The Ultimate Street Food Survival Guide – 12 Ways to Avoid Getting Sick!

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Street food tends to be approached cautiously. One question that many ask is, “Is the food safe?” Or another variation, “What if eating street food makes me sick?”

Eating locally and safely on the street might seem too risky for some. And while there is no guarantee against getting sick, local foods like street food can be safe to enjoy. You just need to take the proper precautions. 

On our quest for authentic food, we’ve had numerous meals on the streets. From street carts in Bangkok to the markets of Cambodia, we’ve pushed ourselves to go beyond our comfort zones. 

After about 8 years of hunting down authentic food specialties in 45 countries and 250+ food cities, we’ve managed to keep our stomach happy.

If you are looking to avoid getting sick on the road, here are our top 12 tips for eating street food safely.

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Can I Eat Street Food?

Street Food Making Eating On The Street by Authentic Food Quest
Discover hidden gems eating street food

You can absolutely eat street food. In fact, we highly recommend it!

Food from sidewalk vendors, colorful markets, and push carts is one of the best ways to “taste” the local culture. 

Eating street food adds adventure to your meals. The excitement and trepidation of trying foods and flavors you’ve never experienced before. 

Street food, a concept with many definitions, is inclusive of a wide range of foods and beverages sold and sometimes prepared in public places, most notably on the streets.  

Street food is not only delicious, but it’s also often cheap, too. Experiencing a city through street food is a great way to explore the area. 

Popular in Asia, massive in America, and growing in Europe, here’s how to eat what locals eat and best navigate the street eats on your travels.

AUTHENTIC FOOD QUEST TIP: Make your culinary travels worry-free! With the right travel insurance, you’ll enjoy a delicious experience. From medical emergencies, flight cancelations, car rental protection, or tour cancelations, a good travel insurance has got you covered. Check out our travel insurance review for food lovers to get started.

Top Tips on How to Eat Street Food Safely While Traveling

1. Have Street Food Hot at the Local Markets

Sathorn Market Thai Curry Vendor Bangkok Markets Authentic Food Quest
Food vendor selling Thai curries at Sathorn market, Bangkok

One of the best ways to sample local cuisine is at the farmer’s market. For some, this can be an adjustment as the hygiene standards in some countries might not be the same as what you are used to at home. 

Visit when the local markets are busy and let the delicious aromas of food tempt you. However, be cautious about what you order. One general rule we recommend is to stick to hot food.

By eating hot, fully-cooked food, you have a much better chance of avoiding food poisoning. However, you can still eat food that isn’t cooked – for example, fresh fruit. 

At the local markets, If you’re curious about some unique local fruits, ask the vendor about them – where they come from and how they grow.

As you show interest and curiosity, most likely, the food stall vendor will cut up samples for you to try. 

One important tip is to choose a fruit that need to be peeled. Avoid any samples that have been sitting out.

RELATED: How to Find Authentic Food on Your Travels: Your 10-Step Guide

2. Pack Activated Charcoal

Activated Charcoal Eating Street Food by Authentic Food Quest
Must-have pills which neutralize poisons

Ever since we discovered Activated Charcoal, these pills have become an essential part of our packing list.

Activated charcoal is a natural treatment that is used around the world as an antidote for hundreds of poisons. 

It works by absorbing poisons and toxins in the digestive tract by binding them together, thereby reducing their potency. 

There is a story told that in 1813, a French chemist named Michel Bertrand swallowed 5 grams of arsenic trioxide, which was 150 times the lethal dose. 

He had mixed it with activated carbon beforehand and did not experience any nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cramping, burning in the mouth or throat, collapse, or death. 

In a dramatic and dangerous way, he publicly demonstrated charcoal’s incredible ability to neutralize poison.

We carry Activated Charcoal pills and also use them preventatively before meals. Sometimes, if something is not feeling right after eating, taking two pills afterward helps calm the stomach.

Activated Charcoal, in our opinion, is a must-pack item for any food traveler.

