It’s finally here: holiday season! Time for family, friends, and festivities. (More than 100 million Americans traveled over the year-end holiday season last year.) It’s peak cold and flu season too. Check out these tips to help keep you from coughing, sneezing, and wheezing from now through New Year’s Eve:

  1. Plan ahead and get a flu shot. This is a good idea for just about anyone who may be traveling with you too. It’s never too late to protect yourself and your family.
  2. Keep your germs to yourself: cover your cough or sneeze, and wash your hands often. Lathering up with warm, soapy water for 20 seconds is a great way to avoid catching or spreading airborne upper respiratory infections such as colds. If soap and water aren’t available, you can use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  3. Get plenty of rest and drink lots of water. Even a 20-minute cat nap can do wonders for you. And make a habit of sipping water throughout your trip, especially if you’re flying or headed to a colder climate where dry, heated indoor air can dehydrate you.
  4. Eat when you can. Sometimes traveling can upset your typical routine, so you may have to go longer between meals than usual. To help combat getting “hangry” (when being hungry leads to being angry), keep small snacks nearby (Quicktip: Whole fruit such as apples and clementine oranges, and a handful of nuts such as almonds or walnuts are healthy options to curb cravings).
  5. Pack a homemade cold and flu travel kit: In addition to tissues and standard first-aid items, include a couple types of pain reliever/fever reducers along with basic over-the-counter medications such as decongestant, cough suppressant, throat lozenges, and antihistamine. You may want to avoid combination cold/flu medications so that you can take only what you need to relieve specific symptoms. Have questions about setting up the kit? Teladoc can help.
  6. Snuggle up with your own travel blanket and pillow. The ones airlines hand out may not be sanitary. And if traveling by car, you can cover up when you feel cold while everyone else is comfortable.

And most important: Don’t ignore potential warning signs such as fever, chills, sore throat, headache, nausea, body aches, or unusual fatigue. Contact Teladoc! We’re available by app, web, and phone 24/7 anywhere in the U.S. Our board-certified physicians can diagnose and treat your illness, and even prescribe medication when medically necessary. We wish you a happy and healthy holiday season. But if you get sick, even while away from home, you’re #CoveredWithTeladoc.


This portion of the Teladoc website occasionally offers health, fitness and nutritional information and is provided solely for educational purposes only. You cannot rely on any information provided here as a substitute for or replacement of professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Teladoc cannot assure that the information contained on this site always includes the most recent findings or developments with respect to the particular subject matter covered.

If you ever have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other health-care professional. Do not disregard, avoid or delay obtaining medical or health related advice from your health-care professional because of something you may have read on this site. The use of any information provided on this site is solely at your own risk.

If you are in the United States and think you are having a medical or health emergency, call your health care professional, or 911, immediately.