Diabetes Research & Wellness Foundation

Diabetes and air travel

Hi my wife has been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in Tenerife.Do we need to get a doctors note to fly back to the uk.Can she take insulin epipen and needles onboard in hand luggage.Does this have to be kept in a special container or bag.Any help and advice please.This is all new to us.

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Sorry to here Rh53. I have flown all over & just put it in your hand luggage. If you have any paper work keep it with you. I have been T1 for over 50yrs & you will have to learn to look for signs that your wife is not to good BG low. Really good luck.

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Many thanks for your help

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Hi Rh53,

I have type 1 Diabetes and live in the USA. I got doctor notes for air travel when I was going to Florida. I put all my medications in a purse and used an item that keeps the insulin cool. When you get to the check in area, show the bags and notes to the check in staff and explain that your wife needs to be allowed to keep the medications with her for diabetes emergencies.

I hope this helps.

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Many thanks for your help

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Hi Rh53

Sorry to hear about your wife’s diagnosis. I’ve been type 1 for 22 years (since age 6) & have flown all over the world with no problems, I find it’s always best to ask for a Dr’s note just in case, I’ve only ever had to show mine in Berlin, usually they just give you a print of your repeat prescriptions but seeing as your wife is newly diagnosed, getting the dr to just explain the situation in the note will Be fine. Needles are not a problem at all and can be taken on the plane, never put yoir vital supplies in the hold as it’s too cold and they can be damaged, keep the insulin & blood glucose testing strips in your hand luggage. It’s an adjustment but it shouldn’t be any more difficult going through security,

i usually just mention as I’m putting my things in the tray that I’m type 1 and don’t want my insulin to go through the scanner (the machine can sometimes affect insulin) they always oblige and just pass it over the top to the other side.

Please make sure that if you’re on a budget flight, where food isn’t provided or you have to pay that your wife has some food on her such as jelly babies or glucose tabs as you never know when a Hypo (low blood sugar) can happen and she will need something To raise her levels.

I wish you wife all the best and hope you have a good flight home.

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Many thanks for youe help

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Make sure that your GP arranges for your wife to go on a course to learn about how to deal with her diabetes and what hypo signs to look for and how to deal with them. Also go onto the Www.diabetes.org.uk website for lots of support and information.

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Many thanks for you help

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I am sorry to hear about ur wife diagnosis ,assist her to visit a dietician .

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