RELATED: 10 Simple Ways To Prepare Your Stomach For Travel

3. Wash Hands and Carry Hand Sanitizer

Hand Sanitizer eat local street safely by Authentic Food Quest
Clean your hands on the go with hand sanitizers

Washing your hands before eating might be second nature to you. And if it is not, we strongly encourage it. 

But what do you do when there are no bathrooms around to wash your hands?

The best solution is to keep hand sanitizer with you at all times. With a couple of drops of gel, you can easily clean your hands on the go. 

And, with the lack of napkins in most countries, hand sanitizer serves a second purpose: their use replaces napkins when needed.

This easy-to-carry and handy item goes a long way to keep you eating on the street safely.

READ MORE: 74 Street Food Quotes To Inspire The Adventurous Eater in You

4.  Look into the Kitchen on the Streets

Street Stall Pho Ga Hanoi Pho in Vietnam by Authentic food quest
Waiting eagerly for pho ga or chicken pho in Hanoi, Vietnam

With street food, unlike restaurants, the kitchen is right in front of you. This is the perfect moment to check out the hygiene levels of the food cart.

How is the food prepared by the street vendors? How is it being cooked? Does the oil look golden and fresh, or is it old and dark? Do the cooking utensils look clean?

If anything looks suspicious, don’t take the risk of food poisoning. Move on to the next street vendor or cart.

RELATED: How To Prevent Traveler’s Diarrhea: Travelan Review And Its Alternative

5. Eat Local and Safely at Popular Vendors with Elderly and Children 

dona pochita street cart Grilling Anticuchos a popular peru street food in Lima by Authentic Food Quest
Eating street food in Peru following the long lines and where children eat

On your hunt for delicious street food, make sure it’s popular with the local people.

Check the lines at popular food vendors. 

Are there long lines and lot’s of people waiting to be served? Is there a high turnover of dishes?

Even better, are there any elderly people and children eating food there? If so, that’s a good sign and often an indication of food safety. No mother will feed her child unsanitary food. 

And grandmas and grandpas – they have been around the block. You’ll want to try the street food stalls that they most frequent. 

You can trust them to know what is good. 

6. Money and Food Don’t Mix Well 

Money Food eat local street safely by Authentic Food Quest
Vendor wearing gloves to handle food in Chiang Mai, Thailand

With market or street food vendors, try and avoid the ones where the person handling the money is the same person cooking the food. 

In South America, for example, we ate at food stalls where there was a dedicated person cooking the meals and another person handling the money.

If this is not the case, watch and make sure that the person is cleaning their hands in between cooking the food and handling the money.

In Thailand, many vendors wear gloves to handle the food and then remove them to receive payment. But this is not always the case in other countries.

Remember, germs get transmitted by dirty bills and coins. If you’re in doubt, keep walking.

7. Watch the Utensils and Glasses 

Water Cups eat local street safely by Authentic Food Quest
Safer to drink water using straws in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Utensils and glasses are another area to watch out for when you eat on the street. Make sure to wipe utensils and glasses before using them. 

If you can, carry your own personal utensils with you. We personally always have our Sporks with us. 

These spoon/fork combos have come in handy when trying something at street food stalls or at the local market. They’ve been a lifesaver when the utensils don’t look clean.

The same is also true when it comes to drinking water. In Vietnam, for instance, we noticed that some local food joints would reuse the water glasses without washing them. 

If you are going to use the cups, make sure you use the straws that are available. Or better yet, carry your own bamboo straws

Another alternative is to carry your own water bottle or buy a bottle of water instead.

RELATED: How to Drink Water in Southeast Asia: 15 Helpful Tips To Stay Safe

8. Use a Water Filtration Bottle 

Grayl Gifts for food travelers by Authentic Food Quest
Keeping safe with Grayl Water bottle, Thailand

Having clean water for your travels is paramount. Not all cities and towns have potable water. 

To be safe, it’s better to be prepared with your own water purifier and filtration system.

We use GRAYL water bottles for purifying and filtering water. In less than one minute, you can filter any water deemed non-potable. 

