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Diabetes

Travel

You are excited to be going on your holiday. You have your list of things to pack, but what about your diabetes? What do you need to take?

Many people find the following items helpful to take:

  • Extra insulin, needles, lancets/sensors (and consumables if on an insulin pump). It may be helpful to take a picture of these items on your phone
  • Hypo treatment
  • Ketone meter and strips
  • A copy of the sick day rules (this maybe a picture on your phone or a link to our website to access these anywhere - although you may need to enable data roaming)
  • A holiday letter (contact us for your copy) along with a copy of your most recent repeat prescription
  • A FRÍO® Pouch to help keep your insulin cool. These are available from multiple outlets

If you are flying, please carry everything in your hand luggage and share between multiple passengers in case one of the bags goes missing.

Additionally, some airlines allow you to have extra baggage - so give your company a call to see if you are entitled.

You may also need to consider time zones and climate, as this may influence when you need to give your background insulin and how you absorb it.

Read our Diabetes and Travel leaflet

Many people use technology to support managing their diabetes but there can be restrictions in airports such as X-rays and body scanners. Please contact the manufacturer of your device or visit the Civil Aviation Authority website for further guidance.

If you are on an insulin pump you will need the following additional items in case your pump fails:

  • A copy of your insulin pump settings and insulin to take via pens
  • Spare background and quick acting insulin pens
  • Contact details for the pump manufacturer

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your diabetes specialist for more guidance.

You may also find the following YouTube video: Type 1 Diabetes, Travel and Holidays useful.

Remember, many countries measure glucose levels in different values, for example mmol/dL in comparison to mmol/L (in the UK). If they do measure your glucose levels oversees, and it is in the 100s, don't panic - it is because they use a different value.

Page last reviewed: 3 January 2023
Next review due: 3 January 2026