You have a medication that’s going to expire while you’re abroad, so what do you do? Read on to learn 10 handy tips for refilling prescriptions abroad.
Traveling is a great experience everyone should try once in their lifetime.
But what happens when you travel for an extended period of time and need to have your prescriptions refilled.
In this guide, we’ll give you some tips on how refilling prescriptions while abroad.
Let’s get started.
1. Do Your Research Before You Travel
Before you start packing and set off on your trip, you should do your research regarding the country you’ll be traveling to.
While your medication might be legal in the United States, it might not be allowed in other countries.
For example, Adderall is not allowed in Japan, so you might get in trouble for having it.
In some countries, like New Zealand and Australia, they have pharmacist medicines. It means you only need to talk to a pharmacist to get medication.
2. Keep Your Medicine in the Original Container
Keeping your medication in the original container will not only facilitate you getting through security at airports, but it will help you get prescriptions refilled abroad.
For example, if you run out or there’s a delay, you might have a better chance at getting it refilled if you bring in the name of the medicine to a doctor or pharmacist abroad.
3. Talk to Your Insurance Company at Home
The best way to travel and not have to worry about your prescriptions needing refills is to bring more than enough with you in the first place.
But how can you accomplish this when your insurance doesn’t allow you to have more than the necessary.
Call your insurance company and ask them if you can get a vacation override exception. This will allow you to get a refill for up to 6 months at a time instead of only 3.
The vacation override will keep the terms of your insurance such as co-pay and cost.
Depending on your insurance carrier, this might take some time to process so don’t leave it to the last minute.
4. Leave Someone in Charge at Home
When you’re abroad you should leave someone at home as your contact person. This person should have the power to take care of your prescriptions should you need to refill them.
Make sure the person you leave in charge is a family member, a spouse, or someone you truly trust.
Even if they’re your immediate family, it’s a good idea to leave a power of attorney to allow them to take care of your prescriptions or act in your behalf in case of emergencies.
5. Speak to Your Doctor
Don’t go traveling without speaking to your doctor first. Tell your doctor how long you’ll be gone for so the doctor can work on getting you the right prescription.
If you know you’ll be traveling for longer than a year, your doctor might be able to give you a prescription that can be renewed automatically without needed another visit to see them.
Who knows, your doctor might be able to provide you with more tips for traveling with all of your medications.
6. Make a Trip to FedEx
If you’re traveling for an extended period of time or can’t get your insurance to sign off on a 6-month supply of your medicine, you will need your prescriptions sent to you.
The best way to ensure you get your prescriptions on time and intact is if you send them via FedEx or other secure carriers.
Either you should call or take a trip to the FedEx office and find out everything you need to know about regulations in other countries.
Remember, the package containing your prescriptions will have to go through customs.
It’s better to be informed from the start and avoid delays with your medication.
7. Get a Letter From Your Doctor
We already mentioned each country has different regulations. Some authorities want to be absolutely sure the prescription is for personal use and not to sell.
In order to avoid any hiccups, you should get your doctor to write you a letter stating the nature of your condition and which drugs you need to take for it.
Having a signed letter from your doctor might help speed things up if you need to refill your prescription while traveling.
8. Address Your Prescription to Your Contact Person
If you can’t take the sufficient quantities of your medication on your trip, then someone at home will probably have to ship it to you.
This is where that power of attorney letter comes into play. To avoid any delays, have the pharmacy should have your contact person’s name down and allow for them to pick up your prescription.
The last thing you want is to have any delays with your seizure medications because the pharmacy doesn’t have word someone else is picking it up.
9. Ensure FedEx Delivers at Your Address Abroad
The FedEx system might be different depending on where you’re traveling to. If you’re going to an extended visit to the countryside, you need to ensure FedEx or any other carrier will still be able to reach you there.
Contact your hotel or AirBnB prior to your trip to find out if you can have FedEx deliver there.
When all other options fail, see if you can have your prescriptions delivered to the local post office.
10. Can You Renew Your Prescription Electronically
Check with your insurance and your pharmacy and see if you can have the option to refill your prescriptions electronically.
If they don’t have this service, you might want to look into switching to an online pharmacy.
Online pharmacies might be able to facilitate the shipping of your prescription no matter where you’re traveling at the time.
You can leave it to them to deal with the logistics.
Refilling Prescription While Abroad: The Bottom Line
Refilling prescriptions while traveling abroad is not easy, but if you take the time to prepare, you shouldn’t have any problems.
Don’t forget to do your research, talk to your insurance, and get a letter from your doctor.
If you enjoy these tips and would like to learn more, visit our health section for the latest tips.