The bottles have a slick design, are lightweight, and the filters are changed infrequently, about every 2 to 3 months. 

LifeStraw Go water bottle is another brand we were introduced to by other travelers.

The water bottle has a filtration system that protects against bacteria, parasites, chlorine, and organic chemical matter such as pesticides and herbicides. 

One aspect we love about LifeStraw is that it gives back. When you purchase one LifeStraw bottle, one child gets one year of clean water.

No matter how you choose to drink safely on your travels, be sure to carry your own water purifier and filtration system to stay safe. 

With no additional plastic water bottles to buy, you’ll also be doing good for the environment.

9. Get Travel Insurance 

Travel Insurance by Authentic Food Quest
Keep your travel insurance information handy

In our opinion, travel insurance is well worth the effort and the dollar amount. 

Like car insurance, you never know just when it will come in handy.

When eating street foods, even if you take all the necessary precautions, you may still get gastrointestinal troubles. 

In this case, having travel insurance can provide you with ease of mind, knowing that if you end up sick, you’ll be able to receive treatment in whichever country you find yourself in. 

One important tip to keep in mind is to also consider dental insurance. Many travel insurance companies also provide dental insurance, so read the fine print or ask about it.

Accidents could occur when eating fruits with seeds or any local food for that matter.

With travel insurance, you’ll have peace of mind regardless of the situation.

RELATED: Check out our SafetyWing review for a detailed review of the travel insurance they provide

10. Make Friends with Spices 

Spices eat local street safely by Authentic Food Quest
Vendor selling ginger, chili, garlic and limes in Hanoi, Vietnam

In many countries around the world, spices and fresh herbs feature prominently in the local cuisine.

In addition to adding rich flavors and tastes to local specialties, many herbs are also used to treat common ailments while promoting general health.

Garlic is a typical ingredient used in many street foods. Beyond adding depth and flavors, garlic also has many health benefits.

Garlic destroys harmful bacteria present in the intestines and clears up many intestinal problems, including diarrhea. 

Ginger root used abundantly in Southeast Asian dishes is one of the oldest Chinese medicinal foods.

Ginger is often taken for calming an upset stomach and to treat nausea and motion sickness. 

Beyond healing the stomach, ginger is said to have many more benefits, including lowering the risk of cancer, helping lower cholesterol, and promoting weight loss. 

There are many other herbs and spices that locals eat to avoid or prevent food poisoning. 

Eat the vegetables, spices, and herbs that are found in local dishes and you’ll be able to enjoy your street eats safely.

RELATED: Food Travel Near And Far: 10 Tips To Become A Great Food Traveler

11. Be Wary of Ice Contamination in Your Drinks 

Ice Glasses eat local street safely by Authentic Food Quest
Clean ice in coolers with clean glasses in Chiang Mai, Thailand

While access to safe tap water can be an issue while traveling, you also want to be cautious about contamination in juices and iced drinks.

It goes without saying that when the local water is not potable, then you’ll need to avoid ice as well. 

However, on our travels, we’ve been pleasantly surprised to see ice made from filtered water distributed widely in cities. 

For example, in Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam, we would see ice trucks delivering huge blocks of ice to restaurants and local vendors in the mornings.

Even though you may have to pay extra for it, it’s worth the peace of mind knowing the ice is safe. 

However, if you are in smaller towns or have any doubts about the quality of the drinking water, steer clear of ice and iced drinks.

12. Get Vaccinated Before You Travel

Claire Eating Street Food by Authentic Food Quest
Claire gets vaccinated while in Italy

In developing countries where sanitation conditions are poor, you can be at risk of Hepatitis A, Typhoid, and Paratyphoid Fever.

When it comes to enjoying street food, vaccination can provide peace of mind, keeping you safe from the dangers of contaminated food and water. 

Depending on where you are traveling to and the length of time you will be away, you may want to consider getting vaccinated. 

In our case, for our South America and Southeast Asia travels, we got Typhoid and Hepatitis A shots. 

We’ve since renewed the two shots and we are up to date with DPT and Hepatitis B vaccination shots.

