Taking Meds On Holiday: We’re flying to... - Lung Conditions C...

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Taking Meds On Holiday

PAP48 profile image
39 Replies

We’re flying to Cyprus at the end of January and I need to take all medication with me. How has anyone done this? My pulmonary team have said all in original boxes and with prescription and/or letter from GP! I’m thinking the blister packs have the name of the drug on them and I can take my prescription! So many boxes would take up a lot of room - hand luggage/checked in bag or split between both? Thank you for replies.

39 Replies
madonbrew profile image

I would put all in hand luggage just incase case gets lost. I don't know about blister packs but would assume ok if you've got your repeat prescription. I've never been stopped for meds and have been abroad every year most of my life. Have a super holiday! Definitely get travel insurance though and there's a new style e11 card but I can't remember what it's called.

saltyskies profile image
saltyskies in reply to madonbrew

definitely make sure you’ve got a GHIC card for Greece!

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to saltyskies

We do have those, applied for them last year. Hopefully we won't need to use them! Thank you for replying. Keep safe.

Patk1 profile image

I'd put in hand luggage with prescription.if yr unsure re boxes ring the flight company special assistance

teddyd profile image

Always hand luggage and repeat prescription. And if anything with needles a Drs letter.Have a great trip x

Bevvy profile image

I’ve always decanted meds from box. Otherwise far too much to carry. I keep in hand luggage just incase luggage is lost. I also take a copy of prescription, just in case but have to say I’ve never been queried about meds, although not been abroad much over the years. When bird flu was prevalent in the country 10yrs or so ago. I also had a letter from gp explaining that my temperature was always in the high side and this is not of concern.

Basically I try to have answers to most eventualities.

saltyskies profile image
saltyskies in reply to Bevvy

To add my own anecdotal experience, I’ve recently flown a few times and not once been queried about my meds. One bag got taken aside at Security as my inhalers must have looked odd on the scanner and they literally just unzipped the corner, looked at them, and gave me my bag. I didn’t necessarily plan everything perfectly lol and had packed a couple of unlabelled bags of medication 😂 including a bag containing sachets of testosterone gel. Neither questioned (although I don’t recommend banking on that). My mum was diabetic as well and would travel with insulin and needles etc., one time she got asked for prescription evidence I remember because she was annoyed as it had never happened before (and did not happen after)! 😂

saltyskies profile image
saltyskies in reply to saltyskies

generally speaking, airports will have seen varying medications and types and quantities, the most I expect these days is a quick go-over with the drug scanning wand. All will be fine :)

Izb1 profile image
Izb1 in reply to saltyskies

I went to Tenerife last summer and was told to put my inhaler in a seperate plastic bag on its own, that was the only difference x

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to Izb1

Thank you for your reply, I hadn't thought about that, that's what I'll do too. Keep safe.

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to Bevvy

This is the first time we've been away since before Covid, so wanted to make sure there we no new rules to worry about! Thank you for replying.

saltyskies profile image

oh gosh no I never take them all in their boxes!! Depending on what is more suitable for you, you could try jamming as many of the sheets of tablets into the same box as possible, or flatten one box and take that in a bag with the sheets of tablets (or just the pills if they come ‘loose’). For inhalers just them loose (but I would still recommend flattening one of the boxes they come in as well). This way you have the box to hand if they question it, but don’t have to take every single box with you :)

saltyskies profile image

And yes, hand luggage if possible. I would definitely make sure you have a supply in your hand luggage even if the rest goes in the hold: I had 2 of each inhaler in hand luggage and the remaining 3 in hold, one bag of nebuliser capsules in hand and one in hold etc. so in the very rare event my baggage got lost I would not be stranded, but I also wasn’t taking up my entire hand luggage allowance with medication.

Ern007 profile image

I have taken my meds all over Europe. In their original boxes but not bothered with doctors letter, just repeat prescription. Take out correct travel insurance and declare all ailments.

This link from NHS should help you.


PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to Ern007

Thank you for your reply. We have our travel insurance in place thankfully. Only had to call on it once whilst in Vietnam with pneumonia! Definitely list all ailments otherwise there could be a problem.

peege profile image

I've travelled a lot and always travel light. I'd have two copies of prescription - one kept in my wallet at all times. I'd take the leaflets out of the boxes and replace with the contents from an identical box so double up in each box. I'd cram in as many blister packs as I could in to one box. I'd keep them in my carry on hand baggage with spare inhalers.

The only time I've had a problem losing bags was with hold baggage - and I've never used the hold since in 25 yeas

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to peege

I'm going to pack all meds in my hand luggage, just the blister packs with my prescription, just in case. Inhaler in a separate bag and the liquids, saline, I think can go in my hold luggage as I'm sure I can buy it in a chemist if the worst happens and my bags go missing but fingers crossed they don't!

Younie profile image

I would advise getting intouch with the airline, most of them allow an extra piece of handluggage free if charge for medications if its an amout that is larger ( last year i travelled tui, BA, easy jet and ryan air....ryan air the only ones that made it very difficult) they just say that only medications/ medical devices can be in it, from security point of view blisterpacks would be fine as normally has the label on it and a copy of your prescriotion. And most importantly, alway take all medication as hand luggage never ever put it in the hold (and i always take 1/2 weeks extra just incase)

Cloudancer profile image

I hope that you have a lovely holiday.I don't do long haul flights anymore just occasionally to Stockholm or Ireland.

I have a lot of meds -usually keep in original packs and take latest respiratory OPD letter as well.

