Summer fun often means traveling. Whether it’s a trip to Disney World or a few days of fun in the sun at the beach, summer is the perfect time to get away.

Unfortunately, summer vacation also means traveling in close quarters and exposure to extra and new types of germs. The last thing you want to bring along with you on vacation is a cold.

To make sure you’re not sidelined for your summer vacation, check out these tips for staying clean and healthy while traveling.  

Clean Your Car

Some of the germiest places in your car are not the ones you’d expect. While you’ll likely think to wipe off places like the steering wheel and door handle, you’d be surprised to discover that these are not the most germ laden places in your car.  

According to a study by CloroxPro, the germiest parts of your car are actually places like the front seat cup holder (I can only assume from all the spilled Starbucks!), dashboard air vent, driver side floor mats and trunk.

So before you load up and head off, give your car a thorough cleaning.

Use Alcohol Wipes

To prevent germs from ruining your vacation, bring alcohol wipes along for the ride. They’re really convenient for cleaning hands when soap and water isn’t an option. Whether you are in and out of Ubers and elevators or taking to the skies, you’ll want these wipes handy for a quick wash.

Speaking of taking to the skies, if an airplane is how you’re traveling, consider adding alcohol wipes to your carry-on. Airplanes often have quick turnarounds. Usually there is just enough time between flights for a quick touch-up (i.e. a vacuum and removal of trash from seat pockets). When you think of how many people will be on a plane each and every day, that feels a little, well, gross. You can just imagine how many germs are flying around in the cabin with you. When you first sit down, wipe down your seat tray, seatbelt and armrests. Then, use a fresh wipe for your hands.

And when you get to your hotel? Wipe down the light switches, door handles, remote control and other items that are frequently touched but unlikely part of housekeeping’s cleaning routine.

Take care of yourself.

The days leading up to a trip can be very busy. Between last minute projects at work, laundry, and packing the family, it’s easy to feel exhausted when departure time arrives. Avoid staying up too late. Traveling while sleep deprived leaves your immune system weakened and you vulnerable to illness. Make sure you plan in advance so you can get enough sleep before traveling.

Additionally, be sure to drink plenty of water before and during your trip. The high temperatures of summer and the low humidity on airplanes makes it easy to get dehydrated. This is especially true if you’re drinking alcohol. And if you choose to drink, don’t overindulge. Not only will this tax your body leaving you vulnerable to illness, hangovers can put quite a damper on vacation.

Pack Wisely

You may well be living out of a suitcase for a few days so be sure to pack wisely. Pack shoes away from your clothes. Better yet, put them in a plastic bag. This will not only keep germs from the bottom of your shoes off your clothes, it will also keep bad smells away. Put the bag to good use and fill it with dirty clothes during your trip. This will keep your clean clothes fresher. Plus, it makes laundry a breeze when you get home. Just empty the bag into your washing machine (minus the shoes of course). Lastly, don’t forget to pack hand sanitizer, vitamins and sunscreen.

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