How to Prep for Air Travel with Type 1 Diabetes

How to Prep for Air Travel with Type 1 Diabetes

There are some special concerns for a diabetic when traveling, and there are some appropriate ways to address those concerns. When flying a diabetic has to consider TSA or security checkpoints in airports and the regulations that they have in place. It is important to always declare to the checkpoint guards that you are a diabetic and you carry syringes and a pump for this reason. If you are in a foreign language speaking country make sure to write these details down simply in that language on paper to show the guards, and also remember to keep all of your necessities in your carry-on luggage bag, as check-through luggage can be lost by the airline and would cause you to be without your medicines. Another smart thought is to have back-up supplies with a friend and a ready-to-ship FedEx box back at home, in case of an emergency event where you do lose your medicines. Writing down in list form your medications is good for anyone diabetic or not in order to inform others of your needs. And finally it is crucial to remember when abroad that they use different measuring systems and will most likely use mmol/L to measure blood sugar as opposed to the US meter of mg/dL.

Key Points:

  • 1As a type 1 diabetic, traveling, it’s important to stay advised of regulations, regarding traveling with medication and equipment.
  • 2Carry a physician’s letter and another letter, detailing your condition and your needed supplies in the language of your destination, when traveling outside the country.
  • 3Always have a list of medications and contact information and leave a Fedex box with supplies, in the event of an emergency that leaves you without needed items.


While it is generally considered safe to put your insulin, insulin pump, CGM receiver, and medicines through x-ray devices, the alarms may trigger with your pump.