Newest Review: ... if you are going on holiday to a hot country, or even on a long car journey, the wallet is simply activated with water. You remo... more
The Frio Duo Insulin Wallet
Frio Insulin Travel Wallet
Member Name: bwinter90
Frio Insulin Travel Wallet
Date: 11/09/11, updated on 11/09/11 (51 review reads)
Advantages: Kept my insulin cool, looks nice
Disadvantages: Didn't work as well during very hot temperatures
The FRIO Insulin wallet is a cleverly designed product which provides cool storage for insulin when travelling. I have been diabetic for 10+ years and have never considered the storage of insulin when going on holiday to be a problem. I normally carry the insulin in my hand luggage in a plastic container until we reach our destination, and then I place it in the fridge. However, on my most recent holiday, the hotel we were staying in did not provide a fridge in the room, but offered to keep it in the restaurant fridge instead. I was concerned with this, as it could easily be discarded or the fridge could be too cold/not cold enough and then the insulin would be damaged. After my dietician suggested the FRIO to me, I decided to invest, and ordered the FRIO duo from medicalshop.co.uk. This website allows you to buy medical products exempt from VAT if you are diabetic.
The FRIO comes in 5 different sizes -
*Individual - Holds one insulin pen
*Small - Holds 5 3ml insulin cartridges or 2 vials of insulin
*Duo - Holds 2 pens or 1 pen and 2 cartridges
*Large - Holds 1 pen and 10 3ml insulin cartridges or 2 pens and 5 cartridges or 5 disposable pens or 4 vials of insulin
*Extra Large - Holds 1 pen and 40 3ml insulin cartridges or 8 disposable pens or 8 vials of insulin
Prices range from £12.00 - £18.99 (exc VAT).
My FRIO arrived quickly, and included directions for use and storage. I ordered the red colour, which looks nice. There are two layers, an inside pocket which contains what feels like silicone gel crystals, and an outside "Cambrelle" pocket. To activate the inside pocket, just soak in water for a number of minutes (soaking time varies depending on size of FRIO wallet) until the crystals turn to gel, and then pat down the wet pocket with a towel/paper towel. When the gel has settled, you can place the activated pack inside the cambrelle pocket. Your insulin is then ready to be stored.
The product relies on evaporation to work correctly. As the water is evaporated from the crystals, the contents of the pocket are cooled. Because of this, the FRIO wallet cannot be kept in an airtight container, but instead it must be in contact with the air. As a suggestion, I read somewhere that an ideal place to keep your FRIO wallet containing insulin is in a mesh pocket on a handbag/rucksack. I kept mine in my hand luggage, right at the top, with the zip open, and it seemed to work perfectly. I was concerned there may be issues when going through airport security, as the FRIO gel is of course a liquid. However, I mentioned I had insulin and a gel cooler and there were no further questions asked.
At first, whilst on the plane, I was shocked and impressed by how cool the insulin was kept. It also remained very cool whilst in the room, with the air con on. However, I used the pocket to keep my insulin pen in, and when out and about in the hot air in Spain where temperatures were about 35C, it didn't do as good a job. Although the insulin did not become hot as it may have without the wallet, it didn't actually feel cold, just mildly cool.
The instructions say that after a few days, as soon as the gel begins to crystallise, the pocket needs to be re-soaked. This happened after approx 4 days, and re-soaking was easy and reactivated the wallet immediately. It is also handy to know that the FRIO is reusable time and time again, as long as it is dried out and stored correctly after use. I'll definitely be using mine every time I travel in future.
To summarise, a product well worth the money, as it worked the majority of the time (just not as well in long periods of hot weather), and definitely kept my insulin cooler than it would have been without the FRIO.
A must have for diabetics who are travelling and need to store their insulin safely!
Summary: A must have for diabetics who are travelling and need to store their insulin safely!