Travel

Travel

It is important that you test your blood glucose (BG) more frequently while you are traveling. The routine hassle of travel, including stress, changes in time zones, schedules and activity levels, meal times and types of food, can all affect your diabetes control. Be extra attentive to monitoring your BG frequently, and be prepared to respond if needed.

Preparing to Travel

Before you travel, review our general travel tips, see how to update the time on your device, and read through our travel checklist just to make sure you have everything.

  1. Travel Loaner Program
    The Travel Loaner Program allows you to take a "back-up" insulin pump for US-based customers for a US $50 fee every 90 days. Take a "back-up" pump when you:
    • Go on a cruise
    • Travel to Hawaii or Alaska
    • Travel internationally

    Complete the Travel Loaner form and submit it at least 2 weeks prior to your trip to ensure on-time delivery. A signature is required upon delivery and you will need to return the travel loaner when you arrive back home.

Note: The program only includes insulin pumps and does not include blood glucose meters or CGM devices.

  1. Medtronic Support within the United States
    Medtronic Diabetes provides a 24-Hour HelpLine for technical assistance. When calling the 24-Hour HelpLine or your local Medtronic Diabetes office, please have your insulin pump and serial number available. The phone number is also on the back of your insulin pump.
    • For calls within the United States: 1.800.646.4633
  2. Medtronic Support Outside the United States
    Be prepared when you travel internationally with the following information:
    • For calls from outside the United States: +1.818.576.5555 (also on the back of your pump)
    • A list of Medtronic Worldwide Sales Offices may be able to help you source extra insulin pump supplies or CGM supplies should something unexpected happen.
Preparing for Flying

It is important that you test your blood glucose (BG) more frequently while you are traveling. The routine hassle of travel, including stress, changes in time zones, schedules and activity levels, meal times and types of food, can all affect your diabetes control. Be extra attentive to monitoring your BG frequently, and be prepared to respond if needed.

Our tips on flying and airport security guidelines apply to travel within the United States. These tips are subject to change, so please also check with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). International passengers should consult their individual air carriers for international regulations.

  1. Insulin Pumps and Blood Glucose Meters
    When on an airplane, you should go to Utilities > Connect Devices > Meters pump screen, select OFF, and press ACT to unlink your meter from your insulin pump. Manually test your glucose levels using a blood glucose meter.
  2. Personal CGM
    If you wear a CGM device, it is safe for use on US commercial airlines. If questioned by airline personnel about the use of your device, please show them your Airport Information Card. If they still request that you turn off your CGM device, you must comply.
    If you are asked to turn off your CGM device, you will have a "data gap" when uploading data into CareLink® Personal Software, where information is missing from the period of time when your CGM system was turned off.
  3. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requirements
    The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires that devices with radio frequency capabilities should not be used on an aircraft.
Updating the Time on Your Insulin Pump

As you travel through different time zones, you should remember to update the time on your insulin pump and blood glucose (BG) meter.

Note: Speak with your healthcare provider before you travel to get their advice on which settings and time adjustments will be best for you.

You will want to pay extra attention to updating the time on your insulin pump:

  • If you have multiple basal rates that vary significantly throughout the day
  • If you experience dawn phenomenon
  • If you experience low BG in the middle of the night
  • If you are traveling far distances (with a time zone change of more than three hours)

Make sure to check your BG more frequently while traveling, especially when a time change is involved.

Travel Checklist

Note: Note: Make sure you have more than enough insulin pump supplies for your trip. Keep in mind that depending on your insurance and quantity of supplies, it may take up to 14 days to get your supplies refilled. Place an order when you have your trip planned to make sure you get your supplies in time to pack.

Use the following checklist as a guideline to remind you of important items to take on your trip. All of these items may not apply.

  • Extra insulin with a current prescription
  • Insulin pump reservoirs
  • Insulin pump infusion sets
  • Insertion device for infusion sets
  • CGM transmitter
  • CGM charger
  • Glucose sensors
  • Insertion device for sensors
  • Tapes and adhesives
  • AAA batteries (Energizer® for optimal performance)
  • Blood glucose meter
  • Test strips and lancets
  • Glucose tablets or fast-acting sugar
  • Snacks
  • Ketone strips
  • Medical ID
  • Airport Information Card
  • Document with current pump settings
  • Insulin syringes for emergency injections and dosing instructions from your doctor

We recommend that you print out the travel checklist to keep handy.

It is important that you test your blood glucose (BG) more frequently while you are traveling. The routine hassle of travel, including stress, changes in time zones, schedules and activity levels, meal times and types of food, can all affect your diabetes control. Be extra attentive to monitoring your BG frequently, and be prepared to respond if needed.

Energizer® is a registered trademark of Eveready Battery Company.

Airport Security Guidelines

Insulin pumps are designed to withstand common electromagnetic interference, including airport security systems. Taking an insulin pump through airport security is quite common. It is always a good idea to carry the Airport Information Card (located in the front pocket of your user guide) when you are traveling.

Because travel rules are subject to change, it is advisable to check with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) before traveling. International passengers should consult their individual air carriers for international regulations.

Insulin Pumps, Personal CGM and Security
  • You can continue to wear your insulin pump or continuous glucose monitor (CGM) while going through common security systems such as an airport metal detector as it will not harm the device or trigger an alarm. Do not send the devices through the x-ray machine as an alternative
  • You need to remove your insulin pump and CGM (sensor and transmitter) while going through an airport body scanner. If you do not wish to remove your devices, you may request an alternative pat-down screening process
  • Notify security screeners that you have diabetes, that you are wearing an insulin pump and are carrying supplies with you
Syringes, Supplies and Security
  • In order to board with syringes and other insulin delivery devices, you must carry an insulin vial with a pharmaceutical label that clearly identifies the medication. Never store insulin in checked luggage, because it may be exposed to extreme (often freezing) temperatures, which can change its effectiveness
  • Carry your glucagon in its original, pharmaceutically labeled container
  • Boarding with lancets will be allowed as long as the lancets are capped and they are carried along with a glucose meter with the manufacturer's name embossed on the meter
  • Should you encounter difficulty when trying to pass through airport security, ask to speak with the TSA ground security commissioner or the international equivalent

Equipment Interference
Read about guidelines for equipment interference, including the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requirements that devices with radio frequency capabilities should not be used on an aircraft.