How to prepare for travelling with an illness: 4 considerations

Travel is everything

Travelling with a partner with an illness has really opened my eyes to the precautions we’re made to consider before visiting a new country. In this guest post you can find  4 things that need to be taken into consideration before travel of any kind. These points are something we work through before each trip and we recommend you do too.

Travelling is undeniably one of the best things you could ever do. With so much to do and see in the world, there’s no reason not to – and that’s especially true if you’re suffering from an illness or disability, no matter how major or minor. There’s endless benefits to be drawn from travelling, with different countries able to teach you different things about history and general ways of life.

So, with that being said, it’s important you’re able to go out there and do and see it all. Here are four considerations to bear in mind to prepare for a stint of travelling whilst with an illness or a disability.


Liaise with your doctor beforehand


How to prepare for travelling with an illness: 4 considerations


Before you head abroad, make sure you pay a visit to your local GP to discuss just what precautions you’ll need to take depending on your illness. Some destinations may not be safe for you to visit, so it’s definitely worth making this one of your initial steps in planning your travels.

You may need special vaccinations or treatment before you leave in order to ensure you’re not susceptible to any further illness or other risks once you’re abroad – different countries harbour different threats to your health and safety which you need to be prepared for.

Even if no further treatment is required, it’s probably worth going in to have a conversation with your doctor anyway. They’ll know best when it comes to special considerations and measures you should be taking whilst travelling, from the plane journey to the actual destination itself. You shouldn’t have to miss out on something as wonderful as travelling due to illness – so head to the doctor and see if it’s possible.


Prepare for the plane journey


You may not think much goes into preparing for the plane journey, but you need to think about the things you’ll need to carry on board with you to make it more bearable or comfortable. Whether you’re ill or disabled you may require special considerations, which the airline should accommodate for – make sure you pass on any requests to the airline way ahead of time so they have enough time to prepare for you.

Whether it’s simple comforts such as pillows or extra legroom, or special considerations with food and allergies, be sure to make your needs clear to the staff in order to keep you as well accommodated as possible. You’ll need to ensure the plane itself is suitable for you, too – disabled toilets are not always found on board.

And, of course, be sure your illness is not a contagious one. If you’re posing a risk to other passengers it’s likely you won’t be allowed to board. Don’t be selfish – instead consider those around you and think about whether you’re suitable to board, or whether your illness could be spread too easily. It might be worth waiting until it’s over.


Make sure you know what you’re allowed to bring


How to prepare for travelling with an illness: 4 considerations


When travelling with an illness, you may need to bring certain things with you – medication or certain equipment to keep your health on top form are often required when heading abroad. However, with certain restrictions and security measures in place on many airlines – country depending – you’re going to need to ensure you’re packing the right things that won’t cause a problem.

Again, enquire with both your airline and your GP to see what you’ll need to bring travelling with you, and whether it’s suitable to bring. You don’t want to get caught out and potentially left at risk with no backup should you not be allowed to bring the necessities with you. Insurance with have provided a great guide to ensure you’re set to bring your supplies on board with you, getting them through customs with ease.


Choose a destination that’s suitable for you


How to prepare for travelling with an illness: 4 considerations


One of the most important preparations to make when it comes to travelling with an illness is choosing a destination that’s suitable for you. Ensure you’re doing your research to see where you’ll feel most comfortable – don’t pick somewhere that’s renowned for being hot if you know you’ll struggle in high temperatures, for example.

It’s also necessary for you to make sure your chosen location is accessible, both in terms of accommodation and the general area. Get in touch with your chosen hotel, resort, hostel or equivalent and make sure they’re aware of any considerations you need or queries you may have, as you’ll want to ensure your travels go as smoothly as possible and you’re as well accommodated as you can be.

Do you have any more tips or tricks for your fellow travellers heading abroad with an illness or a disability? Be sure to let us know in the comments below.

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