To fully enjoy eating street food without getting sick, having up-to-date vaccinations makes the experience more enjoyable.

For added precaution before you travel, please consult with your doctor or medical professionals. 

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In Summary

At Authentic Food Quest, we strongly believe that traveling through local food is the best way to get to know a culture and place. 

Street food culture is so ingrained in countries around the world. And without eating the local food on one’s travels, you would be missing out on a unique perspective of the destination.

Connecting with the local people over delicious street foods has helped anchor us even deeper into the various local cultures. 

We’ve connected deeply while sitting together and eating the local specialties.

Armed with these tips, we are confident that you will be able to eat local and safely on the streets. 

Safe travels, and explore local flavors!

What are your tips for eating street food safely? Please let us know in the comments below.

Savor The Adventure!

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113 Comments on “The Ultimate Street Food Survival Guide – 12 Ways to Avoid Getting Sick!”

  1. I used to eat street food literally everywhere on the planet. It is cheap, tasty and fun. Even I rarely got illness due to these food where my family and friends used to complain of diarrhea, stomach problems etc. But too much of intake of such foods can result in illness a bit later in life. Anyways I appreciate you finding the time and energy to put this content together.

    Reply
    • That’s an interesting perspective that street food can cause illness later in life. Where does that come from? Many street food stalls and vendors, especially in Southeast Asia are much older and they seem to either cook or enjoy street food, and appear to be in good health. Don’t let fear stop you from enjoying good street food, following the tips provided 🙂 Cheers, Robert

      Reply
  2. I’m a sucker for street food! Great tip about going when the market is busy. That way you know that the food is going to be fresh. My husband got hit with amoebas one time after eating street food at the end of the day (as the vendor was closing down for the day).

    Reply
    • Street food is the best, but you do need to watch the environment closely. So sorry to hear about your husband and the amoebas. End of day or end of lunch period is never a good idea. Go early, eat when the locals are eating and you’ll be better off. Carrying some activated charcoal on your next travels and you’ll be safer 🙂

      Reply
  3. I must admit, I’m definitely sceptical of street food but I agree with you, it’s the best way to “taste” the local culture. Wearing gloves is definitely important for me when somebody is handling food and money! Great to know about Activated Charcoal and ginger 🙂

    Reply
    • Completely understand your hesitation Lisa about street food. As long as you are weary of your surroundings and you apply these tips, you’ll be good to go 🙂 Activated charcoal and ginger are two great preventative items to have with you. Cheers.

      Reply
  4. I love eating street food, it is just sooooo tasty! Ironically I think the only times I got sick travelling was at a ‘proper’ restaurant and after buying some packet ham, so eating fresh street food is way better in my experience! I hadn’t heard of activated charcoal before, I need to get me some of that!

    Reply
    • That’s really interesting Claire. There is no “safe” space for food – be it on the street or in a “proper” restaurant. If you apply these tips, you’ll likely enjoy your food safely no matter where you choose to eat. Having activated charcoal, though is great for peace of mind 🙂 Cheers.

      Reply
  5. What fantastic tips – I was really happy to hear about activated charcoal, and have ordered some as it’s always nice to have that safety net. Such a great tip about the food handling / money handling – we learnt about this at a café I worked in, so always had to take turns at the till so as to not cross contaminate!

    Reply
    • Perfect, Hannah. So glad you enjoyed the article and the tips. You’ll not regret having the Activated Charcoal with you. It will provide the peace of mind you need on your travels. Separating the money from the food is critical to avoid contamination. Unfortunately, it is not always practiced. Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply
  6. I really believe in the “healing” property of charcoals. My officemate back in college wanted to suicide by taking expired pain dozens of pills. I found her almost unconscious and brought her to the hospital. The nurse quickly gave her a charcoal-based liquid to drink which taste so bad she said she don’t want to do it anymore more. I never thought there’s actually a version of this for food poison matters!

    Reply
    • Wow, so sad to hear about your officemate in college. That is truly the power of activated charcoal. Yes, there is a version you can use and it does come in handy when you’ve eaten something questionable. Thanks for sharing that story.

