Savvy Tips Guru

Your Guide to Flying Comfortably with a Cold: Tips and Precautions

flying with a cold

Flying with a cold can add an extra layer of stress to your travel experience. Boarding an airplane might be nerve-wracking when you’re already sick. This is a problem that many people are facing. Many travelers face the same uncertainty about whether it’s safe or wise to fly with a cold. It’s a common concern that arises when people find themselves feeling unwell right before a scheduled trip.

Can You Fly With a Cold?

Yes, you can fly with a cold. But there are things to think about. Flying when you’re sick can be uncomfortable. Airplane pressure fluctuations can irritate the sinuses and ears. The dry air can also make your nose and throat feel worse.

There’s also a chance you could pass your cold on to other people on the plane. If you’re coughing or sneezing, it’s easy to spread germs. Wearing a mask can help a bit, but it’s not perfect. Be cautious not to infect other people.

Think about how you’re going to feel before deciding to fly with a cold. It could be fine if your symptoms aren’t too bad and you’re in good enough health to travel. However, it may be wise to hold off until you’re feeling better if you’re extremely ill.

Tips for Flying With a Cold

If you decide to fly with a head cold, here are some tips to help make the experience more comfortable:

  • Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water before and during your flight to keep your nasal passages moist and help alleviate congestion. You can also try turmeric to relieve a cold.
  • Use Saline Nasal Spray: You can alleviate dryness and irritation in your nasal passages by using a saline nasal spray.
  • Take Medication: Consider taking over-the-counter cold medication before your flight to help alleviate symptoms such as congestion and coughing. However, be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist first, as some medications may not be suitable for air travel.
  • Use a Decongestant: If your nasal passages are truly congested, a decongestant might help alleviate the puffiness and make it easier to breathe. Once again, before taking any medicine, consult your healthcare professional.
  • Rest: If possible, try to rest before your flight to give your body a chance to recover.
  • Consider Postponing Your Trip: If you’re feeling very unwell, it may be best to postpone your trip until you’re feeling better to avoid discomfort and reduce the risk of spreading your illness to others.

Should You Fly With a Cold?

Missing a trip you’ve been looking forward to is never easy, and deciding whether to postpone or change your plans can be tough. However, it’s important to consider the advice of authoritative bodies like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US and the NHS in the UK when determining if you’re fit to travel. They recommend not flying or seeking medical advice before traveling if you have a fever of 100°F (37.7°C) or higher, along with any of the following symptoms:

  • Chest pain
  • Severe ear, sinus, or nose infection
  • Easily transmissible infectious disease
  • Noticeable signs of sickness, like weakness
  • Skin rash or lesions
  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Persistent, severe cough
  • Persistent diarrhea
  • Persistent vomiting related to illness
  • Yellowing of the skin and eyes or other noticeable discoloration

Traveling With a Cold: It’s Your Choice

Flying with a cold can be challenging, but with the right precautions and care, you can make the experience more comfortable for yourself and others. Be sure to stay hydrated, take medication if necessary, and consider postponing your trip if you’re feeling very unwell. A more pleasant and trouble-free trip is possible if you follow these instructions.


  • Diane Silva

    Diane is a travel enthusiast, content creator, and master storyteller, capturing her adventures through captivating blogs and engaging vlogs. With a passion for the great outdoors and a love for literature, she brings a unique perspective to the travel world. Whether she's exploring hidden gems or discussing the latest trends, Diane is your go-to source for all things travel and beyond.