When were were getting ready to travel to Costa Rica, we were asked to provide our blood types. I admit that I was a little worried about why we might need to disclose our blood types for a trip. We have traveled a decent amount and have never needed to know. Because we were going through an agency with a set travel package, we had to know.
We didn’t know our blood types but assumed our doctor would have it “on file” or that it would be listed on birth certificates. There was nothing on file at the office and no listing of blood types on birth certificates. I even called the hospital where our kids were both born. They didn’t have the blood type listed either.
Do You Know Your Blood Type
Knowing your blood type is little like having an airbag…even if you don’t ever need to use it; it’s there. Knowing your blood type seems like a pretty good idea.
Given that we were on short notice for this trip, we had to scramble to figure out how to determine all of our blood types. We ran into a few problems.
- Doctors’ office: Initially, we thought this was the solution. Our doctors’ office said we had to schedule an appointment, which would take 2-weeks to get in and then results would take another couple of weeks. The cost was around $200/person and was not covered by our insurance.
- American Red Cross: They used to do this test without giving blood but stopped. It got to be too expensive so it’s no longer a service they offer.
- Give blood: It’s a great thing to do and then they can run the test to determine your blood type. You need to find a blood drive in your area – at a time you can make AND you have to be over 16-years-old. Great for us but not for our 14-year-old daughter.
- Traveler’s Clinic: Our local hospital has a traveler’s clinic and we thought for sure this was our solution. Nope. They administer shots for travelers going to foreign countries but don’t do blood tests.
We ended up using Google to help us. We found a company – Direct Labs – who does medical testing for many types of tests. You pay for the tests you need online and take your test requests/receipt to a local lab who handles the blood draw – or other tests – and they send it to Direct Labs. We had the blood drawn on Friday and by Monday morning, had the results emailed to us. The cost was about $44/person – a big savings over a visit to our doctor.
Blood type testing differs by state. It’s a very simple test that can be done at birth – when blood is typically drawn for other tests – but in the state of Oregon, you have to request it. I don’t know the rules in other states but it may be worth checking into – especially if you have blood work in your future!
Do you know your blood type?
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Disclosure: The Costa Rica Tourism Board provided our family with an amazing trip to Costa Rica. This is being disclosed in accordance with the FTC’s guidelines.