A Travelers Guide to Tap Water

Water can carry an impressive number of diseases. 80% of the illnesses contracted while traveling originate from infected water! Hence the need to drink drinking water and healthy during your travels is there. Drinking water while traveling must be a thoughtful act. Of course, it depends on your destination and how you travel. This is often the big question when traveling.

It is a legitimate question. In Europe there seems to be no worries. Certainly, tap water can sometimes have a not very pleasant taste, quite chlorinated. This is sometimes the case in Spain. In the countries of the “south”, really, you have to opt for bottled water. Do not take chances.

In the mountains, the thing is easier. If you are at high altitude, close to a peak and a source springs nearby, as a rule, you can drink it. However, it is better to filter or treat it.

Safe Drinking Water: Tap Water, Bottled Water, Hoses & Water Filters:

Tap water, bottled water or filtered water, what water to drink? The choice is not always easy, as the information is multiple and contradictory, influential advertising and powerful economic interests.

It’s a paradox. Tap water creates mistrust, although it is very controlled. Except in special cases infrequent, it is a drinking water that is to say in accordance with the sanitary requirements defined by decree. Fifty-four different parameters are monitored and regularly monitored. It is the health and environment centers, the regional health agencies, which are responsible for them.

Locally, the departments responsible for treatment plants for drinking water and distribution networks also do their own monitoring. It is almost permanent on large networks that supply large cities or communities of municipalities, less common on small networks that can be found in rural areas.

Bottled water

It is clear that bottled water must be more and more publicity to maintain their market share. The decline in purchasing power and the economic crisis have been for many, but bottled water must count with a new enemy, the awareness of their environmental impact.

It is well known that truck transportation emits greenhouse gases and that the best waste is that which is not produced. But when it comes to water, just switch to that tap to avoid plastic waste, nothing simpler. There are two main categories of bottled water: mineral waters and spring waters. They are of underground origin, as well as two thirds of the tap water distributed in France.

Mineral Waters

Mineral waters have a special feature; they do not meet the same regulations as tap water. Some would be refused on a public distribution network because they do not meet the criteria that define drinking water. They are subject to specific standards and can reach levels that are not tolerated for drinking water. For fluoride, for example, the limit is 1.5 mg / l for drinking water, but mineral water can contain up to 5 mg / l.


The composition of a mineral water must remain stable over time, and, compared to tap water, mineral waters are entitled to few treatments. We can intervene on iron, manganese, fluorine, but we do not do any disinfection treatment. The differences between the brands are due to differences in mineralization, ie calcium, magnesium, fluoride, sulphates, sodium … Some highly mineralized waters are not necessarily suitable for everyday use; better to check the composition.

Garden Hoses

One important thing that people often overlook is the hosing they use to get their water to the tap. Many times these tubes can be coated with all sorts of nonsense which will cause you to get ill. A very easy way to fix this is to get a high quality garden hose that is made of good drinking safe material.

You can learn which material is the best to drink out of online and I’ve personally found latex to be the best hose material. On garden hose adviser website they go into great detail and look at studies of the different hose materials and the effects it can have when drinking it.

Water Filter Jugs

The bottled water market is declining, while tap water is still mistrustful. There was a place to take, and it is the water filter jugs that occupy it, Brita in the lead. From 200,000 aircraft sold in 2000, the number one in the sector rose to 1,250,000 carafes sold 10 years later. Is this success of the filter jugs justified? To decide objectively, what to choose was realized a few years ago in two laboratory tests.

Millions of Americans drink potentially unsafe tap water:

There are indeed problems with tap water but it depends on where you are but it is still drinkable, there is simply a problem of adaptation of some organisms (the reciprocal is also true for Americans coming in Europe).

If you want to buy bottled water, you will find gallons (3.8 liters) at a price of $ 2.00 (drinking water) in all supermarkets. Not to be confused with gallons of demineralized water for batteries and irons.

Where You Can (and Can’t) Drink Tap Water in Europe:

Tap water is perfectly drinkable in Belgium. It is a great success … which we are not always aware of. Everyone does not like the taste of water, but even this problem can be solved by a filter system, which further purifies the tap water.

This is not the case everywhere in the world, or even within Europe. Abroad, it is better to be careful if you use the tap water to cook, brush or drink. In Eastern Europe, you will not be sure to drink healthy, quality water unless you buy it in the bottle. Check during the purchase if your bottles have not already been opened and refilled. It may be that there is mains water there.

In other countries, such as Ukraine and Hungary, there is no problem in the cities, but in the countryside it is better to use mineral water bottles.

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