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Diwali 2023

10 October 2023

Diwali is a festival of lights and one of the major religious festivals in Hinduism, Jainism and Sikhism. Observances of Diwali differ depending on region and tradition.

The festival usually lasts 5 days and is celebrated during the Hindu lunisolar month Kartika (between mid-October and mid-November). In 2023, the 5 days of Diwali commence on 10 November.

The main festivities for Diwali are held in India, but it is also celebrated in many other countries around the world. Many people will travel abroad to visit friends and relatives at this time.

Advice for travellers

Before Travel

Prior to travel, all travellers planning on travelling abroad to celebrate Diwali should be advised to consider the following:

  • be aware that international travel guidance may change at short notice
  • review the latest FCDO foreign travel advice for India including entry requirements, quarantine restrictions and any challenges related to the climate (such as unusually high temperatures)
  • review and follow the latest travel health advice for India: see the TRAVAX India country page for further information
  • be aware of precautions they should take to reduce their risk of exposure to coronavirus (COVID-19) before, during and after travel as detailed on the fitfortravel website COVID-19: Health Considerations for Travel page
  • ensure they have valid travel insurance in place

The pre-travel consultation provides a good opportunity to check a traveller is up to date with UK schedule vaccines. In the past, large gatherings of people have been responsible for the transmission of highly infectious diseases such as measles and influenza.

During Travel

All travellers should be given advice and advised to take precautions with:

Arthropod-borne diseases, including malaria, are a potential risk in India.

Excessive alcohol and/or drug use can lead to an increase in risk-taking behaviours which may lead to incidents such as accidents and/or injuries occurring.

The temperature in India can exceed 30’ C.

  • Travellers should be advised to keep well hydrated and seek shade during the hottest hours of the day, and/or wear a head covering.
  • Practicing sun safety can help reduce the risk of sunstroke and other heat disorders in warm weather, as well as skin cancer.

For further information on disease risks, other health risks and vaccination advice, see the India country page.

After Travel

Travellers should be advised that if they become unwell in the weeks/months after travel, particularly with a fever, flu-like symptoms, rash and/or diarrhoea, they should seek prompt medical advice, and ensure they mention their travel history to the health professional.