Travelling with Diabetes

diabetes-kitTravelling with diabetes requires extra preparation to ensure your trip goes as smoothly as possible.

Before You Travel

Visit your primary health care provider (i.e family doctor) to discuss your travel plans:

  • Ask for extra prescriptions and a letter explaining that you have
  • Obtain any necessary documentation required to travel with medications and/or syringes
  • Talk to you health care professional about adjusting insulin doses if you are switching time zones
  • Learn key words in the local language: “ I have diabetes”, “Where is the hospital”, “Help me please”
  • Inform the airline, hotel or cruise ship of dietary restrictions

Remember to Pack

  • List of current medications
  • Your primary health care providers’ business card
  • Medications, syringes and glucose monitoring devices into your carry-on
  • Some fast acting glucose in case of a crash in blood sugars (e.g. Gatorade or hard candies)
  • Some comfortable and thick-soled shoes so you can remain physically active

Dealing with Airport Security

  • Inform security that you have diabetes and medical equipment with you
  • Ensure that all medications and supplies have prescription labels
  • Request a visual inspection of your insulin pump; if you are using one
  • Verify with the airline, travel agency or screening officers for applicable regulations

Dealing with Insulin while Traveling

  • Use 50% less air when following normal insulin injection procedure. Keep in mind that the air pressure on the plane is different than on the ground.
  • Store insulin below 25ºC; do not freeze insulin or place it in direct sun light.

Foot Care

  • Bring comfortable shoes,  socks and an emergency first aid kit to treat minor foot injuries
  • Do not wear open toe shoes, wearing sandals or flip-flops can increase your chance of injury and infection
  • Avoid blisters by changing shoes and protecting your feet; you should also wear water shoes while swimming

Source: Travelling with Diabetes.