As a business travel, I have visited some exotic cities and learned how important clean drinking water is. Water purification is done differently in each country and not all systems match the cleanliness we have come to expect. Other times countries have old or ill-maintained water distribution systems which infect the entire water network. Regardless of the reason, I have come to distrust tap water is most non-western countries.
Even bottled water may not be safe. I once caught a vendor in Thailand who was extracting the clean water from the bottles [by making a small incision in the bottom of the plastic bottles], replacing it with local tap water and then resealing the bottom with a dab of crazy glue. Bottled water can be bad because of foul play or simply because the contents weren’t treated as thoroughly as you would like.
“An estimated 10 million people develop Traveler’s Diarrhea each year. High-risk destinations include developing countries of Latin America, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.” - U.S. Center for Disease Control
WHAT IS IT?
The Steripen is a little device that is now part of my critical travel gear. Using hospital grade UV light, it kills 99.9% of bacteria, viruses and protozoa that cause water-borne illness. You simply fill a glass or plastic container, insert the Steripen tip into the water, press the start button, mix or shake the water during the purification process and when the light turns off, the water is safe to drink.
I have the original classic and it still works perfectly. All models have the same UV technology but they come in different sizes and shapes. Regardless of which one you choose, you will be well served.
There are some alternatives but none are as good as a Steripen. You can use water purification tablets but most require an extensive soaking period and change the waters taste.
You can always boil the water for 10-15 minutes but most business travellers simply don't have the facilities to boil water (A coffee machine does not boil the water).
This is the one I have. IT includes the Steripen, a large mouth water bottle adapter and the adapter tip that can be used for drinking.