Taking an Airplane with an Ostomy: What To Expect And How To Prepare

For people with an ostomy, life doesn’t come to a grinding halt just because they’re planning a vacation. Fortunately, many tips and tricks can make traveling with an ostomy much easier. Check out these tips so you can start planning your next trip.


If you have an ostomy, traveling can seem like a daunting task. But with a bit of preparation, it can be a breeze! Here are some tips to get you started:

Packing List: Be sure to pack enough ostomy supplies to last the entire trip, plus a few extra in case of emergencies. Include the essentials like ostomy bags, barrier film wipes, skin barriers, stoma powder, additional seals, ostomy paste, odor management products, ostomy scissors, medications, gauze, sterile wipes, and hand sanitizer, ostomy belts, disposable bags, gloves, and toilet paper.

Pack a Separate Bag: Consider packing your supplies in a separate bag from the rest of your luggage so they’re easy to find if you need them.

Have Travel Insurance: Make sure to purchase travel insurance before your trip. This will give you peace of mind in case something happens and you need to cancel your trip or if you have any issues while on your trip.

Travel Communication Card: You must have a free travel communication card to show security personnel and airline staff. The card has a space for you to write down your personal information and your ostomy-related needs.

Travel Day

Here are some tips that you must follow on a travel day:

Arrive Early: Arriving early at the airport will help you avoid the stress of rushing and make security go more smoothly. It will also give you time to find the perfect spot for your ostomy before you get settled on the plane.

Keep Your Bag with you: When you have an ostomy, it’s essential to keep your carry-on close. If you need to use the restroom or change your ostomy, you can do so without asking for help. Plus, having a spare ostomy bag in emergencies is always good.

Avoid Irritating Foods and Drinks: Avoiding irritating foods and drinks will help you stay comfortable and avoid unwanted surprises.

Here are some tips for avoiding irritating foods and drinks:

  1. Stick to bland, easy-to-digest foods.
  2. Avoid spicy foods, as they can cause inflammation and irritation.

Ostomy Tips to Travel Easily

Know Bathroom Locations: The first thing you should do is research the bathroom situation. This is especially important if you have an ostomy because you’ll need to know where the nearest bathrooms are.

Water Activities: You can use barrier strips or ostomy belts as needed, especially if that makes you feel more comfortable. Make sure your pouching system is sealed before going swimming, and empty your pouch before swimming.

Stay Hydrated: Staying hydrated is essential for everyone, but it’s essential if you have an ostomy. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids and avoid dehydration by carrying a water bottle. It is necessary to stick to your regular diet, as much as possible, while traveling. Eating unfamiliar foods can sometimes lead to digestive issues, so it’s best to stick to what you know.