Preparation is key to travelling with allergies, and can alleviate anxiety around visiting an unfamiliar location, even if your allergy is serious. Plan well with these travel tips."> Preparation is key to travelling with allergies, and can alleviate anxiety around visiting an unfamiliar location, even if your allergy is serious. Plan well with these travel tips." /> Preparing to Travel – Allergy Medical Group - A dedicated allergy clinic committed to comprehensive patient care.
 
 

Preparing to Travel

26 Nov 2016

 

Part 1 – Travelling with Allergy

We all love holidays with family and allergies shouldn’t hold you back. With holiday season upon us read our series on advice for travelling with allergies and enjoy healthy happy holidays.

Preparation is key to travelling with allergies, and can alleviate anxiety around visiting an unfamiliar location, even if your allergy is serious. Plan well with these travel tips:

  • Make sure you’ve got all of your documents and medication in order before you go.  It is better to be prepared, than having to arrange in a foreign country where access to medical care is limited.
  • Visit your doctor before your trip and request a letter about the medications you carry, and make sure all of your prescriptions are up to date. If you’re seeing us about your travel plan we can provide this letter.
  • Pack your ASCIA or Asthma Action Plan and ASCIA Travel Plan. These Action Plans give you permission to carry an EpiPen on a plane, and detail what to do in an emergency. Asthma plans and ASCIA anaphylaxis first aid are also available in other languages. Be sure to pack your medications and prescriptions in your carry-on luggage also and keep them on your person at all times whilst in transit.
  • If travelling on a plane, always make sure you have at least two EpiPens with you on the flight, under your seat and not in the overhead compartment (so you can reach them with your seatbelt fastened). Having two EpiPens on you all the time is important in case of any errors or fault in using the device. In some cases a second dose could be required. 
  • Ask your doctor about a flu vaccination before you travel.  Respiratory infections can cause a flare in asthma. 
  • Contact your airline in advance to ask about their policy on food allergies and ask them about ordering special meals.
  • Whilst it is important to be cautious when eating, there is evidence to suggest that the risk of serious reaction through inhalation is very low whilst flying, even in people with severe nut allergies. Inhaling (thereby ingesting) a dose of an airborne allergen is very unlikely on an airplane because there is little recirculation” and commercial jets are required to frequently refresh the cabin air and subject it to HEPA filtration and there is no evidence to show that peanut or tree nut circulates in the air, as opposed to it quickly settling on surfaces.”(1) There is potentially more risk from surfaces, so make sure you wipe down surfaces with a cleaning cloth and avoid using the airplane supplied pillows and blankets. Always have your EpiPen on hand, just in case.
  • Check out your health insurance policy. Some travel insurance policies don’t automatically include those at risk of anaphylaxis.
  • You may want to consider self-contained accommodation, to allow you to prepare some of your food yourself. Or check out Air BnB opportunities to really get to know the place you’re staying and explore local, fresh produce outside of the usual tourist traps.

You should now be fully prepared for your holiday! If you would like more travel tips, head to the ASCIA website for a full checklist or call Allergy Medical Sydney on (02) 9096 2999 or Brisbane on (07) 3252 3711

Check back soon for the next part in our series on summer travel and allergy.
Part 2 - Travelling with Food Allergy
Part 3 - Allergy Travel Products
Are you Summer ready? Stock up on allergy essentials.