Poland has significant natural and historical attractions, with the former including Białowieża Forest and Łazienki Park, while Wawel Castle and St. Mary's Basilica are beautiful representations of Poland’s culture and heritage.
The climate in Poland is very similar to that of the UK.
Around 400,000 British nationals visited Poland in 2012, which can be accessed from the United Kingdom either by airplane, train or a lengthy journey by car.
Flying to Poland
Flying from Birmingham to the capital of Poland, Warsaw, can take just over four hours, depending on your airline, but this can increase to between seven-eight hours if your stops last longer.
This journey will take around 19 hours by car, while the train from St Pancras International to Warsaw will require a journey time of just over four hours.
Ferry trips can be made, but not directly to Poland and will require at least two days worth of travel.
If you are unsure as to how best manage your diabetes schedule while travelling to Poland then you should discuss a plan with your diabetes specialist.
Poland is one hour ahead of British Summer Time and two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time, which should not require any significant adjustments to the way you manage your diabetes.
The currency in Poland is the Polish Złoty. Some establishments, such as supermarkets, accept Euros, while ATMs are scattered across Poland.
There are no mandatory vaccinations required to enter Poland, however, most travellers are recommended to receive the hepatitis A vaccine which can be caught in Poland through contaminated food or water.
Rabies can be found in bats in Poland, so it is advised for those planning activities in remote areas that put them at risk for bat bites to receive a rabies vaccine.
Have you got a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)?
Poland is amongst the European countries that allow you to receive state healthcare either at a reduced cost or sometimes for free. It will cover you for medical treatment until you return to the UK.
You should note which syringes are available in Poland, with U-100 and U-40 syringes the most commonly used.
The vast majority of insulin in the UK is U-100 insulin. If you need to take a different strength of insulin, say in an emergency, it’s important that you use the correct device and syringes for that insulin.
For example, you would use a U-40 syringe for U-40 insulin. You will need to work with a doctor getting the right dose if you’re using a different form of insulin.
Getting medication in Poland
Diabetic medication is available in Poland, but payment is required from a pharmacy, for which the Polish translation is “Apteka”.
However, possessing an EHIC card allows you to receive treatment at a lesser cost and this money can be recouped when you get back into the UK.
There are two emergency services telephone number to be called in Poland. 112 is an all-service emergency number, with 999 also used for an ambulance.
It is important to note any of the diabetes associations in the country, or countries, that you are travelling to. There are two diabetic associations is Poland, the addresses are:
- Polskie Stowarzyszenie Diabetykow
ul. Gdanska 10,
Tel/Fax: +48 52 346 06 92
- Polskie Towarzystwo Diabetologiczne
Chorób Wewnetrznych-Diabetologii i Nefr,
Ul 3-go Maja 13/15,
Tel: +48-42-6776 672
- How is blood glucose measured in Poland? Blood glucose levels are measured in mmol/l, as they are in the UK.
- What language is spoken in Poland? Polish, although many locals will have a good grasp of English.
- Will I need an international driving license when driving in Poland? No
- If I want to hire a vehicle during my visit, will I face any form of discrimination? No
- What sugar free drinks are available in Poland? Hortex-light drinks, Pepsi Max, Diet Coke and mineral water