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Contact lens solution

I'm assuming I will be able to buy contact lens solution in Europe?? I'm going for a month and do not have dailies. Don't want to take big bottles of solution and was hoping to pick some up there.

Posted by
472 posts

The one time I had to buy some - my checked bag had gone on its own trip - was in Madrid maybe seven yrs ago & REALLY expensive. Maybe it's more widely available & cheaper now, hope so. All I could find then was Bausch&Lomb in an optician's, none to be had in pharmacies or supermarkets. I wear RGPs, & schlepp the solutions, c'est la vie. Maybe someone has more recent & better experience? Good luck! Vicki

Posted by
1194 posts

Dailies don’t come in my prescription so I’m stuck with monthlies. For my 5-1/2 week trip I took three 2 oz bottles of solution (Bio true) in my 3-1-1 bag. You could probably get away with just two bottles (4 oz total).

I also brought the following when I camped in the Andes:

  • individual packets of alcohol wipes. Great for those times you can’t get to clean water for washing.
  • a magnifying mirror
  • a small headlamp

I would put the mirror on my tent floor and shine the light up into my face. Then I could see to put in the contacts.

Posted by
59 posts

You can find contact solution everywhere in italy croatia bosnia Herzegovina france spain.... im forgetting where else ive been lol but if people wear contacts ...there must be solution near by. If you cant find it, try the pharmacy of wherever you are.
Maybe just take a small one for the first night or so. That way you dont have to rush.

Posted by
408 posts

In France, at least, some pharmacies carry solution and some don't, so focusing solely on pharmacies may not help you.

My wife wears contacts and she has found that the most reliable place to buy lens solution is at an optical shop that sells glasses and contacts. They're quite common -- a few chains you'll often see in cities and small towns are Krys, Optic2000, and Alain Afflelou.

Posted by
2768 posts

I would suggest bringing one travel size bottle (2 oz). That will get you through a good chunk of your trip and you can leisurely buy more when you see it. It is available but not everywhere and you don’t want to rush around in a panic trying to get it for that evening. Instead look when you pass a pharmacy or optical shop but don’t stress about it because you have enough. A 2oz bottle lasts me 2 weeks, I think.

Posted by
2632 posts

I have found that I get 8 nights' worth out of the 3 oz travel size of Renu or ClearCare, so one bottle goes in my 3-1-1 and another in my checked bag. I've never checked prices/brands in Europe but if you need it, you need it. Bring 1 travel size and that'll give you time to buy more.

Posted by
223 posts

I asked a TSA agent in the past about CL solutions, and they do not have to be in the 3-1-1 bag. They are regarded as medical. I take 3 small bottles and put them in a quart size bag with my RX eye drops. You do need to put them in the bin; not keep in your bag.

Posted by
135 posts

I use Clear Care and have run out on several occasions. Somehow my math didn't work out for how many small bottles to take with us so I had to purchase additional. I was never able to find the Clear Care brand in either Spain or Italy but did find something similar but only in an optometrist store and with the help of Google Translate. And, as someone else has mentioned, it was really expensive relative to what we pay in North America and only came in the large size. I'm going to check my math much more carefully this trip so I don't run out.

Posted by
11506 posts

medically necessary liquids,

As OP is ostensibly Canadian and going to Europe, USA TSA rules are probably irrelevant

Posted by
1194 posts

It’s pretty common on long trips to take multiple flights several days apart. TSA rules only work in the US. They won’t work if you need to take another flight mid trip.

I would suggest sticking to 311 bags, as contact solution isn’t considered medical in all countries. I found I used around 1 oz per week.

Posted by
546 posts

People all over the world wear contact lenses and the solution is available everywhere I have been...even Sri Lanka...so don’t worry.

It can be a bit pricier than home though.

Posted by
1221 posts

I wear RGPs and managed to find a bottle of cleaning solution at an ordinary UK Tesco with no problem, though the viscousity of the solution I bought in Scotland was slightly thicker than what I buy back home.