Where you can and cant drink tap water as a tourist

Travel Forums General Talk Where you can and cant drink tap water as a tourist

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1. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 813 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

The information is suppose to be from the CDC and I think they are erring on the side of caution with some of the countries listed (Lithuania really?) but I think overall it is a pretty good infographic for a quick look about water quality around the world.

Where you can and cant drink tap water as a tourist around the world

2. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 1003 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

If you want reliable and up-to-date official advice about drinking tap water in a particular country imo it's much better to look at an official site rather than at an infographic said to be compiled from a particular site (by whom and when?):

https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/list

For obvious reasons the CDC is extremely cautious in its advice (the US is, after all, a litigious society). But it doesn't say 'don't drink the tap water'. Where given, the advice is to only drink water which is either bottled or has been 'disinfected' (with no clarity about what that actually means). As well as Lithuania, this advice is given for several other EU countries: Latvia, Cyprus, Romania, Bulgaria.....ignoring the fact that a potable water supply is essential for EU accession....as well as for 'rural & remote' areas in all EU countries as well as to Gibraltar and the Madeira islands.

As I'm from the UK I prefer to use our own official sites for country-specific travel health advice:

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice

https://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/home

3. Posted by BeateR (Full Member 146 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

The tap-water in Europe and USA is absolutelys clean and tested. Nevertheless I don't drink it, which country ever besides of Germany, my home-country.
But not why I'm afraid of microbes or so, but there could be maybe heavy metall in (which nobody can take out), or it don't taste good, or it is chlorinated (as much of the tap water in USA).
If in a foreign I only drink spring water from the bottle.

4. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 1770 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

BeateR you certainly can remove heavy metals. I used to work with a company who had a product which did specifically that.

I also think it is highly likely that your water at home is chlorinated just like in the USA.

5. Posted by BeateR (Full Member 146 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

No, we live in Munich and there is, as in most of the cities in Germany, the water not chlorinated. If the authorities have to chlorinate it, on which reason ever, they will post a "warning"

We here in Germany are having the luck to have a lot of underground water and don't rely on water from lakes and rivers (which the ecxeption of a few cities). And especially we in Munich use spring water from the mountains as tap water.

Beate

6. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 1003 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

If Germany doesn't chlorinate its water (whether spring water or not) I'm very surprised the CDC doesn't advise US citizens against drinking it. It doesn't. It's just got the standard:

>Food and water standards in Germany 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. However, travelers visiting rural or remote areas that are served by unregulated water sources such as private wells should take special precautions to ensure the safety of their drinking water.

I suppose that's enough to cover itself against potential litigation...but it doesn't explain why it advises against drinking tap water )which is, of course, perfectly potable) in some other EU countries.

[ Edit: Edited on 30-Oct-2019, 16:55 GMT by leics2 ]

7. Posted by BeateR (Full Member 146 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

The answer is clear: because our water is supervised very strongly. And there is not any small creature, what ever, in it. I think you almost anywhere in the world you can get such clean water out of the tap then in Germany. (Maybe Norway and Sweden).
I know the hype of Americans about Chlorine, we had the trubel with chlorinated chicken, which nobody in Germany would eat.

8. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 1770 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

I think I'd distrust tap water that didn't have anything to protect it from microbes. When they moved over to this did they replace all your pipes with plastic ones? Presumably chlorine is still used at the treatment plant stage and just removed for distribution?

I wonder how many Germans drink their tap water.

9. Posted by BeateR (Full Member 146 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

They didn't "move over". It was always so. Why should there be microbes in a very clear water?
And no, also in the treatment plant no chlorine is used. It is not necessary.
Did you ever hear about any case of illness triggered by tap water in germany???? Me not, and I live here for almost 70 years.

10. Posted by leics2 (Travel Guru 1003 posts) 3w Star this if you like it!

>Why should there be microbes in a very clear water?

Microbes exist everywhere. It doesn't matter whether the water is clear or not, nor whether it comes from groundwater, springs, rivers, reservoirs or wells...it will contain microbes. Microbes which are harmful to human health must be removed from drinking water.

>Did you ever hear about any case of illness triggered by tap water in germany????

Beate, no-one is suggesting that German tap-water causes illness. We're just asking how the water is treated before it arrives in your house.

[ Edit: Edited on 30-Oct-2019, 18:24 GMT by leics2 ]