy on your smartphone or in cloud storage. This serves as a backup in case the original is lost or damaged.
  3. Keep It Updated: If you receive booster shots or additional vaccines, remember to update your certificate accordingly. Visit the same healthcare provider where you received your initial vaccination for updates.
  4. Travel Prepared: Always carry your vaccination certificate along with your travel documents, especially when visiting countries that require proof of vaccination for entry.

What Happens If You Misplace It

Losing your typhoid vaccination certificate can be worrisome, but there are steps you can take to replace it:

  1. Contact the Vaccination Provider: Reach out to the clinic or healthcare provider where you received your typhoid vaccine. They typically maintain records and can issue a replacement certificate upon verification.
  2. Check Digital Copies: If you have a digital version of your vaccination certificate, print it out to ensure it includes all necessary details. Many health authorities now accept digital records as valid proof.
  3. Verify National Databases: Some countries manage national immunization databases. Check if your vaccination records are stored there and request a copy if possible.
  4. Visit a Travel Clinic: If you’re unable to retrieve your certificate from the original provider, a travel clinic can help verify your vaccination status and issue a replacement certificate if needed.
  5. Maintain Personal Records: Keep a detailed record of all vaccinations, noting dates, vaccine names, and healthcare provider details. This documentation can assist healthcare providers in reconstructing your vaccination history if necessary.

typhoid vaccine how long before travel

When To Get The Typhoid Vaccine For Travel

Making sure you’re up-to-date with your vaccines before traveling is super important. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the typhoid vaccine needs to be administered at least 1 week before traveling.

Last Tip

Getting your vaccines is always a good idea. But sometimes mishaps occur. So, if something does happen, you can always use the Air Doctor app.

With the Air Doctor app in your pocket, you can access medical advice, get prescriptions, and receive expert medical guidance wherever you are in the world!

Air Doctor’s easy-to-use app gives you:

  • A global network of over 20,000 multi-lingual doctors and specialists
  • Choice of clinic, at-home (hotel), and video consultations
  • Active in 78 countries
  • Cross border prescription services
  • Video consultation services in up to 21 languages and 84 countries
  • 24/7 multi-lingual support
  • Transparent pricing, and reviews
  • Most common medical specialties

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Jenny Cohen Drefler

Jenny Cohen Derfler

Air Dr CEO & Co-Founder

Jenny is the CEO and one of the Co-Founders at Air Doctor. She spent more than 20 years at Intel, most recently as general manager of its manufacturing facility in Israel and before that in various engineering and manufacturing roles in Silicon Valley. Air Doctor is her second startup having previously founded electric vehicle company ElectRoad.