I have had the nebulising capsules swobbed at security and the nebuliser taken out and examined but in the main no issues.

I also carry all meds in hand luggage.

I hope this is helpful.

Best wishes

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to Cloudancer

Thank you, first holiday since before Covid, so really looking forward to it. Keep safe.

busygardener profile image

have a lovely holiday,i have to put my inhalers in the clear plastic bag you are given at airport ,this is after with discussions ,being told by security on 2 occassions that they must go in there as as they are pressurised cannisters.Like others have said make sure you put them in hand luggage x

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to busygardener

Thank you, can't wait! Keep safe.

Cruise1 profile image

I take mine in blister packs along with prescription record. I just put them all together in a resealable polythene bag.

Egpa profile image

Hi, PAP48, when I fly with Tui I give them a list of all my meds that I am taking with me, prescription back and any letters from hospital if you take injections in advance, if you have loads you can carry them as a medical bag, inform airport as uiu go through. I take Mtx, nebuliser all my meds they take you straight through if you get medical assistance, which you have to book befor you go. I also take my last letters from hospital and i always fill in my personal details on the beginning of contacts just to make sure I have all my information ie hospital number, phone number, emergency numbers,meds i take last appointment dates and tests. Good luck. By the way medical bags don't count as had luggage so you can take a bag as well. Take care stay safe.

davidcantswim profile image

I've been to Cyprus a few times and took meds in pill boxes with clingfilm around them to stop them falling out.

I do take 2 lots of each with me, One in my carry on bag and one in my suitcase.

On my next trip abroad I am going to take another lot in my over the shoulder "man bag"

My wife takes a few of each with her too.

Not over the top as once I ended up in A and E in Limassol and it was horrific.

Karenanne61 profile image

As others have said , I take mine, out of their boxes, in a clear, zipped bag (large pencil/make up bag , in my hand luggage. (I take it in handluggage as suggested by consultant) I take the bag out and put it with my jewellery in the box at customs. Also, I used airport assistance last year and it was very helpful. I also have photographed , on my phone, any paperwork, scripts, oxygen alert card etc. Happy holidays!

JJ_7 profile image

I use a single or double dosset box with clear bag in my carry-on luggage. I have my prescription with me . I have been stopped once at Gatwick when I had nicorette included. Fortunately my GP had prescribed this and when I showed the script, I passed through no problem.

Have a wonderful holiday :)

CyprusPat profile image

as I can’t get a fit to fly letter from my pulmonologist I’m stuck here in Cyprus so can’t answer your med question but enjoy your holiday. Sent you a pic.

Colour photo of Larnaca bay where the plane turns for approach to airport.
PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to CyprusPat

Thank you CyprusPat and for the great photo, makes it even more real we will actually be there soon. We are staying near Paphos and can't wait.

CyprusPat profile image
CyprusPat in reply to PAP48

enjoy your holiday. Guess you’ll be flying into Pafos so you won’t get the view 😊

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to CyprusPat

Thank you. We’re actually flying into Larnaca. Flying with BA and they don’t fly to Paphos in the winter.

Maximonkey profile image

Hi PAP48, I take my meds in my hand luggage without the boxes, all together in a zipped bag with my prescription list. If I took them in boxes I would be like you - not enough room. My inhalers and my nasal spray I have in the special plastic bags that the Customs like. I have been stopped because of something else being in the hand luggage but never for not having the meds in boxes. I do know though that some airlines will let you have two hand luggage bags for your meds if you request this when you book. Good luck and have a lovely holiday. Maximonkey

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to Maximonkey

Thank you Maximonkey. Really looking forward to it. Hoping I won't have to take my large nebuliser, awaiting test results to see if I can have a break from Colomycin while I'm away. Fingers crossed! Keep safe.

Otto11 profile image

Hi I travel to Cyprus several times a year as have a house there. We usually stay for 4 weeks at a time & travel with a lot of meds as also have lung problems & Epilepsy. I just take them in one large clear zipped food bag without their boxes as as others have said they would take up my whole hand luggage allowance otherwise. I don’t have a GP’s letter but do take my prescription list. I’ve never had any problems at either end with meds but always get stopped at Manchester airport with my injections for some reason. They have an assistance lane at Manchester which is quicker with less queuing not sure if other airports do but I would imagine they do. I hope you have a lovely holiday. The weather currently is good in the daytime about 18 degrees or a bit more but chilly at night so be prepared. If you are in a hotel that won’t be a problem.x

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to Otto11

Thank you Otto11, I'm keeping my eye on the weather. When we've been before at this time of year, it's been warm enough to eat outside during the day and to walk round without being bundled up in a coat! We are in a hotel, cannot wait! Keep safe.

Otto11 profile image
Otto11 in reply to PAP48

Where are you staying? Our place is in Paphos in a small village a few miles up the hill from the old town. We thought about going in a few weeks but I’m having a pre op on Wednesday for foot surgery which should be quite quick so not booked flights yet. If it’s Paphos you will notice quite a few changes going on. I hope you have a lovely time. X

PAP48 profile image

Thank you for all your very helpful replies, advice and information. I will pack all my meds in my hand luggage with my prescription. Another concern off the list. Keep safe everyone.

ladyn profile image

I always put them in my hand luggage without the boxes, I just cut the boxes so it shows my name and take those because I don’t have any prescription as all done on line now. Never had a problem when flying.

PAP48 profile image
PAP48 in reply to ladyn

Thank you - I do have a prescription, one is always attached to my meds order so I will take that. Keep safe.

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