India (Asia)Advice for All Destinations Vaccinations Malaria Malaria Map Other Health Risks Alerts News
The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has led to unprecedented international border closures and travel restrictions being imposed without notice.
Before making travel plans you should check all of the following:
- check the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) website for country specific Travel Advisory Notices (travel restrictions) and entry requirements
- click the 'Alerts' link on the menu above for details of your risk of exposure to coronavirus (COVID-19) in this country
- check the GOV.UK website for self-isolation (quarantine) rules for when you return to the UK
- read the information on the COVID-19: Health Considerations for Travel page
Advice for All Destinations
If you're planning to travel outside the UK, your travel health needs will depend on your individual situation, including:
- your destination
- how long you'll stay
- what you’ll be doing
- your general health
Ideally consult with your travel healthcare practitioner 6-8 weeks in advance of travel. If your trip is sooner, contact them anyway, they may still be able to help and its never too late to seek advice.
Many of the health problems experienced by travellers cannot be prevented by vaccinations and other measures need to be taken. These include food and water safety, accident prevention, care with sun exposure, avoiding insect bites and animal bites, and practicing good respiratory hygiene and hand hygiene.
For advice about travelling abroad, including the latest information on safety and security, entry requirements and travel warnings you should visit the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) website.
If you will be travelling with medication (including over the counter medication) you should check for any restrictions on medications before you travel, you can do this by contacting the embassy of the country you're visiting.
Ensure you have travel insurance and are fully covered for medical emergencies including repatriation.
Make sure you know how to access healthcare at your destination:
- A list of doctors and medical facilities worldwide can be accessed on the FCDO website.
- A worldwide list of travel clinics, run by members of the International Society of Travel Medicine is available on their website.
If you are unwell on return from travel, seek medical attention and let your healthcare practitioner know where you have been.
- Confirm primary courses and boosters are up to date as recommended for life in Britain - including for example, seasonal flu vaccine (if indicated), MMR, vaccines required for occupational risk of exposure, lifestyle risks and underlying medical conditions.
- Courses or boosters usually advised: Diphtheria; Hepatitis A; Tetanus; Typhoid.
- Other vaccines to consider: Hepatitis B; Rabies.
- Selectively advised vaccines - only for those individuals at highest risk: Cholera; Japanese Encephalitis.
Yellow fever vaccination certificate requirements for India are specific and quite lengthy, to read the full details via the W.H.O Website
Please Note: If you travel to India from the UK, transiting through Europe or the Middle East (and you have not been in a South American or African country in the previous week) a yellow fever vaccination certificate is not required.
Notes on the diseases mentioned above
spread through consumption of contaminated water and food. It would be unusual for travellers to contract cholera if they take basic precautions with food and water and maintain a good standard of hygiene.
Risk is higher during floods and after natural disasters, in areas with very poor sanitation and lack of clean drinking water.
Risk is highest for humanitarian aid workers; those working in refugee camps or slums; those caring for people with cholera.
- Diphtheria:  spread person to person through respiratory droplets. Risk is higher if mixing with locals in poor, overcrowded living conditions.
spread through consuming contaminated food and water or person to person through the faecal-oral route.
Risk is higher where personal hygiene and sanitation is poor.
Risk is highest for those with underlying medical conditions where there is increased risk of severe disease e.g. chronic liver/kidney disease; haemophiliacs; men who have sex with men; people who inject drugs.
spread through infected blood and blood products, contaminated needles and medical instruments and sexual intercourse.
Risk is higher for long stays, frequent travel and for children (exposed through cuts and scratches), those who may require medical treatment during travel.
Risk is highest for those with underlying medical conditions where there is increased risk of severe disease e.g. chronic liver/kidney disease; haemophiliacs; men who have sex with men; people who change partners frequently; people who inject drugs.
- Japanese Encephalitis:  spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. This mosquito breeds in rice paddies and mainly bites between dusk and dawn. Risk is highest for long stay travellers to rural areas, particularly if unable to avoid mosquito bites.
- Rabies:  spread through the saliva of infected animals (especially dogs, cats, bats and monkeys), usually through a bite, scratch or lick to broken skin. Risk is higher for those working or living in remote or rural areas (with no easy access to medical facilities), longer stay travellers, those planning on undertaking activities such as trekking, cycling or running in a 'high risk' country, those working with, or regularly handling animals or bats, as part of their job, and children. Even after receiving pre-travel rabies vaccine, urgent medical advice should be sought after any animal or bat bite.
