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9 Tips For Hassle-free Security Checks When Flying With Medication
Predeparture procedure; going through security with medication

9 Tips for Hassle-free Security Checks when Flying with Medication

Post Series: How to Plan a Rewarding Accessible Travel Experience

Medications and medical devices are allowed on airplanes; however, there needs to be proof of medical need.  Liquids are allowed and are not included in the non-medical liquid limits.  As each country has their own regulations, it is wise to check with each country you plan on visiting to ensure they approve of the specific medication, including some brands that we typically think of as over the counter medication.

Here are some tips:

  1. Have a letter from your physician on letterhead stating the need for all medications (prescription and over the counter).  Have prescriptions available to show at security if asked.
  2. Keep all medications in their original containers.
  3. Keep all medications in your carry on in case of lost baggage, lay over, or delays on the tarmac.
  4. Place your liquid medications in a plastic bag (separate from the ordinary liquids such as shampoo), which can be taken out of your luggage for inspection at security.
  5. Liquid medication, such as Insulin ,and syringes can be carried through security and on board.  It is wise to maintain insulin in a cool environment such as a gel-cooled container.
  6. As with any non-typical item, be prepared to explain to the security officer in front of you why you have your medication and it’s purpose.  This goes for pumps, liquids, or any other medically-necessary equipment.
  7. Keep in mind that the air pressure within the aircraft varies during the flight. This will affect air in syringes and amount of liquid measured.
  8. Have a prescription for your medications – to use in case you require more while away.  The prescription needs to have the generic name of the drug as well as the brand name as the medication may go under a different brand depending on the country.
  9. Take 1 ½ to 2 times the amount of medication required for the length of your trip to ensure you do not run out but not more than necessary.  Depending on the country visited, there are different limitations on the amount of medication allowed to be brought in to the country before authorities may consider trafficking in medications.
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