A Pharmacist's Recommendation: What Medicines to Pack for Travel?

Updated: Mar 31, 2018

Does it ever cross your mind to pack the right medications during your vacations? Do you actually do it? What should you pack? Here's what a pharmacist recommends for your next trip.

Travel sickness pills in a Parata medication dispensing machine. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

How many of you pack medicine for travel?

Okay on the count of three, 1...2...3 please raise your hand if you actually pack medications, whether it be over-the-counter (OTC) or prescriptions for your trips.

Okay now for those of you with your hands still up, how many of you pack the right medications?

If you don't have a travel medical bag or maybe pack the wrong medicines in it, no worries because I was able to speak with a good friend, who happens to be a local pharmacist willing to offer her advice on what to pack.

Get immunizations

My friend, Phuong who owns Sun Pharmacy in San Jose explained to me why being prepared by packing the right medications is always a good idea, especially when you travel outside the United States.

One of the first things she recommends is to get the proper immunizations. I like to check the U.S. State Department website, which I mention here for the country or countries I am going to travel to. You'll learn what immunizations, if needed are recommended prior to travel on their website.

Speaking of immunizations, it's also recommended, but not required to get a influenza or flu shot.

If you've been paying any attention to what happened in Australia and the United States during their respective flu seasons, you'll learn that both countries got hit hard with the flu.

So get that shot to help protect you.

Also, to help boost your immune system, I like to maintain good health by working out at least 3 times per week, eating a balanced diet and sleeping for at least 6 to 8 hours.

Inside Sun Pharmacy. (Photo by Digital Nomad Foodie)

Some good OTC medicines to take are


  • Bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto Bismol)

  • Loperamide (Immodium)

Antihistamine (allergy reaction):

  • Diphenhydramine (Benadryl)

  • Hydrocortisone Cream 1%


  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol)

  • Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin)

Antimotion Sickness:

  • Meclinzine

Antibacterial Cream/Ointment:

  • Triple Therapy (Neosporin)


  • Pepcid

  • Alka-Seltzer

  • Tums

Presciption medications

You should also always check with your own medical provider to see which prescription medications you are currently taking and which ones you might be low on and will need a refill prior to going on your vacation.

One of the last things you want to ruin your vacation is to worry about not bringing your prescription medication or coming up short during your trip.

If you reside in the South Bay and need a good pharmacist to dispense medications for you I highly recommend Sun Pharmacy in San Jose! Below is the address and phone number.

Sun Pharmacy

2559 South King Road

San Jose, CA 95122

(408) 440-2077

You Might Be Interested:

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How to Reduce Travel Stress Using These 4 Tips

#sunpharmacy #sanjose

About Digital Nomad Foodie

Digital Nomad Foodie is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area.  He was a paratrooper in the U.S. Army and has lived all over the world.  In addition to blogging, he is also a digital nomad working in healthcare.  He writes about his experiences and recommendations in various locations around the world.  His photos and reviews have helped over 79 million people learn about local & exotic destinations plus delicious food and can be seen on InstagramGoogle Maps and Yelp.


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