Vaccination Information Service

Whom do you trust, nature or man?



Travel vaccinations

Your right of refusal

Travellers are usually incorrectly informed that they need vaccines for overseas travel. There are only a few countries where there is a theoretical requirement for vaccination certificates, and even then you can get around this.

Apart from Saudi Arabia which theoretically requires meningococcal C vaccination for entry (and even then it may be possible to get an exemption), the only vaccine for which there are theoretical requirements in some situations when entering some countries is the yellow fever vaccine.

A few countries in South America, namely Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Brazil are said to have yellow fever infected areas, and some publications state that these countries require yellow fever vaccination certificates if you are coming from infected area (note that the word there is "area", not "country"). 

However, all the consulates/embassies for Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia have confirmed that a yellow fever vaccination certificate is not in fact required for travel to any of these countries or between them. Travellers to these countries have also reported after their return that they were never asked to produce such a certificate when entering these countries.

There are a few, limited, countries in Africa where the issue of a yellow fever vaccination certificate can be an issue that has to be dealt with, but it is still possible to get an exemption.

If you are in Australia, contact us on (02) 9144 6625 for further assistance if you think after reading all of the above you need to get an exemption in your situation in order to enter a particular country.

There is also theoretically a requirement that if you are entering Australia (not New Zealand, UK, US, Canada, Europe, etc), then you need a yellow fever vaccination certificate "upon entry back into Australia within 6 days of having been in an infected area", but even this is not strictly correct in practice. If you do not have such a certificate on arrival in Australia from such an area you will be interviewed by the AQIS who will still permit you to enter on certain easy-to-fulfill conditions. See the following link for more details:
Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.



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