      Reply
  7. I have always been a bit wary of eating street food and (I havent been to thailand) yet but I head a lot of people eating street food here and have come away with different views. Some says it safe, some not. But I am still willing to give this a try. Havent really done street food before..dont get much of it in London.

    Reply
  8. Thanks for this blog post. We often are worried about eating street food. Your tips are great guides. I would never have thought to look for places where children and older people are eating. Also a good tip to look for a separation between the money people and the cooks! I will definitely be looking to buy activated charcoal before our next trip to SE Asia. We are big believers in ginger and ate it copiously when we visited Asia this year. Thanks for some new info.

    Reply
    • You are most welcome, Linda. Happy you picked up new tips and resources like activated charcoal before your next SE Asia trip. Looking for children and the elderly is our biggest tip when selecting where to eat local. Love ginger and it’s great to eat it all around in Southeast Asia. Safe travels on your next travels and eat local, and safely. Cheers.

      Reply
  9. This is such a great guide to eating local food safely! I honestly wouldn’t have thought of half of these so I am really glad I read this. Can’t wait to use these tips to eat all the yummy street food in the future!

    Reply
  10. Great guide! I always try to grab some street food anywhere I go for the full experience. Being from New York (aka land of hot dog stands and halal carts), if it’s cheap and easy, it’s for me. Luckily, most places I’ve visited have had better street food options.

    Reply
  11. Thanks for bringing this to my attention! I wouldn’t have even thought about checking conditions like these when eating street food. Your advice can apply to traveling to any country! Thanks!

    Reply
  12. This is my FAVOURITE post of the whole week!!!!!! Seriously. I love street food, and is something I actively seek on every adventure. Vietnam is up there with my favourite places in the world for street food; as is Sri Lanka. These tips are invaluable! I am ALSO a huge Spork promoter. I carry mine with me everywhere, even in the city I live in just to cut back on waste and sure maybe even contamination. Might I suggest you look into the titanium version? I broke so many plastic ones that I bit the bullet and bought one – I’ve never looked back 🙂

    Reply
  13. Such a useful guide! I remember these tips from my school days. Growing up in India and eating street food was delicious and tempting
    Now I might think twice before eating!

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  14. Could not have read this at a better time as we have just booked a trip to South East Asia and it will be the first time ever for us to try street food! These tips are amazing – I’d no idea about activated charcoal and I LOVE ginger (I even drink ginger tea daily) so this is reassuring to know! Great advice, I’ve bookmarked this for our trip next year!

    Reply
  15. Awesome tips here!!
    I usually go for street food too when on vacation and always stick to these rules.
    I also stare for a while to see if these vendors are scratching there body parts. Because that is also very un hygienic.
    Thanks for sharing

    Reply
  16. We absolutely love street food and will seek it out usually rather than eat on our hotel. Most of the time the food is tastier and less likely to get you sick. Plus its cheaper and you’re supporting someone local. You give great suggestions to keep yourself safe, especially watching out for children and the elderly. We tent to try and eat places that are packed with locals.

    Reply
  17. Is it strange that I’ve never eaten from a food truck before? I’ve been terrified to do so since my dad got sick one day from eating a hot dog from stand. I think these tips will come in handy for a friend who is traveling to NY this week. She said she’d like to try their famous hot dog trucks.

    Reply
  18. I love all of your tips. I’ll admit, while I have eaten from food trucks and street vendors all over the USA, I was skeptical abotu it in other countries. Love your tips to help ease my worries

    Reply
    • Great point Mary, there is no reason to believe that street food in the U.S. is safer than street food in other countries. What’s most important is apply these tips and being on the lookout for safe and clean trucks/vendors. Don’t hesitate to eat on the street on your next trip. Cheers.

      Reply
  19. I like the idea of trying authentic foods from street vendors, but making sure it is all ok to eat is important. I never thought to take charcoal pills before trying new foods. That is such a good preventative measure.

