If you’ve ever traveled internationally, you’ve likely heard the old admonition: “Don’t drink the water!”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the water warning is only true for certain parts of the globe, and Reddit user 5thEye took the time to compile the CDC’s international tap water drinking recommendations into one handy map.
The map shows broad swaths of the world — South America, Africa and nearly all of Asia — where drinking the tap water will probably give an American tourist a case of traveler’s diarrhea.
Responding to comments on Reddit, 5thEye claimed that the CDC used to offer more options beyond “safe” and “unsafe,” and that much of Eastern Europe used to be classified in this middle ground.
Rather than elaborate on each country’s particular water treatment standards, the CDC offers a general disclaimer for the “unsafe” countries online.
From Brazil’s entry:
Unclean food and water can cause travelers’ diarrhea and other diseases. Reduce your risk by sticking to safe food and water habits.
Tap or well water
Ice made with tap or well water
Drinks made with tap or well water (such as reconstituted juice)
On the other hand, Western Europe, Japan and South Korea and a few other nations, including Israel, Australia and Brunei, are labeled safe for Americans.
Here’s what the CDC says about France: “Food and water standards in France are similar to those in the United States. Most travelers do not need to take special food or water precautions beyond what they normally do at home.”
What’s one to do when traveling to a red country?
“When I was in Mexico, we only had alcohol, bottled water, and coffee,” 5thEye wrote. “Mostly alcohol.”
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