Know your pollen. An allergist can give you a skin test to determine to which specific pollens you are allergic, Bassett said. If you are visiting a city that displays its pollen counts for different trees or grasses online, you can prepare yourself for what may come.
Get rid of the pollen. If you are in a particularly pollen-heavy place, wear a wide-brimmed hat so that pollen doesn't get into your eyes and hair, Bassett said. Wash your hair before you go to bed and clean off your glasses and change clothes so that you don't allow pollen to linger on your body.
A nasal saline bottle can help remove pollen from your nose and is a handy item for a bag that you carry, Bassett said.
Bring extra defense. No matter what kind of environment you think you're traveling to, Calhoun recommends bringing along extra defenses. Any decongestants and antihistamine medications you would use in an allergic situation should come along for the ride -- the nose sprays, pills, eye drops, and whatever else you would use when the environment is making you sneeze.
"My patients travel from one place to another, and it's not clear what the aeroallergens might be," he said. "If symptoms begin to worsen, they'll have those backstops."
He also recommends keeping all medicines in their original packaging in case security officers question what they are.
When it makes sense, premedicate. There are situations where it may make sense to take allergy medicine ahead of time. For instance, if you are allergic to certain animals, you might find yourself on an airplane with one. People with disabilities, including mental health problems, can bring animals on board for support, and some carriers generally allow small pets.
Calhoun recommends taking a pseudoephedrine decongestant before getting on a plane if there's a chance an animal on board could trigger your allergies or asthma. You might also consider wearing an M95 filter mask, available in drug stores, although there's no hard evidence this will help.
The bottom line
If you have serious allergies, talk to your doctor about what is the best strategy for you when you're away from home. Bon voyage.