Flying with nebuliser/asthma meds - Asthma UK communi...

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Flying with nebuliser/asthma meds

angievere profile image

My son is flying for the first time next week (school trip to Germany). It's about 8 years since I've flown so I'm out of touch about carrying asthma meds. Does anyone know if a portable nebuliser (Omron Microair) plus nebules are allowed in hand luggage? Do I need a GPs letter about the nebuliser? Also, can all the other meds (inhalers, steroids etc) be carried in hand luggage?

There are other threads on flying with nebs but they are several years old (as far as I can see) and I don't know if things have changed recently. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

15 Replies

Any medications can be taken in hand luggage and onto the plane as long as :

a) they're in their original packaging with prescription labels (e.g. don't decant anything into pill boxes) and

b) They're accompanied by a letter from a Dr, which could be a GP or consultant.

With regards to other medication i would suggest to carry ALL asthma medications in hand luggage just in case. If his bags were to be lost or mislaid (which im sure they won't!) it will obviously prevent any problems from not taking medications occurring and reduce the hassle of trying to get prescriptions abroad.

Airlines normally have no problems at all, and don't normally check my letter but definitely make sure one is carried to prevent any problems.

Good luck, I'm sure all will be fine!

I'm going to be flying in August, so this is relevant to me to.

The advice seems to be that ALL medications (including spare) goes in the hand luggage, you need a letter from GP stating names of all meds, and these must have full pharmacy labels with the same name as in the passenger details.

I don't know about a battery operated neb - electric ones you have to contact airline.

Does anyone know if your meds count towards your hand luggage limit or if they're allowed on top of it? I'm a bit concerned because all my asthma meds plus my meds for other conditions are not going to fit in normal hand luggage, or if I can possibly squeeze them in, there won't be any room for anything else.


I flew a few weeks back and i had 2 omrons (micro air) in my hand luguage, spare batteries and all my medication needed for the holiday including nebules. I made sure i told the airline in advance. I took a doctors letter saying i needed my nebuilser on the flight and during my holiday, i took a doctors letter stating he was happy for me to fly and a doctors letter with a full list of my medications including antibiotics on and a copy of my repeat prescription script.

Make sure they are all in there original boxes and have there prescription labels on. Including parceptmol and any other things you may include. Nebules need to be in there sealed packages although you are allowed a few lose ones in the nebuilser case to be used straight away but rest need to be in there sealed packaging.

I went through customs and the lot and they never questioned or even wanted to look through my bag it was really weird. but i was well organised for incase they did.

I also took my GP email address and telephone number incase of any problems abroad so the medical people out there could contact them but i am brittle asthma and have lots of other conditions and weird allergies and can only have set treatment once in hospital.

I would say the more letters you have the better also make sure all medication is in the hand luggage. I took mine in a handall kind of bag or a gym bag style. It is actually what i use normally as my hospital bag.

Hope that helps people.


P.S if you find anything else out i fly again in august!

Thanks for replies, it's been really helpful. Very good idea to have GP's details.

I've flown loads with hospital neb and microair with no probs. Used omron on plane with no questions asked. Sometimes they check in security sometimes they don't. I usually tell them before it goes thru scanner. Also def have repeat script as they check this along with doc letter saying you need neb too - but then sometimes they don't! I had 1 time where they took everything out and checked against script.

I keep all my meds in handluggage and in multiple clear zipped bags that they sell as suitable for airport security in varying sizes in tesco/m&s etc.

Basically better to be over than under prepared!


I did as everyone suggested here. Going through Heathrow was fine - no checks at all. But flying out of Cologne was a bit nerve racking for 13 yr son who's never flown before. German security staff were particularly interested in his meds and Omron nebuliser. They gave him a bit of a grilling over the nebuliser and practically took it to bits. I wished I'd included the German instructions and labelled the Omron case in German - son was a bit shaken by the encounter.

Anyway, apart from that, all went well. Son came home very wheezy but happy (and didnt need neb!)

