Diabetes Travel Tips
Want to get away? Managing diabetes while traveling doesn’t have to be stressful. Proper planning before you leave can help you prepare for and safely enjoy your dream travel destination. Here are some travel tips:
- Visit your doctor for a checkup and ask them to provide prescriptions and vaccinations, as needed.
- Have your doctor write a note explaining you have diabetes, with a list of medicines and devices you need to manage your diabetes. Keep this with you when traveling.
- Find out where you can get diabetes supplies, as well as locations of healthcare centers at your travel destination.
- Confirm you have insurance that will cover any illness during your trip. Consider getting travel insurance.
Packing for your trip
- Pack all your diabetes supplies in a carry-on bag including: medications, blood glucose meter, extra batteries for meter, test strips, and lancets; pack twice as many supplies as you think you’ll need.
- Pack some snacks and a fast-acting source of sugar (hard candy, glucose tablets) to treat low blood glucose.
During your trip
- Wear or carry a medical ID that shows you have diabetes. Let others traveling with you know you have diabetes and how they can help in case of an emergency.
- Wear comfortable clothes and shoes and check your feet every day for blisters, cuts, redness and/or swelling. Take care of any issues and seek medical help if needed.
- Always carry snacks with you to help prevent low blood sugar in case meals are delayed and/or you’re more active than usual.
- Stay as close to your usual routine as possible: eating, taking medicines, testing your blood glucose and sleeping. Be careful with unfamiliar foods (ask about ingredients) and drinks, including tap water overseas.
American Diabetes Association. (ADA) – Family Link ENews. Tips for Traveling with Diabetes. Accessed online April 7, 2022
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (CDC) – 21 Tips for Traveling With Diabetes. https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/library/features/traveling-with-diabetes.html. Accessed online April 25, 2022
American Diabetes Association. (ADA) – What Can I Bring With Me On The Plane. https://www.diabetes.org/tools-support/know-your-rights/what-can-i-bring-with-me-on-plane. Accessed online April 7, 2022