Travelling with your ADHD medication: The do's and don't's

  • Print

With many people gearing up to head overseas this summer, it's important to understand the rules around travelling with medication.

Here are some tips for you to consider before heading to the airport.

 

Understand the laws in your destination

While medication might be legal in Australia, it might be considered illegal in other countries. This could mean harsh penalties - even if you have a prescription!

It's a good idea to check the Smartraveller website which has lots of great links and advice if you plan on travelling with your medication, or a medical device, overseas.

You might also want to contact the consulate or embassy of the country you're visiting to understand what you can or cannot take with you.

Did you know: Dexamphetamine is banned in Japan, the United Arab Emirates, Bali and Thailand.

Take only what you need

It might seem easy to throw your bottle of pills into a suitcase when packing, however you can only take prescribed medication into another country if it's for personal use. Taking more medication than you need could therefore land you in trouble.

Did you know: An Australian man was recently detained in Bali for carrying Dexamphetamine. Even though it had been prescribed to him by his Australian doctor, he did not take a copy of the prescription or a letter from the prescribing doctor with him. He had also packed more than he needed for the duration of his trip. Read more about the story here.

Get a letter and play it safe

It can always be a good idea to check in with your prescribing doctor before heading overseas - whether checking for vaccination you might need, or if you have enough medication to last the duration of your trip. If you and your doctor are still unsure about whether you can take your medication with you, get a letter from them anyway to play it safe.

References & handy links

  1. Smart Traveller website:
    https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/before-you-go/health/medications   
  2. Dept Foreign Affairs & Trade:
    https://dfat.gov.au/about-us/foreign-embassies/Pages/foreign-embassies-and-consulates-in-australia.aspx 
  3. Dept of Health: 
    https://www.tga.gov.au/leaving-australia
  4. Dept of Human Services:
    https://www.humanservices.gov.au/individuals/services/medicare/pharmaceutical-benefits-scheme/how-to-manage-your-pbs-medicine-overseas