Extra weight Allowance

In response to Ratty, it's worth talking to your airline about having extra hand luggage allowance, when I flew to China for a gap year the airline gave me an extra 10kg (in hold) for medication and food (coeliac) I didn't ask about extra hand luggage, but if you don't ask, you won't get :D

nebs on plane

i didt realise you can use a neb on a plane i get abit short of breath on a 4 hour flight got by with my puffer i always put my neb wraped in my towels in my luggage just take my meds in hand luggage do the have oxengen on planes if you wher to need it .


Regarding meds...... I have so many that I pop them all out into weekly organisers.

I have travelled with RAF (Civilian flights), Ryanair and Finnair (BA one leg) and not had problems with the tablets not being in their original containers. I think If I kept them in the original pots & packs that there will be no room for anything else in my hand luggage. I do however, have the repeat script form, my protocol etc with me and a Drs letter about all my nebs, epipens and s/c stuff.

Perhaps I have been lucky! No one has ever checked them...........

Regarding O2 on planes, if you need it you need to advise the airline (Can be costly) but if you ever need it in an emergency the airline should give it to you, but you may end up being diverted - expensive and inconvenient to all. Please ensure you are Fit to fly if you do have difficult asthma or even if mild, check with your GP. Also ensure adequate travel insurance!!!

I always have my meds, neb (Oscar Omron) and epipens in my hand luggage.... your main luggage may end up in Timbuktoo!



Meegan, thanks for the suggestion, I'll contact the airlines and see what they say, I've been looking for a suitable bag today to put my meds etc in, but couldn't find anything - anyone any ideas - I was thinking of something like a cool-bag design (but bigger than the picnic ones) so it's slightly padded (my meds don't need to be kept cold, just felt the design was the right sort of thing), but there wasn't anything the right size :(

Interesting about original boxes or not, because that's what's going to bulk out my meds, but everything says it must be in original boxes - has anyone else managed without?

Kate ... that was a bit unfair of BA only to fly one of your legs home and make the rest of you take a different airline - I'd sue them if I were you!!!! :D

Having not flown since all the security regulations were put in place, can someone explain the situation with taking water on board? One of my meds, which I'll need to take several times during the flight, has to be dissolved in a glass of water. Will they let me take water for this, or will I have to buy water once through security at their highly marked up prices?

Ratty, You cant take water with you through security but buy it on the other side to take on the plane. My sister who flies a lot says the airlines are very strict on what u can take in hand luggage - she had to throw away contact lens solution going through security (going to USA). Son's meds and portable neb were checked coming from Germany - he said a boy had to throw away his hair gel (!) and shampoo on the same trip. Going from Heathrow nothing was checked.

Edit. It's worth checking your airlines website - they will have info on carrying meds. and hand luggage.

Having flown a fair bit, I've only ever had problems in Australia when I told them that a Seretide Accuhaler was hardly a bomb, but that was my fault. Going through some of the biggest airports in the world I can honestly say that so long as you're prepared, they're very fair

Ratty! LOL! (now need a neb laughing!!!)

BA did a conecting flight from Helsinki to Heathrow for Finnair!

I arrived back intact! No legs elsewhere... Sorry my brain was a bit addled when I wrote that message.

Elephant..... naughty! Never ever say anything about bombs or explosives when going through security!


I have just rung Lufthansa to double check they work the same as BA and i got told that i could have my omron in my hand luggage with batteries and spare nebules. And all my medication i needed for my holiday with medical letters from my consultant and repeat prescription list in my hand luggage.

The lady was very helpful and very prompt with her answer.

ok i not going till august but i thought it was worth checking now as i see my consultant next week.


Nebs and flights

Hi all,

TBH I have had no problems with flying with my nebuliser etc.

The only real issues have been in Ireland and Germany where they question what it is and spend for ever reexamining - usually until someone with asthma identifies it as what it is...

Never enquired if allowed to take on as hand luggage eithe r- always just had it there and that was even with all of the travel restrictions that have been in place the last couple of years...

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