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How to Travel with Prescription Meds

No one wants to end up short of essential medication 1,000s of miles from home. Nor does any traveler need the hassle of explaining to officials what their meds are for and that they are legal. Traveling with medication can be difficult but a few simple steps can ease the pain of taking prescription drugs abroad. Here’s how to make traveling with meds a breeze.


Before you travel, discuss your medical conditions and your need for medication with your doctor. There may be side effects associated with your drugs that you will only experience abroad, such as photosensitivity or an upset stomach. Take note of any precautions your doctor suggests you take. Also ask him or her to increase your prescription temporarily so you have a stockpile of meds to take with you. You may need more than you expect if your flights are delayed or you lose some.

Take an extra copy of your prescription in case your drugs are lost or stolen. Make a note, and carry it with you, of the generic name for your drugs as medication will be sold under different brands abroad.

Pack medication in original containers in your carry on luggage. If your meds are in liquid form that exceeds the quantities you can carry onboard you need to declare them as you pass through security. Check the rules for bringing your medication into your destination country. There may be limits to how much you can bring, and some prescription meds are even classified as illegal narcotics in certain countries. Make sure you have a signed doctor’s note stating the medications are for your own use and for the stated medical conditions. In this way you can avoid hassle at border control once you reach your destination. Check if you are ready for a your travel completely before you set off.

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