Can I Fly If I Have Shingles?

It is permissible for a person with shingles to fly as long as he keeps his rash covered to prevent spreading the disease to others, according to Dr. Sarah Kohl writing on HealthTap. Because shingles is painful, Dr. Kohl advises discussing pain medication with a doctor prior to traveling.

While there may not be a medical reason to prevent a person with shingles from flying, airlines may impose restrictions. Virgin Atlantic allows shingles patients to fly five days after the rash appears as long as the rash is scabbed over, according to the company website. Aer Lingus bans patients with shingles from flying for seven days after the rash first appears, per the company website. A person with shingles is advised to contact his airline's special assistance department to discuss his individual situation.