Travelling with medication

It can be difficult to know what medications you will need when travelling, but with most general medicines being available overseas, less is probably more.

When planning your next overseas trip, you need to factor into your packing list the amount of medications you will need to bring along, as well as how you are going to store them. It is also worth considering and checking any rules you need to follow when carrying your medications into a new country. You may need to declare your medications at the customs points or even carry a doctors letter with you stating what medications you are carrying and why.

Depending on where you are travelling to, most general medicines are available at local pharmacies. Painkillers and allergy medicines will be easily available over the counter, so rather than taking a large supply it would be more advisable to take just one pack in your carry on luggage to tide you over until you reach your destination. Just make sure you leave your medications in their original packaging to avoid any dramas if your luggage should be searched at the airport.

As brand names of medications can vary internationally, find out the generic name of your medication. Better still, Google the name of the medication in the language of the country you are visiting and keep a note – either hand written or on the Notes app on your smartphone – along with the dosages you require.

So that you have all your medications together and easily accessible, purchase an additional toiletry bag specifically to hold all your medicines and any first aid items you may require. Don’t put it in your checked luggage, instead carry it with you in your hand luggage. In case your flight is delayed, take enough medication with you to cover an extra day or two.

Our suggestions for your travelling medical bag of tricks would include –

Pain relief medicine such as paracetamol
Antihistamine tablets for stings or bites
Motion sickness tablets
Antiseptic ointment
Insect repellent
Diarrhoea medicine
Mild laxative for constipation
Antacid for indigestion
Prescription medication
Sticking plasters, wound dressing and adhesive tape

Do you travel with medication? Can you suggest any other items that should or should not be taken with you when travelling?

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