Thanksgiving is just around the corner, which, for many people, means there is traveling ahead to be with family and friends for the holiday. Did you know that Thanksgiving is actually one of the busiest travel holidays of the year, with over 44 million people on average traveling during the holiday weekend?
Travel can sometimes be stressful for everyone, but for people who use urinary catheters and carry catheter supplies with them, there is an added element to planning a trip that requires some forethought and organization in order to make the trip as successful as possible.
What Should I Do If I Have to Travel By Air?One of our employees, Bill, wrote a detailed blog post several years back that offers some great tips on what you should do if you self-cath and need to travel on an airplane. Just to refresh your memory, here are several important things to do:
1. Contact the airline before your flight.
The airlines are incredibly busy at this time of year, so you'll want to contact your airline as soon as possible once you've scheduled your flight. Ask the representative if they have any special procedures for traveling with catheters in your checked or carry-on luggage. In addition, it might be a good idea to make sure your catheter supplies and any other medical equipment or accessories meet the TSA guidelines, so there are no surprises when you get to the airport.
2. Know and follow the current TSA Guidelines for Liquids.
The TSA Guidelines have what is known as the 3-1-1 liquid rule. You are allowed to bring a quart-sized clear bag with liquid items, aerosols, gels, creams, and/or pastes through the security checkpoints in carry-on luggage as long as each item is 3.4 ounces or less. Make sure to pack your lubrication and any other liquid supplies in accordance with this guideline in order to avoid any hold-ups at the TSA checkpoints.
3. Be prepared to bring documentation if needed.
If you plan to pack all of your supplies in carry-on instead of checking any luggage, it's possible, depending on your supply type, that you might need to provide some sort of medical exemption or documentation from your doctor proving the necessity of your medical supplies, such as your catheters.
Other Tips to Keep in Mind
- Pack extra catheters just in case you are required to stay longer than originally planned.
- It's a good idea to pack at least a few days worth of your catheters and any other medically necessary items in your carry-on luggage, just in case your checked luggage gets delayed.
- Remember to use proper hygiene, especially when self-cathing in public bathrooms. Washing your hands and using antiseptic wipes and other insertion supplies may help reduce the risk of contamination or infection no matter where you are.
For other questions you may have about traveling with your catheters, contact our team of friendly, trained specialists at 1-877-688-2729 today.