Can I travel by plane with a broken limb in a cast?

What if you are traveling from or to Barcelona and you have a plaster? Discover with us how to get a medical certificate to travel!

Travelling with a cast is never fun. Doctors Barcelona gives you some tips on what to know when you travel with a plaster cast and how to obtain a medical certificate to travel  with our english speaking doctors in Barcelona. 

Check your airline

traveling with a broken limb in a castIn order to be able to fly you should check your airline company. Some airlines allow you to travel 24 hours after your plaster cast has been fitted. This applies for flights with a duration less than 2 hours. Longer flights might require a 48 hours waiting period.

This requirement exists because your plaster cast can swell if you would fly immediately after its fitted and this can affect your blood circulation.

If both your legs are in plaster, it’s unlikely that you will be allowed to fly. We advise you to contact your airline for advice and for more information.

If you are wearing a cast and you would need a medical certificate to travel, Doctors Barcelona can help you. You can book your appointment here with one of our doctors.

About your flying seat

If you have a plaster cast in your upper body or below your knee and you can bend it, you will be able to sit in a normal seat. 

If instead your plaster cast covers your knee and you are not able to bend it, you will need to tell it to the airline. In this way, they can all the special arrangements you need to travel.

In some cases, many airlines may ask you to purchase additional seats.

For security reasons, you won’t be able to sit by one of the emergency exits, unless that in an emergency case you would be able to move fast and easily.

Wheelchair help

You should communicate to your airline If you have a cast on your leg and need a wheelchair to move into the airport. In this way, they can organize all the help you need to catch your flight.

Using crutches

In case you would travel with crutches, you will need to communicate it to your airline.

Most of them will allow you to take your crutches on the plane, but they will put them aside for you during the flight.

Make sure to check with your airline if you need some medical certificate to fly. Doctors Barcelona can give you a medical certificate to travel back home.

Here you can find some airline’s policies about traveling with plaster casts:


You should inform as soon as you can the airline of both your condition and assistance requirements. If you have a plaster cast in your upper body or below your knee, you will only require one seat.

If instead, you are traveling with a full leg in a cast, you must purchase 3 seats in total, each travel you make.

You can travel with your cast if it has been fitted for more than 48 hours, otherwise, the cast needs to be split.


Passengers traveling with wheelchair or plaster casts need to inform the airline as soon as possible. Two days before your departure you need to indicate your special needs while booking your flight. Then you should call the Customer Service Center that will send you a confirmation of the assistance you need. One day before your flight, you should contact the airline if you would need extra help to move to the airport.

The day of your flight you should present yourself at the meeting point of the airport two hours ahead of your flight. The company will assist you before, during and after your flight.


If you need to keep your leg outstretched during the journey, this airline has two options. If you would be on a domestic or an international flight, you can travel in the economy class by reserving a seat and an additional one to have some space for your leg. If instead, you are on an intercontinental flight, you can travel in the business class and AirFrance will provide you the space necessary to rest and stretch your leg. Important to know, on intercontinental flights, that airline requires a medical certificate to travel, otherwise it would not be possible to travel in the economy class. If you would need a medical certificate to travel, Doctors Barcelona can give you the help you need in order to fly abroad.

British Airways

British Airways allows you to travel 24 hours after your plaster cast has been fitted for flights that are less than 2 hours. If your flight is longer, they require 48 hours.


If you are traveling with a plaster cast in the upper part of your body, you can book only one seat in order to fly. If your plaster cast is in the lower part, you should purchase an extra seat, for each flight. If you have a plaster cast in your leg but you can bend your knee, you may require just one seat.


Your plaster cast needs to be 48 hours old. You must send and present a document to prove that you have been fitted with a plaster cast (medical certificate, accident and emergency report, etc.)


You need to inform the airline of your situation at least 48 hours before your flight. You should inform KLM about your plaster cast and in the case, you would need a wheelchair.


If you have a leg cast you will need a medical certificate. This airline allows you to travel 48 hours after your plaster cast has been fitted. Plasters should be split for fresh injuries (48 hours or less). With Emirates is not possible to have extra space for your leg in the economy class. However, you can book an aisle seat.

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