Traveling is very stressful. There are countless things to consider. When do you leave? How will you get to the airport? Who will pick you up on the other end? How do you make sure your luggage gets there too? Traveling is even more difficult if you also have diabetes. Fortunately, a little planning ahead can make traveling with diabetes much easier.
First of all, you have to take into account what you’re going to be doing on your trip. Is it a lazy vacation where you won’t be under too much physical stress? Are you backpacking through Europe so you will likely need to monitor your diet carefully? These are the things you need to know before you can plan your trip.
Before you travel, it’s best to get a medical exam to ensure that your diabetes is still under control. This will also be necessary when you want to obtain travel insurance. You’ll need a letter from your doctor explaining what you should do for your diabetes as well as your actual prescription, whether it’s for insulin or diabetes pills. This will allow you to get your medication if you find that you need more for some reason.
Before you leave on your trip, you absolutely have to make sure that you have enough medication to last you through the trip. For sure, you will not be able to get to a pharmacy on a plane. In fact, plan so that you have enough to last up to a day after you reach your home, just to be safe. You should also always wear either a necklace or bracelet that identifies that you suffer from diabetes. This will be a great help if an accident happens. It’s also a good idea to get travel medical insurance to cover the cost of the prescription should you need to pick it up.
When it comes to packing, there are also some things you should always do. In keeping with the earlier train of thought, always pack lots of medication. If it’s possible, pack twice as much as you think you’ll need. Of that amount, pack half into your carry-on bag. Never leave all of your medicine in your checked luggage. If something should happen, like a flight delay, or your luggage gets lost, you will end up not having enough medication to get you through until you get to the nearest drug store.
So what should you pack? Certainly, you will need insulin and syringes, blood and urine testing supplies, extra batteries, and oral medications. You should also remember other medications like anti-nausea drugs, glucagon, and anti-diarrhea medication. You should also include your ID and diabetes identity card, just in case. Also, pack some treats with low sugar content like crackers, cheese, peanut butter, fruit, or hard candy.
You can never be too careful when you travel. It may seem overly cautious to pack all of that with you but the fact of the matter is it’s better to have it when you don’t need it than it is to wish you had packed it.