Image by Whity via CC BY 2.0 License
Image by Whity via CC BY 2.0 License

Please note that all of these answers are simply a rough guide, and it is imperative to check with both your doctor and your airline before flying with any sort of medical condition. For more on what you can bring on an airplane with you, check out our hand luggage rules guide.

 

Can you take medication in your hand luggage?

 

Generally speaking, you can take medicine you take in your hand luggage if it is in either powder or tablet/pill form, but it is imperative to have it clearly labelled.  Additional limitations may apply to some medicines and you should check official advice before travelling.  Some medicines may not be legal in all countries, or may require an official letter or prescription from your doctor.  If your medicine is liquid and is in a container over 100ml, you must have an official letter from your doctor. If you are concerned about taking medication on a plane, speak to your doctor and/or pharmacist about it.

 

Can you take an inhaler on a plane?

 

Yes, you can take your asthma inhaler in your hand luggage, but all spare canisters must be packed in your hold luggage.

 

How do I know if I am fit to travel?

 

The best way to determine if you are fit to fly is to speak to your doctor about your ailment or condition. If he or she deems that you are fit to travel, he or she may provide you with a “fit to fly certificate” or “fit to fly letter” that you can show your airline if necessary.

 

For more information on being fit to fly, please check out the NHS travel health website.

 

Can you fly after an operation?

 

Whether or not you can fly after an operation or how soon you can fly after an operation is all dependent on your doctor’s advice. Certain operations will require longer healing periods, so it’s imperative to speak to your surgeon before flying.

 

Can you fly while pregnant?

 

Click here for information on flying when pregnant.

 

Can you fly with chickenpox?

 

If you or your child have chickenpox, you may not be allowed to board the aircraft. The airline you’re flying with has the right to deny travel to any passenger who is unwell and/or contagious. It is best to check with your airline directly regarding their policy on flying with chickenpox.

 

Can you fly with a fever?

 

It is always best to check with your doctor before flying if you have a fever, especially if it is a high fever. Airline staff have the authority to deny boarding to anyone who doesn’t seem well enough to fly.

 

Can you fly with pneumonia?

 

Most doctors recommend putting airplane travel on hold if you are suffering from pneumonia, the reason being the changes in the oxygen and pressure levels in the cabin. It is imperative to speak to a medical professional before flying with pneumonia to determine whether you are healthy enough to fly.

 

Can you fly with an ear infection?

 

It is advised to avoid all air travel if you or your child is suffering from an ear, nose, or sinus infection. This is because the changing levels of air pressure that occur in an airplane cabin can affect the infection and possibly even cause swelling, bleeding, severe pain, or a perforated eardrum. Always speak to your doctor before flying with an infection of any kind.

 

Can you fly with a cast?

 

It is imperative that you check with your doctor and your airline before flying with a cast.  This is due to the risk of swelling after a cast is fitted. You can find more information from the NHS here.

 

If your entire leg is in a cast, meaning you can’t bend your knee, of if you have another type of cast that will prevent you from sitting upright in an airplane seat, you must contact your airline before booking your ticket or flying, as you may be denied boarding.

 

Can you fly with crutches?

 

Yes, you can fly with crutches, but you should inform your airline before flying. If you are using crutches, you will not be allowed to sit in an emergency exit row. The crutches must also be stored properly during the flight; ask a flight attendant for help.

 

How soon can you fly after a stroke?

 

Please check with both your doctor and your airline before flying after a stroke.

 

Can you fly with a pacemaker?

 

If you have a heart condition, you should check with your doctor before making travel plans.   If, after having checked with your doctor, you are flying with a pacemaker or ICD, make sure to carry your device identification card with you and tell the airport security staff about your device, as it may set off the metal detector. If you would prefer to be searched by hand, ask the airport staff not to place the metal detector directly over your device. For more on travelling with a heart condition, you can have a look at the NHS website.

 

Can you fly with a cochlear implant?

 

You should check with your doctor and the airline before making travel plans if you have a cochlear implant.

 

Can you fly if you’re visually impaired?

 

Yes, you can fly on an airplane if you’re visually impaired. It is best to alert your airline as far in advance as possible so that they can arrange for a member of staff to help you through security, at your gate, and onto the airplane. Once onboard the plane, the flight attendants can help you with any of your needs.

 

Can you fly if you have epilepsy?

 

 

You should check with your doctor before making travel plans if you have epilepsy and if you then fly, you may want to tell the airplane’s flight attendants about your condition. For more on travelling with epilepsy, click here.

 

Please note, the information contained in this blog post is based on the best of our knowledge as at the date this post was created and is provided for your information only. It is not to be relied upon as reflecting the policies of all airlines and you should therefore refer to the policies of your airline before booking your flights and travelling.

 

This article contains general information and opinion about travelling and is not medical advice.  Check with both your doctor and your airline before flying with any sort of medical condition.

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