Travel insurance for those with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
Are you planning a holiday abroad? Will you need travel insurance to cover your COPD? At AllClear, we specialise in offering medical travel insurance which covers chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, also commonly known as lung disease. We also offer no age limit on single and annual multi-trip travel insurance policies.
Tips for travelling with COPD
Deciding on your destination
Breathing difficulties are a main characteristic of COPD and many people are often reluctant to travel far from home. The key is in the preparation, and carefully deciding on your destination is the first step to ensuring you have an enjoyable holiday.
Last minute holidays are not generally advisable, particularly if you use oxygen, and you should always seek advice from your doctor before booking your holiday. Your doctor should be able to give you tips for travelling with COPD.
Once you’ve decided on where to go, ensure you have the right facilities and a well-located room in your resort or hotel to save you having to walk further than necessary. Your holiday provider may be able to assist you with this.
It’s also important to tell your holiday provider, airline, and hotel about your COPD requirements so they’re able to make any arrangements to make your holiday a little more comfortable.
Booking direct flights and ensuring you arrive at the airport early will also make the journey as stress-free as possible.
Travelling with oxygen
Some people with COPD (or lung disease) may have to use portable oxygen when travelling. If you require oxygen, it’s advisable to check specific airport and airline guidelines. Your regular oxygen may not be allowed on board due to the risk of reduced cabin pressure causing your canister to explode.
Ensuring an adequate supply of oxygen
If you use oxygen, it’s important to ensure your current oxygen prescription is sufficient for any extra activity or excursions.
It’s also advisable to check how long your portable oxygen supply will last and what the procedure is in case of any emergencies. Your oxygen supplier may be able to provide you with an emergency supply of compressed portable oxygen and many suppliers often have outlets in other countries. It’s worth looking into scheduling a delivery of portable oxygen to your chosen destination, but it’s always a safe bet to carry a spare oxygen cylinder when travelling in case of any delays (this is subject to airline restrictions).
Travelling with COPD medication
When travelling abroad with any kind of COPD medication, you may require a letter from your doctor. It’s important to take more than enough medication for your trip in case of any delays.
Flying with COPD
Some airlines require a letter from a doctor confirming your condition is stable and you’re fit to fly. You should check this with your airline before travelling to ensure you’re fully prepared.
If you have COPD and love to travel, chances are you already understand the impact reduced oxygen levels have on breathing. The amount of oxygen on an aircraft is significantly reduced, which in turn means your body needs to work harder to take in the same amount of oxygen. This can potentially have a dramatic impact for those with COPD and you may experience an increased shortness of breath, wheezing, lightheadedness or chest pain.
Your risk of experiencing any of these can usually be identified through a High Altitude Simulation Test which can be conducted by your GP.
While on the airplane, it’s also important to drink plenty of fluids in order to ensure the lining of your respiratory tract is hydrated.
It’s important to have the correct holiday insurance to cover your COPD in case you get ill abroad and require medical treatment, or even need to be repatriated back to your home country. Our specialist travel insurance can also cover you if you need to cancel your trip due to your medical condition.
Our online medical screening process for people with COPD is quick and easy and allows you to choose the level of cover best suited to you.