As life starts to go back to ‘normal’ and the world opens up again, you might be thinking about traveling. Perhaps you have family abroad, or maybe you’ve been craving a well-earned break somewhere sunny?
Planning a holiday should be an exciting time. However, when you’re living with a long-term condition like chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML), you might find travel more challenging. And there’s certainly a lot to consider.
But the good news is that thanks to effective treatment, travel for people with conditions such as CML is much more achievable nowadays. Careful planning and good communication should help you feel more prepared and allow you to have a worry-free trip. [HEN19]
Before you book, talk to your doctor to check whether you’re fit to travel. Go prepared with a list of questions (See ‘Talking to your doctor’)
If you‘re undergoing treatment, check the rules around brining your medication into the destination country.[HEN19] Make sure you keep medicines in their original packaging and clearly labelled with what they are, and who they’re for.
If your medication needs to be kept refrigerated, check with the airlines before you travel to see what their guidance is.
Finding good insurance at a sensible price can be a challenge, but it’s important that you are covered, especially at the moment, with COVID-19 travel restrictions making last-minute cancellations more likely.
When applying, be open and honest about your health. Health problems are known as ‘pre-existing conditions’ and need to be declared when buying a new policy, to ensure you’ll be covered should the unexpected happen.[HEN19,FEL20]
Shop around for the best price. Consider using a company who specialise in insuring people with medical conditions, as they are more likely to understand your needs.
And with plenty of thorough planning and preparation - you can relax and enjoy your trip!
[BCUK] Blood Cancer UK. Staying Safe. Available at: https://bloodcancer.org.uk/understanding-blood-cancer/blood-cancer-staying-safe/. Accessed November 2021.
[FEL20] Felkai, P.P. How to Travel After the COVID-19 Pandemic? International Journal of Travel Medicine and Global Health. 2020; 9(1):1–3.
[HEN19] Heng, S., et al. Traveling With Cancer: A Guide for Oncologists in the Modern World. Journal of Global Oncology. 2019; 5:1–10.