What medicines should you pack for summer holiday travel? Here's what doctors take

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Basic travel health kit

The exact contents of your travel kit will depend on your travel plans. It is always advisable to check with your doctor first and also consult if any condition should persist after 24 hours.

First aid kit

A basic first aid kit includes:

  • antiseptic (betadine, clorhexidine)

  • painkillers (ibuprofen for pain and inflammation/swelling, paracetamol for pain and fever)

  • wound-cleaning gauzes

  • bandage tape

  • plasters

  • tweezers

  • scissors

  • thermometer

  • antihistamines (cetirizine) and decongestants

  • sunburn treatment (including cream eg furacin)

  • insect repellent

  • insect bite treatment (steroid cream, eg tisuderma). Check with your doctor if the area gets hot, red and spreads outwards.

  • medication for pre-existing medical conditions

  • medication for nausea (metoclopramide, primperan, gravol)

  • medication for diarrhea (fortasec, imodium pepto)

  • re-hydration sachets (saline)

  • antibiotics/antifungal medication: it is always best to consult your doctor before taking this type of medication due to resistances, secondary effects and adequate/personalised use of medication.


The sunscreen label should have:

  • the letters "UVA" in a circular logo and at least 4-star UVA protection

  • at least SPF15 sunscreen to protect against UVB.

  • SPF50 is recommended.

For country-specific health and safety advice, go to: 

Contact Dr. Victoria Howe, our English speaking doctor in Barcelona (Spain), for both office and online consultations.