    Reply
  20. We have traveled all over the worlds, Asia, Europe, South American and North America. I will say, the only place we have been sick from street food is the USA LOL! Asia street food is SOO delicious !! some of the best food I have ever eaten.

    Reply
  21. I love eating street food whenever I can while traveling. These tips are spot on. I had an incredibly difficult time convincing a friend I was traveling with in Morocco not to order salads and uncooked vegetables. As tempting as they are, a quick way to get sick.

    Reply
  22. We don’t drink local water only bottled water. We bring our own plastic eating utensils and napkins. Never eat spicy food or food that smells questionable.

    Reply
  23. Foods that are part of daily living to certain culture, region, tradition, and religion are referred to authentic food.
    There is a website that connects authentic cuisines throughout the world. You can taste the authentic cuisines from people who practice it in their day to day life.

    https://www.cultatrad.com

    Reply
  24. That is among the most useful things I have read lately. I am always afraid to eat street food especially in Asian countries but your advice makes me more comfortable now. I had no idea about the Activated Charcoal. I will buy some from Amazon. Great tips!

    Reply
    • Awesome to hear that you really enjoyed the article.Yes, taking Activated Charcoal does help keep you protected while traveling. Not to mention the peace of mind it provides. Highly recommend..and no need to fear the street food in Asia 🙂

      Reply
  25. Very useful tips! Street food is a big part of a country’s culture and it would be a pity to miss it. In my country we say for tip #1 “fried, boiled or peeled”. When out of “western countries I never never drink drinks with ice cubes and I skip salads and ice creams. The worst part is no salads, my stomach misses them 🙁

    Reply
    • Great tip Elisa and eating cooked street food is key to staying healthy. Agree with missing salads. We end up eating a lot more fruits and make tomato and cucumber salads instead. Sometimes, we also buy fresh salad and make sure to wash it well where we are staying. Most often though is tomato and cucumber salads. Give that a shot on your next trip!!

      Reply
  26. All of these great street food photos and tips have my mouth watering. I love the advice you’ve shared on how to keep healthy while travelling on the road. The tip about eating at spots where kids and elderly do too is particularly useful! I’ll keep these tips handy for our journeys in Asia.

    Reply
    • Perfect Claudia, so glad you got many useful tips from the article. Eating where the locals eat and in particular where there are kids and elderly helps. Hold on to the article for your Asia trip and feel free to reach out with any questions 🙂

      Reply
  27. Hi Claire,

    Brilliant post! I live by all these rules. I even noted the money/food thing not mixing, although early during my travels I was not as aware of this truth. Getting sick as heck a few times made me more observant. See how folks prepare food and present food. Example; we always drink from the chilled water cups with straws at our Buddhist veggie haunt in Chiang Mai, just like your image up top. We also enjoy shakes at stands where vendors clean out the blender after every shake. Some do not, which leads to some serious bloating and belching due to those 3rd world little nasties growing in hot, humid climes, in the blender.

    Ryan

    Reply
    • You are right Ryan, we need to be super vigilant when it comes to eating on the street. Blenders indeed can carry so many germs. Keeping a watchful eye, fro the food, to the water and drinks makes all the difference. Always welcome your feedback Thanks again!

      Reply
  28. Such amazing advise on this post!! I completely agree that street food can be safe, but its always good to take preautions like the ones that you mentioned like peeling the fruit and not eating the samples that have been left outside. That being said, I am originally from Bolivia and have gotten sick multiple times from street food so like you said, always check and look around the kitchen area.

    Reply
  29. Very good tips. I follow most of these while traveling or whenever eat street food in my city. Carrying activated charcoal tablets is a very good one. Will pack this in my essentials travel pouch.

    Reply
  30. These are all fantastic tips and I use a lot of these but now I need to start using activated charcoal, what a great idea! Thanks for sharing these tips.

    Reply
  31. Great tips here. I havent really tried the street food culture in Asia yet but I should be very soon when I explore places like Vietnam, Thailand etc. I wouldnt eat bugs to be honest (hear a lot of that), but noodles etc, I would. 🙂 One for cleaniness me. 🙂

    Reply
  32. Great post! I love eating street food, but now that I travel with my kids, I have to be a lot more careful about what street food we eat. Buying bottled water helps, and also, your tip about getting travel insurance is spot on. That was helpful for us when my husband came down with amoebas in the Philippines.

