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Before You Travel

Before You Travel

To help ensure that your flight with Emirates is as safe and comfortable as possible, please review the information below for passengers and medical practitioners.

A few practical suggestionsImmunisations
MalariaTravelling while pregnant
Travelling with newborn babiesTravellers with special needs
Medical conditionsTraveller’s Medical Kit

A few practical suggestions

  • Make sure you get travel insurance that provides sufficient cover for treatment and repatriation, particularly for adventure holidays, skiing and diving trips.
  • Plan to pack well. 2 lighter suitcases are better than 1 very heavy one as it may cause muscle injuries. Some countries have safety limits on what luggage handlers may transport.
  • Carry your regular medications in your hand luggage making sure you carry your prescriptions with you and a letter from your family doctor stating that you are on the medications for medical reasons. This is to avoid problems at Customs.
  • Check that there are no import restrictions on your particular medications in the country you are visiting (e.g., codeine when entering the UAE or stimulants such as pseudoephedrine when visiting Japan).
  • Plan to get a good night’s sleep prior to your flight as this has been shown to help to reduce stress and problems with jet lag.
  • Wear comfortable and appropriate clothing for the flight and your destination.
  • Arrive at the airport with sufficient time to check in and go through Immigration. Emirates requires passengers to be at the boarding gate 45 minutes before the scheduled departure time to ensure flights leave on schedule.

Immunisations

Although most travellers have already had vaccinations as children, they may still require boosters or new immunisations. Consult your doctor 4-6 weeks prior to travel (or shorter, if you are travelling on short notice) to see if you will need any vaccinations, or use our vaccination requirements finder for your itinerary. Remember to bring a copy of your vaccination records on your trip.

Malaria

You should also check if your destination is a risk area for Malaria and consider medications for malaria prevention which can be obtained from your doctor if required.

See the US Center for Disease Control’s world-wide searchable map to check destinations for malaria risk.

Travelling while pregnant

If you are pregnant and plan to travel once you have entered your 29th week of pregnancy, a medical certificate or letter signed by an appropriately qualified doctor or midwife is required, stating:

  • the confirmation of a singleton or multiple pregnancy
  • the pregnancy is progressing without complications
  • the estimated date of delivery
  • the date up to which you are expected to be fit to travel
  • that you are in good health
  • that there is no reason known to them that would prevent you from flying

Please note that if you choose not to carry a medical certificate, you may not be accepted for travel if there is any doubt about your ability to complete the journey safely.

If yours is a multiple pregnancy, no air travel is permitted after the 32nd week of gestation. For single pregnancies, travel after the 36th week of gestation will be permitted only after prior clearance is granted by the Emirates medical department. A medical information form (MEDIF) will need to be submitted for clearance purposes.

Thought should be given to whether the medical facilities at your destination country are adequate to cope with any problems which may arise. Sufficient travel insurance is strongly recommended in case of preterm labour abroad. It is wise to avoid travelling to remote locations whilst pregnant.

Some countries restrict or limit entry of non-national pregnant women. We recommend that you consult with the local consulate or embassy if in any doubt.

Heavy lifting during pregnancy should be avoided, so take care with your baggage.

Download a standard medical certificate for pregnant passengers (PDF)

Travelling with newborn babies

Air travel within the first seven days of birth is not permitted except when travelling for emergency medical treatment with an approved Medical Information for Fitness to Travel or Special Assistance (MEDIF) form.

Download a MEDIF form now (PDF)

Travellers with special needs

For information for passengers with special needs, including those travelling with a wheelchair or requiring the use of medical equipment, please see our special needs section.

Medical conditions

If you have a pre-existing medical condition such as diabetes, asthma, heart disease, epilepsy, or any other chronic disease, here are some steps you can take to remain healthy on your travels.

  • See your doctor at least four to six weeks prior to travel. Your doctor should make sure your conditions are well controlled and that any required prescriptions are up to date.
  • Ask your doctor for a letter describing any medical conditions you have and the usual treatments, including specific medications and dosages.
  • Bring adequate supplies of your usual medications and carry them in your hand luggage. Please note that we cannot refrigerate medicine for you. Please ensure that you arrange for any such medicines to be kept cool, either in a cool bag or vacuum flask.
  • Make sure your immunisations are up to date and carry your immunisation card with you.
  • Check your health insurance coverage to ensure you are covered for international travel, including repatriation costs.

Traveller’s Medical Kit

The following is a list of handy medical items to consider carrying with you on your travels. You can individualise this list based on your itinerary, your planned activities, and your medical history. Ready-made kits are also available from pharmacies and travel clinics.

  • Your regular medications (Remember, any medications carried overseas should be accompanied by a covering letter from a medical practitioner)
  • Vaccination certificate
  • Travel Insurance with medical cover
  • Digital thermometer
  • Analgesics (paracetamol, aspirin, ibuprofen)
  • Antacids
  • Topical antiseptic/antibiotic
  • Antihistamines
  • Dressings and adhesive bandages
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Malaria tablets, if prescribed
  • Sunscreen
  • Oral rehydration preparation