The popular misconception is that yellow fever vaccination is required to travel to South America or Africa. In reality, one requires it when returning to India, else you may be subjected to being quarantined for upto 2 weeks to avoid spreading it further (in case you contract it).
Yellow fever vaccine is a vaccine that protects against yellow fever. Yellow fever is a viral infection that occurs in Africa and South America. Most people begin to develop immunity within ten days and 99% are protected within one month of vaccination and this appears to be lifelong. – Wikipedia
Where to get it – locally / abroad
In Mumbai, 3 centres provide the vaccine currently:
1. Sir JJ Group of Hospitals
2. Airport Health Organisation [view on map]
3. A centre in Colaba (? uncertain. Please leave a comment if you know more about this).
A quick search on Twitter will probably dishearten you about the procedure to get the vaccine locally, so here’s my story and how i did NOT get it before leaving for my South America trip and got it in Brazil instead… (NOT advocating this, since the vaccine typically takes 10 days to take into effect).
Getting my yellow fever vaccination in Rio de Janeiro!
I had checked with a friend who shuttles India and Brazil about the possibility of getting the vaccine in Brazil, and he had advised me that it would be best to get it in Sao Paulo / Rio de Janeiro simply because it would be faster and one doesn’t really have to worry if not venturing into the Amazon rainforest (i wasn’t).
So when i reached Rio, i mentioned this to my CouchSurfing host Rafael who happily volunteered to take me to his local ‘prefeitura’ where vaccinations are provided to anyone for free. It took me literally 2 minutes to get the vaccine and although i didn’t get the famous yellow certificate, they issued me a vaccination certificate written in Portuguese with the vaccine valid for the next 10 years! How i convinced the immigration officers in Mumbai about its authenticity is another story for another time 😉
Photo Credits / Source: GlobalX. Used under Creative Commons License.
Leading an experimental life as a digital nomad, I started traveling in 2007 while choosing to shuttle between Goa and Mumbai as 'home'. An epic life-changing trip to South America an year later gave birth to this blog, Exotic Gringo.