Leaving for Paris Monday morning and I’m finally excited!
I just found out that lithium batteries aren’t allowed in checked baggage (too bad I over stocked “bought 8”) and so will only take 2 in my carry-on bag…
I bet you’re thinking now what does this has to do with diabetes or traveling or even OCD!
Wait for it…
I just realized that one of my checked bags is only for my diabetes supplies; cartilages, infusion sets, alcohol swaps, skin-tac, uni-solve, Dexcom transmitters, test strips, lancets, and I may have put some books in there too.
I made sure to take more than enough infusion sets and cartilages in my carry-on and I still don’t feel safe enough (I may have attachments issues lol)
I feel like I’m missing something! I just wanna keep everything near me which is impractical and just crazy! Even when we used to go on road trips I’d always choose the back seat because then I’d be closer to my stuff! I know its crazy but I don’t think I was always this way. I used to never even carry any bag with me lol… Now I CAN NEVER GO ANYWHERE without my meter or my glucose tablets.
How about you guys? How do you usually pack? How do you feel about packing for diabetes supplies?
Well, some of this just comes natural, after all you do wanna stay healthy and be able to enjoy your trip!
where are you coming from and how long are you gonna stay, if i may ask?
it might be helpful to you if you stay longer to connect with the french DOC on twitter (hashtag #frdoc ), so that you have some calm nerves in case anything goes wrong, they might be able to help you. i am also not so far from france (currently living close to the border in Switzerland).
what usually calms my nerves is some good old levemir, if i go on a long trip, to know that if everything fails, i still have MDI
also, one of the first things i do if i get to a new place is to find out where the next pharmacy is, LOL
just in case
have a safe trip
dont scare her more than she already is!
i usually spread my d-stuff over as much luggage as possible. that way, if one bag gets lost, i still have some stuff. and i also think that she takes some stuff in her carry on, just not everything. i have a friend who came here to switzerland for 3 months last fall (from the U.S) and she also checked in a whole bag of supplies, just because you need so much that you cant keep all of it in the carry on.
@swisschocolate Angela love your username!
I’ll be coming from San Francisco and I’d be staying for only 10 days then I head to Saudi Arabia for two months and a half.
Sadly I don’t speak French but thanks for the hashtag info and your kind reply.
@phoenixbound you’re funny! I wish I was brave lol thanks though. I can’t put all my 3 cartilage boxes + 3 infusion sets boxes + 3 Dexcom trasmitter boxes in my carry-on
Believe me I would if I could.
Angela’s idea is actually good (to spread everything in different bags just to be safe) not sure my sister has enough room in any of her bags anyway. I’m just glad we are finally done packing!
Selling “glucose tablets” to people who may experience hypoglycemia has always struck me as an amazing piece of marketing. Perhaps only surpassed by selling people bottled water. Hey, if it’s in a special bottle with a special label then it must be better suited for its purpose, no?
Yes — the answer is no, not really.
If you need glucose tablets while roaming about, look for any candy that has dextrose as the main/first ingredient and you’ll essentially be getting the same thing as what’s in the bottles … only in a possibly more palatable form, in my opinion. See, for example, this brief online comment from Gary Scheiner.
Certainly carry your tablets with you if they make you feel more comfortable. But I don’t think you would want to “waste” much space on items which you can easily purchase almost anywhere in the world if you need more.
By the way, how difficult is it to obtain those lithium batteries you wanted to take with you? Carrying a backup battery makes sense, but 8 of them?
How many years do you expect to be living out of a suitcase?
More seriously, what backup items and how many of them you take really depends both on the length of your trip and on what part of the world you would be travelling in. I’d pack differently for a remote village in a “less developed” country than I would for Paris.
When packing I think it is also important to plan ahead by thinking out how you might go about replacing something. Not that this is likely to happen, but it’s one way to prioritize so that you can carry more of what you are most likely to need and less of what you can probably easily replace while traveling should you need to.
For whatever it’s worth, here is a link to my version of the “backup” question from about three months ago.
Another version of this question was also asked in the discussion topic linked below.
