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How do I travel abroad with prescription medications?


Dear Editor,

What are your recommendations for traveling abroad with prescription medications?

– Reader

Dear Reader,

The U.S. Department of State recommends that you keep your medications in their original containers with the proper labels and bring copies of your prescriptions to avoid trouble with customs officers and other officials. The prescription should note the brand and generic name of the drug. You should also contact the embassy or consulate of the country you’re visiting to find out if it’s legal to bring your particular medication into the country. If you’re taking an unusual drug or drugs that contain narcotics such as sedatives, you should carry a note from your doctor explaining what the medication is and why you need it.

AARP Pharmacy Services also suggests bringing your medication in your carry-on bag so that you’ll still have them even if your checked bags are lost. Make sure you bring enough medication to get you through your entire trip, along with a few extra days supply in case your departure home is delayed. You should bring your doctors’ contact information and extra written prescriptions with you in case you need to resupply while abroad.

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