Tips for Traveling with Osteoarthritis

Preparing for a trip can be a stressful task in itself. When you add a condition like osteoarthritis(OA) to the mix, you may start to feel a little overwhelmed. By practicing some careful planning and preparation, your worries about traveling with OA can be alleviated, allowing you to enjoy your time away.

Be Realistic

Plan your trip according to your abilities. Don’t plan to visit a destination that requires walking for hours on difficult terrain. If you feel that certain weather conditions make your OA symptoms worse, don’t visit a destination that may trigger pain for you.

Make a Plan

Plan your activities ahead of time and balance them out. If you plan to be more active one day, plan to relax more the next. It is key to give your body time to recover before jumping right back into the next activity. Also, it may be wise to request a first-floor room if you plan to stay in a hotel. Make sure you have a plan for getting around your destination whether it be a shuttle, taxi service, or something of that likeness.


If you are flying to your destination, be sure to request a seat with extra leg room. Aisle seats are a great option. You may also want to bring a travel pillow and blanket to help make the trip more comfortable.

Make a Packing List

While packing can be tedious, a list can help ensure that you have everything that you need. It is important to make sure that you pack any prescription medications, braces, etc. that you may require. Having extra items ‘just in case’ will also be helpful in the instance of unexpected circumstances.

Choose Anti-inflammatory Foods

Make the best of your time away by choosing foods that are less likely to trigger inflammation. Avoid highly-processed foods and foods high in fat and calories. Choose foods like dried fruits, whole-grain crackers, yogurt, peanut butter, and drink plenty of water.

While osteoarthritis can be restrictive, it doesn’t have to dictate your travel plans. With some simple modifications and extra planning, you can be well on your way to a carefree vacation.

If you or someone you love is suffering from OA pain and looking for new treatment options to help manage symptoms, studies are enrolling now in your local area that may help.  Research doctors are evaluating new treatment options and qualified participants may have access to potential new OA treatments.  Participants often receive care from board-certified physicians and other medical staff, and may receive compensation for time and travel expenses. To learn more about these studies and to see if you qualify CLICK HERE.