Had my first trip abroad with a pump this spring. I always split my supplies in case my luggage gets misdirected or (god forbid) lost. So I have whatever I need for the travel day in my carry on PLUS some extras so I can manage for a few days if my main diabetic gear cache goes astray.
This was a lot easier on MDI. Extra infusion sets, insulin cartridges and god knows what-all–that stuff is much more bulky and puzzling to figure out how much and where to put it.
Only sometimes the stuff you assume you can get anywhere in the world, you can’t. Ran into this in the UK when I need to change my Dex sensor and couldn’t find the alcohol swabs I was sure I’d brought along. Guess what? YOU CAN’T BUY alcohol or alcohol swabs in Brit pharmacies. They just don’t have 'em. After looking in several places I ended up buying some other cleaner wipe, though I was annoyed b/c I wasn’t sure if it worked the same and wouldn’t leave some residue that might get on the sensor.
Likewise in Paris I had a low out on the street and spotting a pharmacy, ran in to buy some dextrose tabs, and they don’t have 'em or anything like. You’d think a pharmacy would at least know what you’re talking about when you’re having an “insulin reaction” but nope. Just finding a plain old hard candy, like Lifesavers, turned out to be surprisingly problematic. There are no simple candies anymore, apparently! At least there’s always Coke…
While probably any candy will work, my feeling is that some may be better than others in terms of how quickly they raise your BG. Hence, my link to the recommendation to look for tablets which are primarily dextrose.
My understanding is that the glycemic index of “sugar”, the primary ingredient of Skittles (?), while high is not as high as some other foods.
Yeah, and then there’s that. Another reason I would recommend becoming more familiar with the alternative packaging of glucose tablets as “candy”.
BTW, a bit of possibly ridiculous & sexist advice. I’ve heard it suggested that when looking for assistance in France, if possible, try to approach someone of the opposite gender. No, seriously. It was on public radio so it must be … something …
@Anna6 the founder of #frdoc (Andrea Limbourg) actually speaks english fluently. so if anything goes wrong, she is a go to person
May i ask what you are going to do in saudi arabia? just curious
i guess you are more than prepared, so just relax and enjoy your trip!!
i still dont get what problem you americans have with glucose tabs. honestly. first i find out they taste disgusting over there (so i will DEFO bring my own if i ever come over), now i find out they are overprized? WTF is WRONG in that country here i pay like 3$ for a 200g package, which is about same prize as for any other candy…
anyway. have a nice evening with whatever hypo treat you choose
I don’t think I have a problem with them. It’s just that in my case the label on them reads “SweeTarts”. And yes, I suppose they are expensive. The last time I refilled it cost me around 25 USD for about 2,250 grams. Of course, they’re individually wrapped in rolls which weigh around 8 grams.
Taste is in the mouth of the … well, you get where I’m going with that.
If there is time for it and you haven’t already done so, I would suggest calling the 800 number for both your pump manufacturer and Dexcom and asking them what they would suggest you do if you have a problem while out of the country. I keep thinking, yes, you’re bringing extra CGM sensors, but who would you turn to for help if someone sits on your monitor and it stops working?
While it is unlikely that anything will actually go wrong, my guess is that asking ahead of time and having some idea of how things might work when you are out of the US would be less stressful than trying to figure out how to ask for help when actually outside the US.
It’s always better to try to think these things through while you’re not stressed than after something goes wrong. (Unless you’re like Jason Bourne and you get calmer the more stressful a situation is. )
Wish I was calm not sure I am not even remotely lol
I do have a loaner from Animas and since I have the Vibe I don’t have the receiver so I should be good with the loaner. I made sure to request supplies for 3 months and I got them all -i think-
Unfortunately, Dexcom and Animas do not ship internationally so in case I needed anything I’d probably have it shipped to a relative in the US and have them ship it to me.
Hoever, you do have a valid point, I’ll call and ask if I can still call the 800 internationally in case I needed help troubleshooting any of my devices.
I tend to get a few of those “transmitter failed” and ??? whenever I put a new one.
Thank you for your concern.
You guys have been more than helpful, much appreciated!
I was out of the US (or at no fixed address) for most of 4 years, and this is similar to what I did as well. I also had my items sent to friends who were scheduled to visit me and they just brought my supplies along with them.