Asthma UK community forum

Travel Advice please

Hi all,

Well I have now managed to stay out of hospital for 5 months nearly, so thought I'd make the most of this good spell and book a holiday. I am planning to go to Germany to visit a friend in Nov, but making arrangements is a whole new learning curve!

Firstly I have to get a Drs letter to confirm I can fly then pay an additional £100 for oxygen for the flight. I was pretty disgusted that Ryanair charge £1 per minute to telephone them to request additional support e.g oxygen and taking my w/ch with me. I have also sent an e-mail to the oxygen providers in Germany to arrange my oxygen for over there. If I book through my local provider it is over £100, which for a short visit is all getting expensive.

Has anybody else had similar experiences? I am quite nervous as would be in a mess if the oxygen wasn't in place (on plane/friends house). I am hoping my small sonic neb will be ok in hand luggage with a Drs note. I have got an EHIC card so wasn't sure whether I needed additional insurance, as its already an expensive short trip with the costs of O2. Would be good to hear from anybody else who has travelled abroad with the extra essentials asthma brings with it! Thanks

10 Replies

Well hello, I do believe that user name is familiar

Haven't got anything useful to contribute (haven't been abroad in years) but just wanted to say hi!

<waves frantically at her pal>

Love Em xx


Yes you need additional travel insurence dont go without, european card doesnt cover 100% and doesnt cover during travel, so if you took ill mid flight you would have to pay!!

Check with airlines before flying as not all supply o2 and alot of the budget ones dont, prices vary, for me to cyprus last yr was between £80 and £100 each way and you have to pay even if dont use it. I struggled to get insurence alot wanting over £1000 but eventually got it for £250 for a week, ontop of £160 for o2 at destination. There no such thing as a cheap holiday its unfair!!!

If you scrool back in the archives there is this topic before where various peeps have given there contact details of insurers.

Have you considered ferry? may work out cheeper?

Anyway good lick

hope you get away

Love Andrea xxxx


Thanks Wheezyab, I will definately look into insurance. Sounds good advice, especially as it has taken me so long to pursuade my consultant to let me fly. I did look into other methods of getting there, but as I rely on overnight O2 was all a bit difficult/complicated.

Well EmilyH seems weird reading about you on here, think I'll stick to catching up with you over a Pimms!


Hello Loupin,

I have used the Post Office travel insurance with a medical excess on top - Costs me £130 for a 2 week world wide trip to the Falklands. You must get insurance because it is cheaper than paying medical costs or Medevac if it came to it ( tens of thousands of pounds possibly!!)

I have looked at specialist medical travel insurance companies in the past but they take advantange I think of our conditions and I have been quoted £600 plus in the past. though Saying that, AUK suggest heath Lambert which porvice Trav Ins for people with CF to Europe.

I do use O2 for emergencies etc at home but my cons has said that I am OK traveling without it (and I was last year) so I didn't declare it which kept the price down.

Your neb will be fine in hand luggage - I used my Omron on the plane 30 mins after take off as lots of fumes belched back into the plane! ( a very old 747 borrowed by the RAF) Also take all your meds in your hand luggage and if you have needles or epipens - get a docs letter stating that you are alowed to carry sharps.

Hope this helps and I hope I haven't put any spanners in the works.

Ryanair is not the best airline in the world - I was stranded without a wheelchair after landing at Stansted a few years ago - well there were 2 of us who had 'booked' them and the OAP who was virtually unable to stand got it.

Also - Label every detachable wheelchair part - or pop them all in a bag tied to your wheelchair.

at least being out of hospital stands you in good sted for getting insurance.



I agree with Kate - the risks of not getting insurance (or indeed not getting adequate insurance!) are huge!

Be careful with Heath Lambert - when I called they wouldn't insure anybody on over 10mg of pred a day, and even when they did cover, it was very expensive. I have heard that Endsleigh are very good, although all conditions must have been diagnosed for over 12 months. Many people with CF seem to use it.

I have only ever taken my neb on as hand luggage, and again a doctor's letter to cover nebuliser, sharps etc, is absolutely necessary. Also take a photocopy or your original prescription repeat so that you can prove any medication if necessary.

Hope you have a good time!


Heath Lambert wouldn't cover me at all outside Europe.

I have advised AUK asthma nurses to suggest the PO insurance as they are good.

Though anyone who has Fortis as their undwewriter is a good firm! eg the PO.



Pimms is on me any time, hunny!


Thank you Kate and Carrie, your advice has been fab and I'm sure will save me lots of unneccessary time searching for insurance companies. I would have never thought about labelling w/ch footplates etc what a good tip. Glad you had no problems using your neb, as just knowing its there is reassuring. I see my consultant next week so will ask him to write my letter soon, as its taken a while to convince him to let me fly being normally on the hypoxic side. Thanks again x


free sprit travel insurance

Go to and they are in there i even got insuance and have bounced in and out of intensive care quite a few times this year and have sub cut and port so give them a go what do you have to lose.


Thanks Rachel c, will give them a try. Have already tried the PO and Tesco who have refused to insure me. One of the questions asked (among loads) was are you waiting for any tests or have you been referred recently to a hospital for further investigations not considered your standard treatment? I have been referred to a centre as ? Pulmonary Hypertension. So far I have only had to answer yes and no but don't like the idea of having to declare more than that at this stage. Expected insurance to be expensive but not impossible! Will try your company, fingers crossed!


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