Our Top 10 lifehacks to avoid sandfly bites

This are our Top 10 life hacks to avoid sandfly bites.

Being hit by sandfly bites and the ensuing ordeal many times while flashpacking in South East Asia we have found the best ways to treat sandfly bite safely . In this article, we will give you a our Top 10 lifehacks  to avoid getting bitten by sandflies.

1: coconut oil

  • Rub yourself with coconut oil
  • This makes it nearly impossible for the sandflies to land and they can’t bite through the greasy surface on your skin
  • This is the most common advice you will be given
  • A disadvantage is that your clothes will be greasy as well and the sand will stick to your skin, which can be annoying

2: take a big white bed linen (the bigger the better) and put it on the beach under your towels

  • sandflies don’t like white
  • if there might be one anyway it is much easier for you to spot it with the white background

3: bring incent sticks to the beach

  • Sandflies don’t like smoke
  • put them up so that the smoke gets blown over your towels by the breeze of the beach
  • that will do a lot to keep them away

4: Prepare your space

  • Sandflies hide in the sand (as their name says…) so when you lie down it might help if you prepare the space you want to put your towel
  • Rake the sand – with this you have the possibility to cast them out and they die in the burning sun
  • Wet the sand – they don’t like wet sand and can’t move in it
  • Of course you can already put your towel as near to the ocean as possible during low tide. When the water goes away the sand is still wet anyway without extra work for you

5: Try to find a beach, where you’ll see a bar/hotel/resort with a wooden deck

  • this has turned out to be the most effective protection against sandflies
  • as soon as the dangerous time (approx. 1,5 hours before sunset) starts, you can move away from the beach and still enjoy the ocean view and the feeling to be close to the sand
  • most hotels will allow you to even use their sunbeds if you buy a drink or two

6: Put a high concentrated deed on

  • In Asia we have had good results with and mosquito repellant, which contains a percentage of around 15% of deed (or higher)
  • But please note: deed is a very aggressive chemical so please make sure to use it with awareness
  • Don’t let it come near your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Be careful not to spray it on you delicates (mobile phones, leather goods, delicate clothes…)
  • Use it to protect you during sunset or dinner – but make sure to rinse it off when you come home or go to bed

7: Use a mix of Dettol and baby oil

    • It sounds strange to use cleaning agent on your skin but this mixture has been proven to be working +
    • The smell of the Dettol is repelling the sandflies and you will have a good chance that they don’t even come near you
    • The baby oil has a similar effect like the coconut oil and the sandflies can neither land nor find the stability to sit and they also can’t get through the oily film of the baby oil
    • But make sure to thoroughly rinse it off after you have left the dangerous area!!!

8: Rub yourself with garlic 🙂

  • This is a life hack we would recommend for any single traveller, who is not interested in any company whatsoever
  • Nevertheless the smell of the garlic will keep the sandflies away
  • If you are searching for travel buddies: no! don´t do it

9: Rub yourself will Vegemite

  • Vegemite is most common in Australia and it has a love-it-or-hate-it-nature to it
  • But using its yeast flavour to repel the sandflies comes in very useful for all – regardless the taste
  • although the color makes it more favourable for the single traveller or very intimate and familiar couples

10: Put out a sandfly trap of warm fat

  • In the history of travelling many explorers have come up with creative (and nearly absurd) ideas to avoid sandfly bites: Maori rubbed Ngaio leaves on their skin, lighthouse workers painted their houses with kerosene and even swallowed some spoonfuls of kerosene to have it evaporated through the skin again
  • But one successful trick is to redirect sandflies through putting up a trap
  • A bowl of a mixture of warm fat (e.g. lard) and camphor is a effective way to get the attention of the sandflies away from the tourist on the towel



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