Travelling with medication

Prescription medications for legitimate health conditions may come under intense scrutiny by foreign officials. In some countries, drugs that are legal and readily available in Canada are considered illegal, require a prescription, or may arouse suspicions among local officials and customs and immigration authorities. It is always best to contact the foreign government offices accredited to Canada of the country you plan to visit to confirm the status of your medication.

See our page on Cannabis and international travel.

When travelling abroad with prescription or over-the-counter medication:

Canadian visitors to the United States should be aware that their personal medication may be subject to U.S. drug importation laws and regulations. In general, personal importation of a 90-day supply of medication is allowed, but only if the drug is not available in the United States. U.S. customs officials have relaxed their policy on the importation of prescription drugs through the mail from Canada. However, all packages are still carefully scrutinized. For further information, visit the website of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Bringing prescription medication back to Canada

To avoid interrupting a course of treatment, Health Canada may permit you to return from abroad with a single course of treatment or a 90-day supply, whichever is less based on the directions for use, of a prescription drug. The drug must be for your use or for the use of a person who is travelling with you and for whom you are responsible. The drug must be in hospital or pharmacy-dispensed packaging, the original retail packaging, or have the original label attached to it clearly indicating what the health product is and what it contains.

Bringing over-the-counter medication back to Canada

You are permitted to import a single course of treatment or a 90-day supply, whichever is less based on the directions for use, of an over-the-counter drug. The drug must be for your use or for the use of a person who is travelling with you and for whom you are responsible. The drug must be shipped or carried in hospital or pharmacy-dispensed packaging, the original retail packaging, or have the original label attached to it clearly indicating what the health product is and what it contains

Related links
Other resources
Report a problem on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, please contact us.

Date modified: