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💊Medications (non narcotic) travel restrictions?

Before anyone says to search previous topics…I did. Some were old, so I need fresh comments. And some didn’t apply. 😬

My main question is can meds be stored in tiny ziplock bags or pill containers unlabeled? I have a co-traveler who has meds and the bottles are to large to pack. Also some are over the counter meds.

Please let me know if anyone has come back recently & packed meds.


Posted by
120 posts

😳😫Wow…this is why I tell everyone RS forum is better than Google. I spend quite sometime on Google before breaking down to post my question. And your link was far more informative than the other links I read. Hmm…My co-traveler has hypertension. I don’t think it should be left behind. I guess it will have to come in the the original bottle. 😂


Posted by
15449 posts

I haven't been IN Turkey for several years, but I flew through Istanbul last summer and plan to do so again in a couple weeks. I pack my meds (2 prescription, several OTC, all unlabeled) in my hand luggage, usually in small containers all together in a 1 gallon ziplock bag because it's easier to organize. No one's ever paid any attention . . . anywhere I've flown. None, however are liquids.

Posted by
10323 posts

Perhaps the contact info below may be of some help:

The travellers under medical treatment carrying medical
preparations containing controlled substances for personal
use are expected to carry with them only the amount of
medicine necessary to cover the duration of stay in Turkey.
Days / Quantities/Doses
Turkish Medicines and Medical
Devices Agency
Department of Pharmacovigilance
and Controlled Substances
Sögütözü Mahallesi, 2176. Sokak
No: 5 06520 Cankaya Ankara
Tel.: +90 312 218 3316
Fax: +90 312 218 3290

Posted by
352 posts

Sorry, just realized you're traveling to Turkey. GREAT info about Turkey, good to know! I pack my meds (in carryon in case checked bag is lost, as I've zero interest in needing to see a doctor while away), in original containers because I'm away for a few months at a time.

Posted by
6810 posts

Since your friend likely has bottles for a 90 day supply, have them speak with their pharmacy and have them make up bottles small enough to hold only what is needed for the trip. Even if the Pharmacy only provides labels, you then can put them on bottles or containers you find.

The term "Original Container" is for convenience, no one knows what the original container is, probably more accurate to say a container with the pharmacy label.

And yes, I would take more care with Turkey than with some of the EU nations.

Posted by
1259 posts

Are the OP and friend going to Turkey? I didn't see that bit. Past advice given here on the forum is to use tiny ziplocks but to carry the RX labels and to photograph the labels and have them on the phone. Many folks use those hard plastic daily med containers. Talking to your docs is always a good idea to see what scrips might be safely deferred for a few weeks. Most supplements are rarely necessary to maintain good health and can be left behind. Others might be comforting but one can wean oneself off of them before traveling to countries where they might raise an eyebrow. Some OTC meds are not easily obtained in some countries when the need is pressing and folks like to carry them just in case; stuff like Pepto, Aleve, activated charcoal, melatonin.

Posted by
8079 posts

Maybe its a holdover from growing up in the '60s & '70s, but going anywhere with a plastic baggie of unidentifiable pills never sounds like a good idea.

Posted by
120 posts

Thanks to all the replies. 😂

Chani: a little too risky choice 😬

Joe: 👏wow great info for the person who has control meds. Luckily not applicable on this trip. So advice to future travelers….prepare well in advance.

Paul: my co-traveler has too many bottles to use original bottles & most are mail order so it’s not like you can go to the local pharmacy & ask for a vac bottle. 😢. Note for next trip: should contact mail order well in advance & get extra labels to attach to zip lock bags.

Bogiesan: my co traveler is a mature adult so skipping is not an option. But I also agree that you can usually find otc meds & some rx meds quite easily in Europe without a prescription. (Greece & Turkey should hopefully have some places that operate without prescriptions for lots of meds)

Stan: 😂

Well is worse comes to worse at the airport…I’ll find myself traveling solo 😂

Posted by
15 posts

Pharmacist here( retired)
leave meds in original labelled containers. Take 50% more than you think you’ll need. Bring a current med profile from your pharmacy. Add desiccants to vial if room permits. Forget the ziplocks unless all your vials fit into one. Carry them with you in a day pack. Never leave them in checked luggage. Note- your country’s definition of narcotic and non narcotic may not apply in other countries

Posted by
1951 posts

Hey @ Nova - your travel dates were from 09-18-22 to 10-12-22

How was the trip - everything workout as planned !