When diagnosed with a terminal illness there are all kinds of things that race through your mind. For many people, the urge to travel and visit friends/family, or a country they’ve always wanted to see tops the to-do list. Of course, before booking that ticket you will likely wonder if it’s possible to travel with a terminal illness. Let’s take a closer look.
Timing Can Make a Difference
If you have just been diagnosed so you aren’t yet enrolled or haven’t looked into hospice services, it’s likely time is on your side. The very first thing you want to do if you are considering traveling is to speak to your doctor. They will be able to give you advice on whether it is safe for you to travel. It may be that traveling by car or train is better than by air. Then again maybe flights will be just fine.
In order to determine if you're able to travel your doctor will look at such things as:
- How severe your symptoms are
- If you are stable
- How far the journey is, and how hard on you it will be
- If you are capable of looking after yourself still
- What kind of treatment plan you have
- What kind of healthcare the destination offers just in case you illness should worsen
- Whether or not you are traveling alone
- Whether the medications you are taking are allowed in the destination
Check with the Airline
For those who want to travel by air, getting the all-clear from the doctor is the first step. Next you will want to check with the airline about their regulations. Some airlines can refuse travel to those with a terminal illness. They often require medical clearance by the actual medical department of the airline. You want to get this all sorted out in advance so you don’t purchase a ticket and then show up and have boarding refused.
What About Travel Insurance
Just because you have been diagnosed with a terminal illness doesn’t mean you will automatically be denied travel insurance. In fact, there are many travel insurance providers that can provide you with insurance options. You can get coverage for such things as medical expenses while traveling, accommodation and travel expenses covered for you and one travel companion, cancellation protection, and more.
One thing to keep in mind is that travel insurance can be more expensive for those who have a terminal illness. You can always call around and get different quotes to compare them. As well, you may be able to customize the package, which allows you to adjust the price somewhat.
Plenty to Consider
While there is plenty to consider if you are thinking about traveling with a terminal illness, it doesn’t mean it can’t be done. The more time you can give to plan and ask all these questions the better, so you can ensure your trip is smooth and without stress.