Traveling with Medications: How to Prepare

Discover a few secrets to simplifying traveling with medication.

For some, the comforts of home include having medications handy. But when it comes time to travel, it’s important that those necessities go with you. Here are a few ways to help make sure there are no bumps in the road.

• Plan ahead. Whether it’s a medication you take daily or one you need only in the case of an emergency, be sure you have what you might need. If necessary, bring prescription refills with you when you leave home. If you’re traveling out of the country, check with the American Embassy or Consulate to make sure you’re able to bring your prescription medication into the country you’re visiting. Bring a letter from your doctor describing your condition and any prescribed medications.

• Pack smart. Pack all medications in your carry-on bag. Use a small insulated cooler and ice packs when packing any medication that requires refrigeration. If traveling by plane, know that the Transportation Security Authority will allow you to bring unlimited quantities of medication in pill or other solid form through screening. While you’re also allowed unlimited quantities of liquid medications, items in excess of 3.4 ounces will receive extra screening. You should declare all medications and related supplies, such as syringes, to the TSA agent.

• Call with questions. The Transportation Security Authority has created TSA Cares, a helpline to aid travelers with disabilities and medical conditions. You can call their toll-free line at 1-855-787-2227 with any questions in regard to screening policies, packing medications, special assistance and more.

Need a checkup or a prescription refill before you leave home? Talk to your doctor. For help finding a doctor, use Medical Center Arlington’s online Find a Physician service or call us at 1-855-868-6262 for a physician referral.

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