A first aid kit is a must for any traveller and there are plenty of “off the shelf” type kits that are great for most needs.
But there are specific items that may not be in your standard first aid kit that I always make sure are included in my kit.
Item 1 – Blister Pads
You never know when you will get a blister, even if you have worn your shoes a lot before travelling. Even when visiting cities we walk a lot and it is not uncommon for us to walk over 20km each day. I wear my favourite and most comfortable pair on shoes and still sometimes get a blister! Hence blister pads are a must in my first aid kit. I don’t have a favourite brand as long as they are blister pads and not the standard plastic or fabric strips.
Item 2 – Motion / Travel Sickness Medication
I don’t get travel sick very often, but occasionally I do. So no matter where we travel, we always have motion / travel sickness tablets with us. The two most recent times I have used them was on a ferry ride from Naples to the Isle of Capri in Italy and on our flight over the Nazca Lines in Peru.
We caught the ferry from Naples for a day trip to the Isle of Capri. It was a bit rough so I thought it was a good idea to take a travel sickness tablet. I’m so glad I did. It wasn’t so much the rough seas (that didn’t help) but fumes from the ferry engines were also really strong and I ended up spending most of the trip at the back of the boat in the rather windy fresh air.
We both also took tablets before flying over the Nazca Lines in Peru. To see the Nazca Lines you are on a small plane. The pilots point out each figure by tipping the wing so that you follow the wing and at the tip of the wing is the particular figure. The pilots then do a really sharp turn to point the other wing towards the figure so the people on the other side of the plane get to see it.
We had four people as well as the pilot and co-pilot on our flight. Three of us were travelling together and the fourth was a lady travelling by herself. She was sick pretty much from the time we took off until we landed and she used all of the travel sickness bags, with the exception of one. Even with travel sickness tablets, by the end of the flight I was starting to feel a bit sick. I wanted to make sure I had a bag, just in case. I was relieved when we landed and I had an empty travel sickness bag!
Item 3 – Anti-Diarrhea Tablets
You just never know when you are going to eat something that just doesn’t agree with you.
Item 4 – Headache Tablets
A headache can come on at any time. It’s common sense to carry them.
Item 5 – Electrolytes
We take electrolyte replacements with us if we are going to have an active trip (such a hiking the Inca Trail, through the Amazon or in New Zealand). Personally I find that they help with sore muscles after a day of hiking.
When taking any medical items or supplements into another country you need to check that they are legally able to be taken with you. Check out my previous blog on Travelling with Medication.