Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Africa & the Middle East
Reload this Page >

Do medications need to be in their original containers?

Do medications need to be in their original containers?

Jan 26th, 2004, 07:05 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 38
Do medications need to be in their original containers?

Travelling with my mom from Toronto to Egypt, with layover in London. She heard medications need to be in their original containers when flying to they can be identified at customs. I haven't heard this before and was planning to put all meds in one small travel container. Anyone know about this? Any difference for prescription and non-prescription medications?
skidoo_chick is offline  
Jan 26th, 2004, 08:56 AM
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,501
Yes, regardless of where one is travelling, medications (whether prescription or over the counter) should be in their original containers to reassure customs officials that they're legal drugs.

In the case of prescription medications, it's good to carry a copy of the prescription (a) to assist in proving the legitimacy of the medication and (b) to assist in obtaining a refill or replacement of the prescription should that become necessary during the trip.
Judy_in_Calgary is offline  
Jan 26th, 2004, 10:26 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 987
In all my years of traveling, I've never been asked about medications. I've always read that they should be in their original containiers, but no immigration officer in Europe or Africa has ever asked me about medications.

But it IS important to carry them in your carry-on, not your checked luggage, so that they'll be with you even if your luggage isn't.
Celia is offline  
Jan 26th, 2004, 10:51 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 22,098
The official rule is that they need to be in original containers with pharmacy label. Most local pharmacies will, when prescription is filled, issue it in smallest bottle possible or split prescription between 2 bottles to save space. However, if you get your meds mail order or in larger quantities (like for 3 months at a time), this may not be possible.

While that is the official rule, I have never heard of anyone being restricted from bringing medications that were otherwise packed. Question has been asked here before. Still, I wouldn't risk it - that potential hassle is worth the slightly extra bulk of a few bottles.

As far as carrying a copy of the script, I see that as little use in a foreign country since it could not be legally filled off a foreign script anyway.

And as far as travel to Egypt, when we went 2 years ago we also brought a reasonable quantity of non-prescription medications such as pain/fever remedies, antacids, etc. Would not want to get a headache in Cairo and try to learn to read Arabic at the same time.
gail is offline  
Jan 26th, 2004, 11:09 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 38
Thanks for all your help! I'm so glad I asked, so I now I know to just bring all meds in their original bottles so there's no hassle. Thanks again!
skidoo_chick is offline  
Jan 26th, 2004, 01:08 PM
Posts: n/a
I have no idea how many bottles of scripted meds you're speaking of, but if only one or two, it shouldn't be a problem to pack these in their original containers from the pharmacy and taken with your mom in her handbag or carryon luggage.

That said, I have never, traveled with scripted or otc meds in their original containers. Everything is thrown into a single bottle and I'm off. To date, I have never been asked about my personal meds, whether in Europe, Caribbean, Asia, Middle East, or Africa.

Sure, there is always a first time, but it's a personal choice.
Jan 28th, 2004, 04:26 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 69
Definitely in original containers with the prescribed label - especially when arriving in Sydney - Australia.

Also you have to declare them as "drugs" on the declaration. We learn't the hard way. We thought they were referring to illegal drugs and almost had our stuff confiscated!
travellinbug is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:12 PM.