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Prescription drugs in Liberia?

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Cary, North Carolina
posts: 6
reviews: 7
Prescription drugs in Liberia?

Hi - I will be in Costa Rica in early May. I get really bad migraines and expect the travel, heat and humidity will probably trigger some. I've read on some websites that you can get prescription drugs over the counter in Costa Rica. Would I be able to get something with codeine in it OTC or would I need to see a doctor for that?

Also - The day I leave, my plane leaves very early in the morning (~ 6:30 a.m.). I've read several places that I should be at the airport 3 hours early ... that's 3:30 a.m.! Is this really necessary for what's probably the first flight out of the day? Does anyone know if the Hilton near the Liberia airport even has a shuttle running that early?

Thanks for all the great advice (I've been reading a lot of the other posts on here!)

Costa Rica
posts: 20,084
reviews: 23
1. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

1. Anything with codeine or other controlled substances will need a doctor's prescription. You can go to one of the pharmacies in Liberia and ask them to recommend a doctor for you.

Considering what happens when you get a migraine, and the difficulty of going to a pharmacy or doctor, why not just bring enough with you to take care of your migraines?

2. If the Hilton Garden Inn doesn't have a shuttle running that early, then just ask them to call a taxi for you. It's about 5 minutes to the airport.

You should definitely be at the airport no later than 4 am. Keep in mind that you will need to stand in line with the other 250 or so passengers on your flight to check in and some airlines will not let you board if you have not checked in at least one hour before the flight. You will also have to pay departure tax and fill out a form. You can pay your departure tax and get the form at one of the offices of the Banco de Costa Rica -- and possibly at the Hilton. You can also pay your departure tax upon arrival.

Cary, North Carolina
posts: 6
reviews: 7
2. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

Thanks Hattie - since I spend so much money on my prescriptions, I was hoping not to expose them to the heat and humidity of my travel (for most of my trip I will not be staying in air conditioned hotels). If the ability to easily pick up something with codeine in it was available and inexpensive, I figured that would be the easiest thing to do. Clearly that's not the best answer in this case, so I will be bring my scripts with me.

Thanks for the advice on departure and the process!

San Jose, Costa Rica
Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
posts: 39,770
3. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

Agree with Hattie advice...if you can bring your medicines even better just pack them in a well dry container.

roadadvisor

Costa Rica
posts: 20,084
reviews: 23
4. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

I have prescription medicines ( as do a lot of people who live in Costa Rica) and I don't have a problem with them going bad because of the heat and humidity. I just take care of them. If you need to, keep a few with you when you are out and about - but otherwise, just leave them in a cool spot in your hotel.

You could bring them in something like a small insulated lunch bag if you are concerned.

Dallas, Texas
posts: 290
reviews: 7
5. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

I've purchased Tylenol 3 OTC before in Liberia. It has codeine, but probably a smaller amount than you will need.

Cary, North Carolina
posts: 6
reviews: 7
6. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

Thanks for the ideas Hattie - I'm actually going to purchase some dessicant packs to put into the pill bottles. Much of the time I'm there, I won't be staying in an air conditioned hotel room but rather a rustic, open air bunk house, so that was my concern ... particularly with the humidity.

Cary, North Carolina
posts: 6
reviews: 7
7. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

Thanks Jetskier - Tylenol 3 would allow me to function with the pain without knocking me out if it weren't a major full-blown migraine, so I might try to get some.

Costa Rica
posts: 20,084
reviews: 23
8. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

Not to worry, Naganalf1. I live in a very humid area and I don't have a problem with the humidity and my medications (and supplements) - unless I am stupid about it and don't close them tightly. A dessicant pack is a good idea. With mine, I use cotton.

You can try getting the Tylenol 3 in small quantity just as a "hedge." But they are really not supposed to sell you that without a prescription so it may vary from pharmacy to pharmacy and from clerk to clerk. Just so you know....

Anyway - let's hope you have a great visit with no migraine problems.

Cary, North Carolina
posts: 6
reviews: 7
9. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

Your answers have been reassuring Hattie! I'm looking forward to my trip and hoping despite any thoughts and precautions that I take with my meds, that I won't have to use them! Thanks!

Costa Rica
posts: 20,084
reviews: 23
10. Re: Prescription drugs in Liberia?

I know what you mean! I always take my meds when traveling - with fingers crossed that I don't have to use them.

You will find pharmacists and doctors in Costa Rica very helpful, if you need them. Plus there are public clinics pretty much everywhere and private clinics that won't cost you an arm and a leg -- if you should need them.

Be sure and let us know how everything went once you return home.