Last week my BFF gave me a re-cap of her Holiday family cruise vacation. As fun as the first few days were, it quickly turned into a traveling family’s nightmare when her 4 y.o. son got sick at sea.
Harboring a 103 degree fever, she immediately realized that she’d forgotten the children’s Tylenol and wanted to slap herself for doing so. After finding the ship’s infirmary and speaking with the on board nurse, she knew that leaving the Tylenol was probably her biggest mistake. The nurse informed her that as soon as the doctor became available, he’d see her son and that the change would be $150! One hundred and fifty dollars – just in case you thought that was a typo. When she asked the nurse for a pack of Tylenol, little did she know she was about to embark on an at-sea treasure hunt.
She was given the run around for well-over an hour between the infirmary and the ship’s front desk until finally she raised her voice and got the attention she needed. That’s a nicer way of saying she “went Brooklyn on them.” Miraculously a packet of children’s Tylenol appeared at a whopping price of $9.00! “Huh? $9.00? For two pills?” That’s what I said when she told me. Of course she griped at the price in retrospect – in the heat of the moment, her only concern was getting my godson medicated.
So what gives? Why is Tylenol or any other medicine so expensive at sea or overseas for that matter (if you can find it)? Dare I say it’s not important – just don’t leave home without it? Yup, I think it’s fair enough to cut to the chase and bypass the why’s with this simple recommendation.
When you’re traveling outside the United States, purchasing medicines like ibuprofen, Tylenol, and aspirin can be expensive. They’re definitely line items on my packing lists. Other things like laxatives aren’t the easiest medicines to find in some foreign countries either. The physical stress of travel and a change in diet can cause bowel irregularities. If you’re prudent, you’ll also slip a few laxative pills, or better yet a cleansing tea, in your carry-on luggage. I learned the hard way when I was an exchange student in Florence, Italy. Not only were laxatives a challenge to find, when I did find some, I couldn’t translate the ingredients and side effects very well. BMs weren’t on my professor’s lesson plan for that year. Go figure.
So, here’s the deal. The following is a list of medicines you should strongly consider buying in trial sizes, and leaving in your luggage. This way you won’t forget them on your next trip:
- Tylenol, Aspirin, Ibuprofen
- Cold Medicine
- Allergy Medicine
- Bug Spray & Calamine Lotion
- Motion Sickness Medicine
What are some medicines that you carry regularly? Is this something you ever think about when you travel? We’d love to hear your thoughts. Happy Travels.