And just like that, summer holiday season is upon us! So, what better way to prepare ourselves for (fingers crossed!) a scorching hot summer ahead, than to know exactly what we need to pack in our suitcases to ensure we can put our Health and Wellbeing first whilst on our holidays!

That’s why, we’ve teamed up with friends of Paycare, Medstars, who have provided us a super easy first-aid holiday packing checklist, so we don’t have to worry about a thing while we are enjoying yourselves!


“There is always that one dilemma that comes around every year when it comes to holiday prep: what medicines and ‘first aid’ kit should you pack? Will you need plasters or medicine? What are you allowed to take? What will be available where you’re going, and what won’t?

So, we suggest a sensible basis for packing what you need.


Consider where you’re going.

There is really no need to take anti-malarials to northern France, but they are essential if you’re going to sub-tropical Africa. Check the health advice for where you’re going well in advance. NHS Choices is a good place to start.


If you’re on regular medication, take enough to last.

Whether its heart pills, an asthma puffer or hay fever tablets, make sure you are organised in enough time to get a repeat prescription if you need one. You really don’t want to be struggling to find a doctor who speaks English, or explaining to a foreign pharmacist that you can only use one brand of antihistamine. And if you need any emergency medicine, such as an Epipen, make sure it’s with you, and that your travelling companions also know where it is, and what to do with it.

It is also important to check local laws regarding prescription medication in your holiday destination and get a special permission letter from a doctor if required. For example, antidepressants are classified as restricted drugs in some countries – so be mindful!


Take at least some basic, everyday medicines.

Yes, basic medicines are available abroad. But, it’s going to be easier if you can manage without having to find a pharmacy. These might include painkillers and anti-inflammatories like paracetamol and ibuprofen, antihistamine cream and tablets, and anything else that you find you need fairly regularly.


If you can only use certain types of medicines or other healthcare products, take them.

Your child doesn’t respond to Calpol? Pack the ibuprofen. You’re allergic to plasters? Make sure you have an alternative. Again, it can be difficult to explain, and you can’t be sure that the alternative will be freely available at your destination.


Be prepared to deal with bumps and scrapes.

Antiseptic wipes, gauze, a bandage or two, plasters, micropore tape: they’re lightweight, don’t take up much room and could be the difference between dealing quickly with an incident, and a morning spent scouring the local town for a pharmacy. But make sure that you know how to use everything you take!


Have some anti-diarrhoea medicine and re-hydration salts.

Let’s just hope you don’t need either of these – but anti-diarrhoea medicine is good to have with you, just in case! Re-hydration salts are also helpful if you get a bit dehydrated, for example, by lying in the sun too long, and not drinking enough.


One Final Tip: Check the airline’s requirements on packing medicines

Last, but certainly not least – you may be specifically required to pack medicines in your suitcase or hand luggage, decant into containers or have them in the original packaging. Whichever, ensure you do so. It’s really not going to help if your first aid kit is confiscated at the airport.”


Wow! Thanks Medstars, some great check-list tips we can all take away with us this summer! It really is important that we remember to pack the correct medical necessities when we go on our holidays, all so we can enjoy ourselves even more!

We’re off to pack our cases – the holiday count down is ON!

Until next time… 😊


Remember, if you’re a Paycare Policyholder and are in need of seeking medical advice while you’re on your holidays, you’ve got access to our MyPocketGP App.
With worldwide cover you can speak to a UK based GP any time of day or night, wherever you are. This makes the service perfect for advice out of hours, peace of mind during the night, or when travelling abroad – perfect for your summer holidays!

Just remember, terms and conditions apply to all benefits covered on your plan.


Source: Medstars

Medstars is a curated community of trusted health professionals

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