General Travel Tips

Systane and Zaditor: How to Beat Dry, itchy Eyes When You Travel

Zaditor and Systane

Zaditor & Systane

My eyes can be a nightmare when I travel.  Dry, stinging orbs exacerbated by hot, windy, dry or dusty locations—Africa being a particularly difficult nemesis. It’s frustrating.

Add in long plane rides, time spent in front of my computer, and lack of sleep and I want to claw my eyes out of my head. At my wit’s end, I asked my ophthalmologist for help.  He suggested what turned out to be a miracle combo: Zaditor and Systane (They both come in .5ml bottles, perfect for a TSA-friendly carry-on bag).

(Before I continue, I am not a nurse or in the medical field so I recommend you speak with your ophthalmologist as I did before trying these drops yourself.)

Both solutions are over-the-counter and provide huge relief for dry eyes like mine and perhaps yours. Zaditor is a topical antihistamine that reduces itching and burning and the resulting inflammation.

Systane is a lubricant that helps with dry eye. There is an everyday drop that I use (see the link above) and the gel formula I break out when my eyes are truly on fire. (The gel is super goopy, so don’t try to read or do anything after. Put a drop in each eye when you go to bed and nod off. In the morning you’ll feel better.)

When I apply a combination of these two wonderful drops the results are incredible.

How I Use Them 

On nights when my eyes hurt, I take out my contact lenses and I put a drop of Zaditor in my eyes, wait a few minutes then follow it with a drop of Systane. In the morning I repeat the Zaditor and then place a drop of Systane on my contact lens before putting it in AND a drop in my eyes. I don’t know why, but the combination of the drop on my lens and in my eye is key. It’s as if the double layer of liquid creates a barrier from dust and pollens. I notice a difference if I don’t do it.

When I am home, I use Zaditor less because my need is less but I always carry a bottle of Systane with me to help me out during the day.

Thanks to both these products I literally and figuratively, have a solution.


Zaditor Antihistamine Eye Drops Twin Pack 0.34 Fl oz

Zaditor Antihistamine Eye Drops Twin Pack 0.34 Fl oz

Buy on Amazon


Systane Ultra Lubricant Eye Drops, Twin Pack, 10-mL Each

Systane Ultra Lubricant Eye Drops, Twin Pack, 10-mL Each

Buy on Amazon


Systane Lubricant Eye Gel Drops, 10-mL

Screen Shot 2019-01-28 at 8.46.40 PM.png

Buy on Amazon


Nothing is sponsored but this post does contain affiliate links, meaning if you buy something I’ll make a small commission at no extra cost to you. 


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Between arid destinations, long-haul flights, dust and wind, my eyes are a mess when I travel. Systane and Zaditor are magic. Best way to beat dry eyes.

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