Traveling with Ozempic: How to stay on track The image shows 3 Ozempic pens, a map, a passport, and plane tickets.

Traveling with Ozempic: How to stay on track

May 9. 2023

Whether it is for pleasure or work, travel is a fun experience. Being on a medical weight loss program, such as Ozempic weight loss, shouldn’t prevent you from making a trip and having a great time. However, traveling with Ozempic can be daunting if you are not sure how to use and store the medication properly.

Ozempic is a type 2 diabetes blood sugar medication that is also used for weight loss management. Like most diabetes medications, Ozempic comes in injectable pens. Ozempic pens must be stored at a fridge or room temperature, depending if we are talking about a new or used pen. You must also follow certain safety guidelines to preserve the medicine’s efficacy and avoid any issue – such as a broken pen. Overall, keeping Ozempic at home means no trouble; the drug is easy to store. But what happens when your dream vacation is scheduled during your Ozempic treatment? That should not be a problem either!

In this article, our weight loss clinic in Chicago will give you all the guidelines you will require when traveling with Ozempic. From how to store your injectable pens when taking a plane to some extra tips so you do not miss one day of your weight loss program. Are you planning an upcoming trip? Continue reading to find out how to travel safely while carrying Ozempic with you.

How does Ozempic work?

Ozempic is a blood glucose levels management medication that’s used to treat type 2 diabetes in adults. In 2017, Ozempic got the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) approval to treat high blood sugar levels. And while this drug has still not gotten its approval for weight loss management, in 2021, Novo Nordisk – the pharmaceutical company that produced Ozempic – developed Wegovy. Ozempic and Wegovy are two brands of the same active compound (Semaglutide), but the second one is an approved weight loss medication.

Ozempic, or Semaglutide, works by mimicking a receptor agonist called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1). GLP-1 indicates our pancreas increases insulin secretion and stops the liver from producing too much glucose. In patients with diabetes, that helps them to control blood sugar levels. But if you use it for weight loss purposes, that effect slows down your gastric emptying. That means that food will remain longer in your stomach, making you feel satisfied for longer after eating. That creates an appetite-suppressing effect, such as when taking Phentermine for weight loss. GLP-1 receptor agonist also works in your brain by targeting the hunger areas and controlling your appetite. Once you start taking Ozempic, committing to a diet will be much easier. And so it will be achieving your goal weight.

Ozempic comes in injectable pens that must be administered once a week. It is vital you always take the medication on the same day of the week and stay consistent with the treatment to see effective results. How long does Ozempic take to work? Some patients start seeing results after a couple of weeks; others need more time for their bodies to adapt to the medication. The treatment can last for several months until you reach your desired weight.

How to store Ozempic the right way

In case you have used insulin devices before or have been on Ozempic for a while, you know that Ozempic subcutaneous injectable pens must be stored carefully. And there are different storage guidelines for a new pen and one that has already been used at least once. That is because Novo Nordisk Ozempic injectable pens are available in three options. One option is a carton that contains one device with 2mg of Ozempic, another one that holds 4mg per pen, and a third one that contains 8mg in each device. In each pen, you can adjust the dosage your health care provider prescribed you. Your doctor will also advise you on using the pen and the best place to inject Mounjaro for weight loss. On that note, you can use a single device several times until it runs out of medication.

Before the first use, the injectable pens should stay on the refrigerator at between 36°F to 46°F (or 2°C to 8°C). After the first use, you can store the device for 56 days at room temperature, between 59ºF to 86ºF (or 15ºC to 30ºC). You can also put them back in the refrigerator after the first use.

You must make sure never to freeze the pens. If the medication got frozen, toss the pen and use a new one. Semaglutide – Ozempic’s active ingredient – is highly sensitive to light and temperature. Keep the devices on the fridge or at room temperature in the carton it come in when you bought it.

Can I travel with Ozempic?

We get many patients asking us if they can travel carrying Ozempic. That question has a simple answer – yes, you can travel with your medication. But traveling with Ozempic is not that simple. Before booking your trip, you must consider many factors, such as how to pack the injectable pens so they do not go bad. As you may know, Ozempic can lose effectiveness if exposed to extremely high or low temperatures. If you do not store the medication correctly, you could end up wondering: why am I not losing weight on Ozempic?

Thankfully, all those matters have easy solutions. There are some precautions you must take when taking Ozempic with you on a trip. But having a fun and relaxed vacation or business journey while continuing your Ozempic treatment is possible.

Packing Ozempic for traveling: all you need to know

Since Semaglutide is highly sensitive to temperature and light, Ozempic storage instructions are pretty strict. Those instructions are easy to follow, but things can get challenging when making a trip. So what if your next injection occurs while you are away from home on a business trip or a holiday? How can you travel with Ozempic and make sure they remain at the correct temperature?

