Going On Holiday


If you’re thinking about booking a holiday this summer, there are a few things to think about if you have a lung condition. Leanne is a respiratory nurse specialist for our helpline and has some top tips to help you plan a stress-free holiday in the UK.

Planning a trip with a lung condition means considering what you will need to stay well while you’re away. This summer, with coronavirus restrictions still limiting travel abroad, you might be thinking about booking a holiday in the UK. Here are my top tips and things to think about before you book.

What to think about before booking a holiday in the UK


There are a few important things to check when booking accommodation in the UK. You might want to ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the accommodation accessible? For example, does it have a lift or a ramp to use if you become breathless?

  • Is it easy to get to? Can you get there easily by car or by public transport?

  • If you use oxygen, will the accommodation supplier allow you to use oxygen? It’s important not to assume that all will let you.

Make sure you do your research beforehand and if you’re not sure, call the property.

It’s also useful to think about what triggers you might encounter. This could be dust, log burners, animals, or another trigger that could set off your symptoms. You might want to think about taking your own bedding if you’re sensitive to dust mites.

You can find more advice on choosing holiday accommodation on our information pages.

How I might get there

There are lots of ways to travel round the UK, whether it’s by public transport or by car. If you’re planning on travelling by public transport, make sure to get in touch with the transport provider, to make sure they offer everything you need to make your journey pleasant.

At the moment, it’s also compulsory to wear a face-covering on public transport, unless you’re exempt. You might find it useful to have a read through our advice on face coverings before booking and travelling. We’ve also got advice on getting to your holiday destination, whichever mode of transport you’re using.

Organise oxygen and medication for your trip

Speak to your oxygen provider to arrange oxygen for your trip. They’ll need to know details such as where you’re staying and when, and it’s a good idea to do this as far in advance as you can.

It’s also important to make sure that you have permission from the place you’re staying to store oxygen equipment and cylinders there, and know how to travel safely with your oxygen.

For more advice on this, read our information on using oxygen on holiday in the UK.

Organise any medication you’ll need for your trip well in advance. It’s possible that you’ll need extra medication to cover any emergencies. Take a rescue pack with you if you have one.

Read more about medication and holidays.


We often get calls from people with lung conditions who find their symptoms flare up in hot weather. Another reason your symptoms may become worse in the summer is pollen, with grass, weeds and various types of trees releasing their pollen at this time of year.

Before you travel, keep an eye on the weather forecast, pollen and pollution levels, so you can plan your activities accordingly.

You can find more tips on how to look after your lungs in hot weather on our information pages.

Holiday checklist

There are lots of things to remember when planning a holiday.

Our helpful holiday checklist will make sure you’re fully prepared for an enjoyable trip.

What to think about in the lead up to your holiday

Plan your route

Plan out your route to your destination carefully. Things you might want to think about include:

  • If I need assistance with walking, will there be times I have to walk unaided?

  • Will I have enough crossover time between different modes of transport?

  • How many times might I need to stop off along the way?

Give yourself plenty of time!

Tell the people you’re going with about your lung condition

It’s a good idea to tell the people you’re going on holiday with about your condition, particularly what to do if it gets worse or you have a flare-up.

Know what to do in an emergency

When holidaying in the UK, it’s a good idea to take a copy of your prescription with you. This could be a paper copy, or you could take photos on your phone. You could also download the NHS app, where you can view your medical records.

Keep your medicines, and equipment like your peak flow meter, in their original packaging, with the prescription label attached.

Also make sure you keep your inhaler (if you have one) in a place that’s easy to get to, like a trouser pocket or a front pocket of a bag.

Make sure you have the contact details of your doctor to hand, in case of an emergency. It’s also a good idea to find out how you might be able to get more supplies of your medicines at your holiday destination, in case they get lost or damaged. Look up where your nearest pharmacy will be, so you know where it is if you need it.

And remember, enjoy yourself! If you want more tips and advice about going on holiday, take a look at our information pages.