Kansas State University student, and news hunter and gatherer, Gonzalo Erdozain (right, sorta as shown), finally got away on his honeymoon to the Dominican Republic after classes ended last week. Gonzalo returned yesterday and shares his tale below.
I probably contracted a slight case of food poisoning while honeymooning in the Dominican Republic. So did my wife, and I spent my birthday, literally, in the bathroom and having to use baby wipes on sensitive and inflamed, uh, skin.
We apparently weren’t alone.
The Toronto Star reported yesterday that five passengers aboard a WestJet flight from the Dominican Republic were taken to hospital by ambulance Wednesday night after apparently suffering from food poisoning.
I’d like to know the resort where those other sick people were staying, but if it was anything like ours, it became rapidly apparent that food safety standards in the U.S. are still much, much higher than those of the Dominican Republic.
The resort was luxurious and the service was indeed top of the line, but what they consider to be safe and appropriate is just different than what Americans do.
Gonzo’s do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do advice when visiting a resort in the Dominican:
• don’t eat ceviche that isn’t cold enough or that isn’t entirely covered by lemon and lime juice (which is what is supposed to kill microorganisms;
• don’t eat the fruit they put as decoration on your drinks, its been sitting out all day at the bar in temperatures around 80-90F; and,
• if you want to be extremely careful, even though the hotel tap water is purified, always use bottled water if it will end up in your mouth such as washing your toothbrush, mouth guard (yes, I wear one myself due to grinding), or even rinsing the toothpaste from your mouth – if you use the tap water for any of these, and it happens to be tainted, you will get sick.
Bonus traveler tips: A small bottle of Pepto-Bismol at the hotel costs $18, the equivalent of a year’s supply in the U.S., and yes, baby wipes are available, but there is nothing funny about having to go to the pharmacy and buy baby wipes in a couples-only resort.