According to Novo Nordisk, you must avoid exposing Ozempic at temperatures above 86F° (30C°). If you are traveling to a place with warm weather, you must protect the medication and keep it cool. You can do that by storing the pens in the refrigerator even after the first use. Always keep the injectable devices in the shade and away from direct sunlight. You can purchase a portable medical cooling device if you think that could be challenging. There are some great tools to keep insulin cool while traveling; you can choose the one that better suits your needs.

Keeping Ozempic cool on a plane: dos and don’ts

Can you take Ozempic or Wegovy with you on a plane flight? Yes, you can. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) states that diabetes-related supplies, equipment, and medications – including injectable pens – are allowed through the checkpoint. But first, they must be properly scanned by an X-ray machine or a hand inspection. Before the screening begins, you must separate all your Ozempic pens from the rest of your belongings. It is a good idea to arrive at the airport earlier than usual when carrying Ozempic.

What if you are traveling abroad? You may want to consult with the local authorities about their airport permissions. Check if you are allowed to take Ozempic with you on the plane. Some airport security may request a letter from your healthcare provider to prove you need the medication. You can call the airport and ask for information about this matter in advance.

The best is to carry the injectable pens in a carry-on bag. Never leave them in the checked luggage where temperatures get too cold; the medicine can get spoiled. It is recommended to bring Ozempic pens in their original cartons with readable labels so airport security can quickly identify the medication.

Another suggestion is to take at least twice much medicine as you will need during the trip. That way, if something happens, like your flight getting canceled, you will have enough medication for the extra days.

The most frequently asked question when traveling with Ozempic

Can I take Ozempic abroad?

Semaglutide (Ozempic and Wegovy) is a widely used medicine available around the globe. You shouldn’t face any particular hazards when traveling internationally with Ozempic. However, we recommend you contact the local airport and inform yourself about your destination’s laws.

What should I do with the pens once I arrive?

Always try to avoid carrying your Ozempic pens around. Once you arrive at your destination, leave them at the hotel or house. Keep them at room or fridge temperature, depending on if it is a new or used pen. In case you travel to a hot weather destination, you can store the devices in the fridge even after the first use.

What should I do if the pens get exposed to sunlight?

Direct exposure to bright lights or sunlight can spoil the medication. If that happens, you must throw away the exposed pens – new or used – and use a new one for your next dosage. Remember to always discard your Ozempic pens in FDA-approved disposal containers. That way, you avoid anyone from getting injured with the needles.

How to know if Ozempic has gone bad?

You can check the liquid content of the pen if you have doubts about Ozempic going bad. Semaglutide must be clear and colorless. You should discard that pen and use a new one if the medicine for the injectable pen looks cloudy, colored, or has any particles.

Extra tips for when traveling while taking Ozempic

Besides how to properly carry and store the Ozempic pens, we wanted to give you a few more tips related to your weight loss journey. As you can see, Ozempic works by suppressing appetite and cravings. And it is on your end to follow a proper diet plan and healthy habits to boost weight loss. When traveling, we tend to relax and turn a blind eye to our diet – it happens to all of us. Remember that Ozempic and fatty foods can sabotage your journey. It can also enhance the medication side effects – something you will want to avoid while on a trip. Try sticking to your healthy diet as much as you can to prevent weight gain.

When taking Ozempic for weight loss, it is recommended to limit your alcohol intake to help maximize the treatment’s effectiveness. Ozempic or Mounjaro and alcohol are not good combinations. Alcohol is linked to overeating; alcoholic drinks have empty calories that can undo all your hard work.

Final thoughts

Are you planning a family vacation? Or do you need to go away for a few days on a business trip? Traveling with Ozempic can be challenging, but it can be done. Being on this weight loss program does not have to stop you from traveling and having fun on your trip. As long as you follow the safety guidance on storing and carrying the medication, you will face no problems. Ozempic pens are easy to transport; just remember that they must be at the right temperature at all times and away from direct light. Do you have more questions about an upcoming trip while taking Ozempic? Schedule a call with us. Our healthcare providers will let you in on all you need to know to have a safe trip.

Nurse Walton


Nurse Walton

Born and raised in Chicago, IL, Chanay received her Practical Nurse licensure and went to work in clinical specialties such as Home Health, Assisted Living, Long-Term Care and Dialysis Centers. Through this work, she realized the importance of diet, nutrition and weight loss among her patients. This led her to open A Better Weigh, Inc. Medical Weight Loss Center in 2009.

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