Travel Tips with Fibromyalgia
When you're ready to travel despite your fibromyalgia, there are a number of important tips that can help you with your planning. It is very important to consider your physical needs and your emotional well being while you are away. Use these suggestions to plan your trip and to take care of yourself while traveling with fibromyalgia.
Plan The Itinerary
If you're simply planning a trip for pleasure, and do not need it to be to a specific destination, carefully consider your plans. If you are very sensitive to the cold weather, don't take a trip to Colorado in December. If the heat drags you down, stay away from South Carolina in the summer. If you can't walk up a lot of stairs, don't visit the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. Be realistic about the location where you are traveling and take your needs and limitations into careful consideration. Make sure, when you set the itinerary, that you leave room for plenty of rest. Don't schedule anything on the first day that you arrive, as traveling is very tiring and you'll want to rest when you get there. Try to give yourself at least one day of rest when you return home as well, as you'll probably be tired from your travels and may deal with fatigue from your condition.
Call the hotel where you want to stay directly so that you can talk to someone there when you book your reservation. Ask for a room that is either on the main floor, or near to the elevator so that you won't have to walk a long way. Be clear with them about your needs, in case you need wheelchair access, a shower grab bar, a non-smoking room, or something else. If you find that the hotel bed isn't comfortable, bring or buy some extra pillows. You may even want to have others with fibromyalgia recommend the best hotel to you for your needs.
If you plan to fly, let the airline know ahead of time that you are disabled. Try to get the bulkhead aisle seat as it's the easiest one to get into and out of and it has more leg room. Allow yourself a great deal of layover time between planes so that you aren't rushing to get to your next plane. Consider using a wheelchair, or having someone meet you with a go-cart in the airport, even if you don't normally need these extras. These items will help you to preserve your energy for your adventure.
Certainly make sure to use luggage with wheels and not to over pack. Carry on only a very small bag with your necessities. Be sure, however, to keep your fibromyalgia medications and other necessities with you in their original bottles. If your luggage gets lost, you'll be very happy to have your medication with you.
If you're planning to travel by car, make sure to give yourself time to stop every hour or two. Get out of the car, stretch a bit, get a drink and walk around. You can become quite stiff by staying in one position for too long and this can increase your pain. If there is space in the car, give yourself a small bed in the backseat where you can stretch out. Bring along extra pillows to make your driving experience more comfortable.
Planning with Your Companion
Make sure, before you begin your travels, to sit down with your traveling companions to discuss your needs. Your trip can easily be made smoother if everyone understands your expectations and needs and your travel limitations with fibromyalgia. This will eliminate disappointment, frustration and pressure from others and can help everyone to have a more pleasant vacation.