- Tetanus:  spread through contamination of cuts, burns and wounds with tetanus spores. Spores are found in soil worldwide. A total of 5 doses of tetanus vaccine are recommended for life in the UK. Boosters are usually recommended in a country or situation where the correct treatment of an injury may not be readily available.
- Typhoid:  spread mainly through consumption of contaminated food and drink. Risk is higher where access to adequate sanitation and safe water is limited.
Malaria is a serious and sometimes fatal disease transmitted by mosquitoes.You cannot be vaccinated against malaria.
Malaria precautionsMalaria Map
- Malaria risk is present throughout the year. Risk is highest in north-eastern states of Meghalaya, Mizoram, district of Amini in Arunachal Pradesh, north and south Chhattisgarh, Orissa and the city of Mangalore. In central Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Tripura and Arunachal Pradesh risk is not high enough to warrant antimalarial tablets for most travellers, however, it may be considered for certain groups who may be at higher risk (see below under Low risk with additional advice).
- There is low to no risk in all other areas.
- Check with your doctor or nurse about suitable antimalarial tablets.
- See malaria map – additional information can be found by clicking on the Regional Information icon below the map.
- High risk areas: atovaquone/proguanil OR doxycycline OR mefloquine are usually advised.
- Low risk with additional advice: antimalarial tablets are not usually recommended, however, they can be considered for certain travellers who may be at higher risk e.g. longer stay in rural areas, visiting friends or relatives, those with medical conditions, immunosuppression or those without a spleen. Atovaquone/proguanil OR doxycycline OR mefloquine is advised for those at risk.
- Low to no risk: antimalarial tablets are not usually advised
- If you have been travelling in a malarious area and develop a fever seek medical attention promptly. Remember malaria can develop even up to one year after exposure.
- If travelling to an area remote from medical facilities, carrying standby emergency treatment for malaria may be considered.
Other Health Risks
Altitude and TravelThis country has either areas with high altitude (2400m or more) or/and areas with very high altitude (3658m or more). Travellers who may go into areas of high altitude should take care to avoid ill effects of being at altitude including Acute Mountain Sickness, a potentially life-threatening condition. For further information see Altitude and Travel.
Dengue FeverA viral illness that is transmitted to humans by mosquito bites. The mosquito that spreads dengue bites during the day and is more common in urban areas. Symptoms include fever, headache, severe joint, bone and muscular pain - hence its other name 'breakbone fever'. There is no vaccine and prevention is through avoidance of mosquito bites. For further information see Dengue Fever.
There is a high risk of exposure to coronavirus (COVID-19) in this country.
Please be aware that risk of COVID-19 in this country may change at short notice, and also consider your risk in any transit countries and from travelling itself.
You should consider:
- Is your journey really necessary?
- Are you at an increased risk of severe COVID-19?
- If you are at increased risk you should reconsider your travel plans and seek medical advice prior to making any decisions.
- To find out if you are at increased risk of severe COVID-19, see the FAQ’s
Polio Vaccine Requirement for India
There is no risk of polio in this country. However, proof of polio vaccination may be necessary if you are travelling to India from a country where polio is still found. Please discuss this with your travel healthcare practitioner.
Zika Virus Infection
India has been categorised as having a risk of Zika (ZIKV) virus transmission.
ZIKV is mainly spread through mosquito bites. The mosquito responsible most commonly bites during daylight hours and is abundant in urban settings. There is a low risk of sexual transmission.
The illness itself is usually mild but there is a link between infection during pregnancy and babies being born with birth defects. There is no vaccine currently available against ZIKV.
Advice for All Travellers
All travellers should practice strict mosquito bite avoidance at all times.
Do not travel without adequate travel insurance.
Seek pre-travel health advice from your health care provider 6-8 weeks in advance of travel.
For travel to Rajasthan:
- Pregnant women are advised to postpone non-essential travel.
For travel to India (except Rajasthan):
- Pregnant women are advised to consider postponing non-essential travel.
Those planning pregnancy, or where there is a risk of pregnancy, should avoid the risk of ZIKV in pregnancy and sexual transmission of ZIKV by the use of contraception and condoms during travel and for:
- 2 months afterwards if female
- 3 months afterwards if male
For further information, see Zika virus infection page.
- 05 Oct 2021 - Country Specific Risk of Coronavirus (COVID-19) (Update 39)
- 16 Sep 2021 - Update to Country Specific Hepatitis A Vaccine Recommendations
- 10 Sep 2021 - Country Specific Risk of Coronavirus (COVID-19) (Update 38)
- 07 Sep 2021 - Nipah virus in India (Kerala)