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Difficulty bringing in mass amounts of prescriptions on RTW??

Littlemustard

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  • Added on: January 9th, 2008
Recently it's been discovered that I have an autoimmune disease and hypothyroidism. I have to take hormones everyday or else i feel like crap. The hormones are fantastic and there is no way i will even consider not bringing them. We are planning on heading out on an open ended RTW - with only a loose itinerary. I will have at least 12 - 18 months of hormones (pills) with me. Has anyone ever experienced a problem with this at customs? We'll be hitting up typical travel spots and off the beaten path spots. I plan on bringing a letter from my Dr. I just don't want anything to happen since I cannot risk having them taken away from me. Also, what if the customs agents can't read the letter since it will mostly be in English?

Has anyone had this type of problem and what did you do about it?

p.s. I can't just buy the pills on the road since there are many different strengths and I need to make sure I have the correct one.

travelclown

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  • Added on: January 9th, 2008
Hi there,
I'm not sure that it's a good idea to bring medicine for your entire time on the road. Heat and humidity can do a lot of damage to pills and backpacks aren't exactly cool places. Some of my pills just crumbled in my hands after my month in India (o.k. it was in July but still...)

Depending on where I was going and on the type of medicine I had to take, I would probably bring something like a six month supply and then somehow arrange for my mom to renew my prescription and send me some more while I was on the road.

But if you do decide to bring a year's worth, just know that it probably won't be as efficient near the end of your trip. You should talk about it with your pharmacist...

Also, having medicine with you shouldn't be a problem at customs, it never was for me. It's having a LARGE quantity of it on you that might cause a problem. That's what I would be afraid of anyways. So make sure you carry a letter from your doctor and copies of your prescriptions.

I used to worry a lot about traveling with injections. I had to carry a big isolated lunch bag with ice packs in it and it was full of seringes filled with medecine. But surprisingly, when seeing what I was carrying most officers at customs and security check points wouldn't even blink... Only once was I asked to open my bag and show my papers. It lasted two minutes...
Don't worry too much about it. You'll be fine.
Good Luck!

Littlemustard

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  • Added on: January 10th, 2008
wow - thanks for that! I never even thought about the effect on the pills themself but that is an excellent point! I thought of having someone one send me a supply but I was worried about the possibility of it getting lost in the mail and or not reaching me. Have you ever had anyone send you medication overseas? I guess it is probably worth it to expedite it.

travelclown

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  • Added on: January 10th, 2008
quote:
Have you ever had anyone send you medication overseas? I

No... My trips have never been long enough for that.. (unfortunatly!)
But I understand your fears and if I were you, I wouldn't have my medicine sent through regular mail.
Before my departure, I would check with postal services and see what could be done (registered mail or something...) AND I would check with private companies like UPS or Purolater...

But first, since I'm no expert, check with your pharmacist and see what he/she thinks... Maybe he/she would have some suggestions...
Smile

whalewatcher

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  • Added on: January 11th, 2008
You should definitely use a specialist service. There are some international pharmacies in capital cities and it's possible that they can deal with prescriptions sent to them in advance and keep medication in store for you. It's worth asking!

WT

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  • Added on: February 5th, 2008
Yes I have brought medicine with me and I also had my mom send things to us here without any problems. We just sent it by mail and took a chance. So far nothing that has been sent to us has been lost.

We did have some problems with things sent to Amsterdam. They were just winter clothes & books and got there ( I sent by slow method that is cheaper)but because it was sent to a company they charged a fortune for them. Once they do that there is not much of a way out of that,so we just bit the bullet. Gov't red tape and all, you know.


We also had no trouble so far in any customs with meds or anything else. Mail can take a long time to get to you, so be aware of that.
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Tarden

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  • Added on: February 22nd, 2008
It's important to know the chemical name of your medicines. I've had to buy prescriptions in countries where my brand name baffled the pharmacist but the chemical name made him smile and nod his head. Check with your doc.

Cheers, Greg

minerguy

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  • Added on: May 14th, 2008
Don't know if you have left yet, but I brought about 3 months worth of meds to SE Asia with me and nobody ever said a word. I had to get some sent to me once too which turned out to be a pain in the ass.

I was in Cambodia and had my parents pay extra to send it UPS instead of regular US Mail. I'd check their website and it appeared to go back and forth. UPS kept saying it was because of customs. Note they had said that there were meds in the package, if you don't say so it may be quicker, but could be rejected if they find them. It finally showed up about a week after I expected it and it was obvious that the package had never been opened during its transit so I don't know what the holdup was.

If I'd planned ahead a bit more I would have had them sent when I was in Thailand. It most likely would have been quicker and a lot cheaper. I had them sent right to the hostel I was staying and they had no problem with that. I actually took a side trip while I was waiting and they were there when I got back.

I wouldn't carry more than 6 months and 3 would be better because of the humidity and so on. Just plan ahead on what countries you will be in. Figure out when you will be in a big city, make reservations and ask if you can get something sent there. You could even look at calling a Marriott or somewhere you might have a bit more confidence in and get them sent there. Set up a reservation and cancel it if you have to.

Also get some sort of note from your doctor explaining your condition and what medicines you take. The more languages you can get it in the better. This will help if anyone asks or if you have an emergency on the road. Good luck!
Traveling by motorcycle to Alaska and beyond at BikeandBoots.com
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jordi182

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  • Added on: January 21st, 2009
i am about to go on a 2 month trip, and i am going to be using 'cooling wallets', i was recommended them and apparently they keep medication cool (so that it doesnt get ruined) without needing a fridge/freezer.

http://www.friouk.com/buy/

that's the website, i'd check them out if i were you!

triphealthy

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  • Added on: February 13th, 2009
I take 18 prescription medications daily and I travel constantly, especially abroad. The articles under the category medications on http://www.triphealthy.com have helped me enormously.
Wl

Jeanie99

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  • Added on: June 16th, 2010
My husband took a yrs medication with him when we went on our trip. Had a letter from his doctor saying the drugs were for his personel use, to be shown to customs if necessary together with a prescription just in case the drugs were lost. Always keep enough with you just in case your luggage gets lost. He did not have any trouble though it was a breeze.
Jean

Tortuga_traveller

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  • Added on: July 16th, 2010
I travel more than a years worth of asthma medication, and yes, some of the due dates are passed. I ignore it, because I can't afford to throw the medicine away. Besides, its foil wrapped, so neither air nor light can get to it.

NO one has challenged my bag of 8 or 9 asthma meds in all the time I have travelled, though I must admit I check them through, all but my current units.

I took a huge amount of Prilosec with me recently, and it wasn't questioned. Thats a good thing, for I found out there was NO prilosec in Peru to be found, to my chagrin.



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