A first aid kit is a must-have item when travelling, whether it is across state or international. When your doctor’s office is away, having a travel first aid kit with you is essential.
What Goes in Travel First Aid Kit
A travel first aid kit is an essential piece to have, but most travellers are unsure why they need to take it with them. It should contain the right items to take care of mild illnesses and injuries. It will include various things, but you do not necessarily need to take an entire medicine cabinet with you.
Access to medical care can be proven challenging when exploring some places. As any traveller or medical professional will tell you, things can go wrong on any trip, whether for camping, hiking, or doing some touristy stuff. Thus, taking a well-stocked first aid kit with you at all times is advised.
Here is an expert’s tip on what to keep in your travel first-aid kit.
Basic First Aid Kit
No travel kit is complete without these first aid basics:
- Antibacterial wipes or alcohol-based cleaner (items should contain 60% or more alcohol content for effectiveness)
- Assorted sizes of bandages to cover minor cuts and scrapes
- Elastic wraps for wrist, ankle, knee, and elbow injuries
- Gauze rolls in 2-inch and 4-inch pads to cover more significant cuts and scrapes
- Adhesive medical tape or strips to keep gauze in place
- Instant-activating cold packs for damages and burn relief. It can also be used in strains and sprains.
- Sterile rubber gloves to protect hands and reduce the risk of infection when handling bodily fluids
- Insect repellant (appropriate usage is no more than 10-15% for children and around 30-50% DEET for adults)
- Epinephrine auto-injector (EpiPen) for severe allergic reactions
- First Aid Tools
- Scissors to cur tapes, gauze, or clothes
- Tweezers to remove splinters, foreign objects, bee stings, and ticks
- Safety pins to help fasten splints and bandages
(Note: scissors and tweezers may not be allowed in a carry-on bag if travelling by air. See guidelines before flying.)
- List of prescription medications along with their generic names
- First Aid Manuals
- Regular medications you take at home. Bring enough medicine for a planned trip. It is best to take extra in case the return home is delayed or extended. Consider wearing a medical alert bracelet if you have diabetes, frequent seizures, known allergies, or other chronic conditions.
- List of emergency contacts, including your doctor, a trusted friend, or a family member.
When taking medication, be sure to follow the same precautions similar to what you have in your first aid kit. Use only as prescribed and approved by your doctor. Carry them in their original container and put clear labels to identify their name and schedule intake. Check expiration dates and throw away any expired tablets and ointments. Use safety caps, if possible, to avoid unnecessary spillage or giving small children unauthorized access.
If someone travelling with you has a life-threatening condition, make sure to carry appropriate medication at all times.
As any traveller or medical professional will tell you, things can go wrong on any trip, whether for camping, hiking, or doing tourist activities. Having a travel kit on hand will help you respond to common medical emergencies.
We also suggest taking a First Aid Class and learning different lifesaving skills. Learn CPR, wound management, asthma care, and many more.
Do not hesitate to call emergency services when you need it. If you are travelling with an elderly, a child, or even pets, it is essential to consider their needs.