Travel Insurance for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Sufferers

If you are finding difficulty in obtaining travel insurance then Our Travel Insurance can help – we are specialists in providing travel insurance for those suffering with COPD. It’s important to have cover for COPD in the event that you get ill and require treatment while you are abroad, or you may even need to cancel your trip as a result of your COPD.

COPD travel insurance cover

Our Travel Insurance carry out online medical screening for COPD sufferers. Our online facility also offers a range of quotes from the UK's leading specialist medical travel insurance providers so you can choose the cover that suits you best. We offer no age limit on annual travel insurance and single trip travel insurance.


Since difficulty breathing is a major concern for COPD sufferers, many people affected by it may be reluctant to travel far from home. The key to travelling with COPD is in the preparation, particularly the use of oxygen. Therefore, last minute deals are not a good idea – you should plan your trips at least 4 to 6 weeks before you travel. Always seek medical advice before you book your holiday. Try to obtain the names of local doctors, hospitals, and clinics where you can get help if needed – your own doctor or healthcare provider may be able to help you here. Make sure the holiday providers at your destination understand your COPD and special requirements.

Fit to fly

Some airlines will require medical certificates confirming that you are currently stable and fit to fly – your GP can advise you on this. The amount of oxygen in an aircraft can be 15% compared to 21% on the ground. This fall in the level of oxygen can be quite dramatic for patients with COPD and can lead to increased shortness of breath, wheezing, light headedness, chest pain, and lack of oxygen as demonstrated by blue lips and/or finger nail beds. A fit to fly assessment can help identify those people who may suffer such symptoms.


You should always check specific airport and airline regulations on oxygen prior to travel and see if they will allow you to carry a portable oxygen concentrator on board. It may not be possible to take your normal oxygen on the flight due to a change of altitude and cabin pressure which increases the risk of any pressurized container exploding, but some airlines may provide supplemental oxygen. Book direct flights whenever possible as this eliminates the need to have oxygen during any layovers. Always be sure to arrive at the airport in plenty of time.

Drink lots of fluids

The air on the plane tends to be dry and the last thing you want is the lining of your respiratory tract becoming dehydrated. 


Check with your cruise company before you make your booking about your oxygen requirements. Provide the cruise line with a letter from your doctor. This should include a brief medical history, and ensure your doctor provides a current prescription for oxygen as well. Most cruise ships are accommodating as long as they have advance notice you will be onboard.

Travelling by car

You should keep the windows closed to avoid fumes from the traffic. Place your oxygen upright in the seat beside you. If you can, secure the unit with a seat belt. If you have additional oxygen units, place them on the floor behind the front seats. Plan your route for times when the roads won’t be too congested.


Check how much medication you will need to last through your trip. When possible, carry a water bottle with you so that you always have a drink available to take your medication. Remember you may need a Doctor’s letter to accompany your medication.

An adequate supply of oxygen

If you use oxygen, check if your current oxygen prescription needs to be adjusted for any extra activity. Your supplier may be able to provide you with compressed portable oxygen supplies for use in an emergency. Several oxygen-supply companies have outlets across the country and can arrange to have oxygen delivered to your destination when you arrive. Check how long your portable oxygen cylinder will last and know what to do in an emergency. You should always carry a spare oxygen cylinder in case of unexpected delays while travelling


If you wish to contact us about this policy or you have any other questions, please telephone us during office hours, 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, on 01592 858386 or click here to complete the contact us form ».

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