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Food and Water Safety

Unclean food and water can cause travelers’ diarrhea and other diseases. Travelers to developing countries are especially at risk. Reduce your risk by sticking to safe food and water habits.



  • Food that is cooked and served hot
  • Hard-cooked eggs
  • Fruits and vegetables you have washed in clean water or peeled yourself
  • Pasteurized dairy products
salad with a line through it Don't eat salad

Don't Eat

  • Food served at room temperature
  • Food from street vendors
  • Raw or soft-cooked (runny) eggs
  • Raw or undercooked (rare) meat or fish
  • Unwashed or unpeeled raw fruits and vegetables
  • Condiments (such as salsa) made with fresh ingredients
  • Salads
  • Flavored ice or popsicles
  • Unpasteurized dairy products
  • ”Bushmeat” (monkeys, bats, or other wild game)



  • Water, sodas, or sports drinks that are bottled and sealed (carbonated is safer)
  • Water that has been disinfected (boiled, filtered, treated)
  • Ice made with bottled or disinfected water
  • Hot coffee or tea
  • Pasteurized milk

Don't Drink

glass of ice water with a line through it Don't drink tap water
  • Tap or well water
  • Fountain drinks
  • Ice made with tap or well water
  • Drinks made with tap or well water (such as reconstituted juice)
  • Unpasteurized milk

Bathing and Swimming

Unclean water can also make you sick if you swallow or inhale it while bathing, showering, or swimming. Try not to get any water in your nose or mouth. In some areas, tap water may not even be safe for brushing your teeth, and you should use bottled water. People who are elderly or have weakened immune systems might want to stay away from areas where there is a lot of steam and water vapor that can be inhaled, such as showers and hot tubs

Food and Water Safety Infographics

Infographic - food water what's safer and what's not Infographic:
What's Safer and What's Not

Food and Beverage Safety for the International Traveler: What's Safer and What's Not

Risky vs. Safer: Food & Drink Choices while Traveling

Food and Water Safety: What to Know Before You Go!