Get a full list of the vaccines you need for India, and learn about the risk of diseases and the best ways to protect yourself while away.

Vaccinations for
India

India is a large country with a varied climate. Disease risks for travellers depend on region and activities, however, there is a risk of mosquito- and water-borne diseases present throughout the country. Quality medical care is available in big cities, but maybe be more difficult to access in rural areas.


01. What vaccinations do I need for India?

The following list of vaccines are the official recommendations for travel to India. Which vaccines you need will depend on a variety of factors, including your medical history and the details of your trip.

Book an appointment online to get vaccinated at your local pharmacy. If you are unsure as to which vaccinations you require, book a phone consultation with one of our medical advisors, who will create a vaccine plan based on your needs.

Most travellers

Diphtheria, tetanus and polio

Anytime before arrival

Typhoid

2 weeks before arrival

Hepatitis A

Anytime before arrival

Some travellers

Rabies

3 weeks before arrival*

Japanese encephalitis

2 weeks before arrival*

Hepatitis B

4 weeks before arrival*

Cholera

2 weeks before arrival

02. Malaria

Is there a risk of malaria in India?

There is a low risk of malaria in most of India. There is a higher risk of malaria in some states in the northeast of the country.

Even if the area of India you intend to travel to has a low risk of malaria, there is always a possibility of outbreaks in most of the country. It is therefore important to stay alert to risks and avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.

Read more

03. Other health risks

All travellers going to India are exposed to food- and water-related risks. Illnesses such as travellers diarrhoea, typhoid, hepatitis A and cholera can be transmitted through contaminated food and water.

While some diseases can be prevented with a vaccine, other diseases which are prevalent in India cannot. This is especially true for mosquito-borne diseases, which can sometimes cause serious complications. There is a risk of Zika, dengue and Chinkungunya transmission in India.

COVID-19

Can I travel to India?

The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically reduced international travel. Many borders around the world remain closed and travel restrictions are sometimes imposed without notice.

The UK government strongly advises against all non-essential international travel. There is currently a 10-day mandatory quarantine for anyone returning to the UK.

When will I be able to travel to India?

It is difficult to know when it will be safe to travel to India. Find out more about what needs to happen before you can travel again.

What are the travel restrictions in India?

There is currently mandatory paid testing for all travellers arriving in India. Those who test positive will be isolated at an institutional facility, and those who test negative must undergo a mandatory quarantine for seven days at a designated hotel. They must then quarantine for a further seven days at home.

Zika

Is there a risk of Zika in India?

A recent outbreak in Rajasthan means that pregnant women, and women who are planning on getting pregnant (6 months after leaving) are advised against non-essential travel to this state, as there is a link between infection during pregnancy and babies being born with birth defects.

There has been recorded transmission of Zika in some parts of India. The country is currently categorised as having a moderate risk of Zika virus transmission.

There is no vaccine or medication currently available for prevention against Zika. Pregnant women should consider waiting until after pregnancy to travel to India.

Read more

Dengue

Is there a risk of dengue in India?

There is a risk of dengue in India. The risk is higher in towns, cities and the surrounding areas.

The risk is present year-round in southern areas, and from April to November in northern states.

Read more

04. Risk areas

Depending on the activities of travellers and length of stay, the following areas can carry the risk of certain diseases. Book a free consultation for specific advice on which diseases you may be at risk of during your travels.

Urban areas

There is a risk of dengue in all areas of India. Urban centers, towns and the surrounding areas are of particularly high risk.

Malaria has been reported in Kolkata, Mumbai and New Delhi. Antimalarials are not necessarily recommended for these destinations, so it is important for travellers to remain vigilant and avoid getting bitten by mosquitoes.

Goa

There is generally a low risk of malaria in Goa. Dengue is also present in the state. Risk of transmission from both diseases is higher during the monsoon season from June to September. Risk of dengue is higher in urban areas.

Kerala

There is a very low risk of malaria in Kerala. Dengue is present in the state, and travellers should be particularly vigilant in the monsoon season from June to September.

Rajasthan

There has been a recent outbreak of Zika in Jaipur, Rajasthan. Pregnant women are advised to avoid travel to the state until after pregnancy. There is a low risk of malaria and dengue in the state, although travellers should be careful during the monsoon months from June to September.

05. Precautions

Mosquitoes

There are mosquito-borne diseases present in India which cannot be prevented by a vaccine or medication, which means that it is essential that you take the right precautions to avoid getting bitten during your stay.

Read more

Food and water

Be aware that if you are visiting friends or relatives in India or are a long-stay traveller, you should take extra care as you are at increased risk of consuming contaminated food and drinks.

Read more

06. Healthcare in India

Is healthcare in India good?

The standard of private healthcare in India is good in big cities, however, standards are lower in rural areas and there are fewer private clinics.

It is essential that you get health insurance for your trip to India.

Useful contacts

Local emergency medical services For emergencies needing medical assistance, dial +91 112. This general emergency hotline will connect you to all and any necessary assistance. There is also a 112 smartphone application available for download.

Medical facilities and practitioners In the case that you may get ill while in India, it is important to have the relevant information readily available to find reputable medical help quickly. Here is a downloadable list of medical facilities and practitioners in India.

British Deputy High Commission Ahmedabad The British Deputy High Commission Ahmedabad can provide assistance while you are there. You can reach them 24 hours a day by calling +91 (11) 2419 2100.

Useful regional contacts:

British Deputy High Commission Bengaluru +91 (11) 2419 2100 (reachable 24 hours a day for emergencies)

British Deputy High Commission Chandigarh +91 11 2419 2100

British Deputy High Commission Chennai +91 (11) 2419 2100 (reachable 24 hours a day for emergencies)

British Deputy High Commission Hyderabad +91 (11) 2419 2100 (reachable 24 hours a day for emergencies)

British Deputy High Commission Kolkata +91 (11) 2419 2100 (reachable 24 hours a day for emergencies)

British Deputy High Commission Mumbai +91 (22) 66502222

British High Commission New Delhi +91 (11) 2419 2100 (reachable 24 hours a day)

British Nationals Assistance Office Goa +91 22 6650 2200

07. Book your travel vaccinations

If you already know which vaccinations you need, you can book a vaccination appointment at your local pharmacy.

If you would like to discuss your specific requirements with a medical advisor, book a free telephone consultation. A Practio nurse will give an individual assessment of your needs and recommend a suitable vaccination programme.

08. Checklist for your trip to India

  • Check if you need vaccinations Book an appointment at your local pharmacy at least 6 to 8 weeks before travel to get vaccinated

  • Mosquito protection Ensure you have everything you need to minimise your chance of mosquito bites while in India, including DEET insect repellent

  • Travel vaccination certificate Check if the travel vaccination certificate is required upon entry in India, as the requirements can change

  • Travel insurance If you become ill in India and did not receive the right vaccinations before you left, your travel insurance can become void. So, make sure to check before you leave

  • Note useful contact numbers Make a list of contacts to take with you to India, as these can be helpful in case of an emergency

Content reviewed by

Fuad Hussain, Pharmacist Prescriber
16 February 2021

Related articles

How to prevent food and waterborne diseases

Do you often get diarrhoea while travelling? You may have had contaminated food or water, which can also cause food- and waterborne diseases.

Tips for prevention of Zika virus

Zika can’t be prevented with a vaccine, so it’s important that you practice Zika virus prevention while abroad. Don't know how? Let us help you!