    Reply
    • Thanks Astrid, and sorry to hear your husband had a tough time in the Philippines. Hold onto these tips for your next post. What we like about the GRAYL water bottles, is that we don’t have to buy bottles of water, thus doing good for the environment. In any case, food, water and rest are important to ensuring safe and healthy travels.

      Reply
  33. This is all such great advice!! I love venturing out to try street food but can sometimes be skeptical. I always snack on ginger (usually juiced) and especially when traveling but I wouldn’t think of vaccines to be preventative! Such a good (and almost like ‘duh, why didn’t I think of that) tip!

    Reply
  34. What an extensive guide to eating street food! Great tips, thank you so much. I love eating street food when visiting new cities, so this information is very helpful.

    Reply
  35. These are awesome tips! I get motion sick sometimes and I swear by ginger when I travel. I’ll definitely be bringing activated charcoal with me next time. Thanks for this list.

    Reply
  36. I love eating street food – it’s one of my favourite parts of traveling. Especially in Southeast Asia – it’s so delicious and I miss it when I’m not there!

    These tips are great and I follow them when eating on the street – I’ve only been sick twice in 7 years of travel (In Delhi, India and Lima, Peru) but other than that I’ve eaten street found countless times and been fine!

    Reply
    • Awesome to hear Kelly, that after 7 years of travel you’ve only gotten sick twice. Agree, it is possible to enjoy eating local safely, and hope more travelers will apply these tips and create amazingly delicious experiences!! Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  37. Street food sometimes worries me about safety, you’re right. I do agree that farmers markets but I hadn’t thought that choosing a hot dish would be safer, thank you for the tips!

    Reply
    • You are so welcome for the tips!! Enjoying the local culture through food is a wonderful experience. And, experiencing it safely makes all the difference in the world. Glad you picked up a few new tips for your next trip. Thanks for your comments.

      Reply
  38. I love eating street food everywhere I go but I always follow your first rule: to be hot and cooked in front of me. I was lucky to only get sick once, and that wasn’t even because of the street food but some train meals in India. Hand sanitizer before starting your meal is a must as well.

    Reply
    • That is indeed the beauty of street food, it’s cooked right in front you giving you clear view of the kitchen and the vendor’s habits. Getting sick can happen anywhere, not only on the streets. As you mentioned, the best is to play it safe and liberally use hand sanitizer. Thanks Joanna for your comments.

      Reply
  39. These are some REALLY awesome tips! I wouldn’t have thought to carry my own utensils, and the ones you have are cute!! It really is important to keep a watchful eye on the vendors, and even a good reminder now and again if you easily get distracted by the delicious looking food!

    Reply
    • Thank you so much, Miranda, and thrilled to hear you love the tips. To eat local and safely on the street, one really must pay attention to lots of things and try not to get distracted by the food 🙂 Do get yourself a handy spork…you feel and eat much safer! Appreciate you stopping by!

      Reply
  40. Awesome tips! They’re common sense, but I didn’t think of some of them until you pointed it out – like whether there are elderly and children eating there.

    I want to make a suggestion that you also carry a metal straw along with sporks? That way you can also avoid using plastic straws. They’re really handy, and the large bore ones are super easy to rinse clean.

    Reply
    • Thanks Nuraini, so glad you enjoyed the article especially the tip about children and elderly. Great idea about adding a metal straw along with the sporks. Definitively something to add to the traveling food kit. Thanks for sharing your tips!!

      Reply
  41. This post is so helpful! It’s good to know how to safely eat street food. I got sick once in Hong Kong from street food and that was the worst experience ever!

    Reply
    • Thanks for sharing about your experience in Hong Kong. That’s really too bad. It’s no fun getting sick whether at home or while traveling. Hope you picked up a few new tips for your next travel adventure. Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply

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