Practical information

Take in plenty of food that can be easily cooked, such as microwaveable stuff in pots. Also things to snack on for when you don't feel so hungry.


Your place of treatment will provide you with meals, although your family and friends will have to make their own arrangements.You can also ask family and friends to bring food and drink in for you, but you must check with your ward for guidance about this. If you're well enough and your nurse says it's OK, you could pop out and pick up a takeaway for yourself, or ask family and friends to bring one in for you.

You should inform the staff if you have particular requirements, such as kosher, halal, vegetarian or gluten free.

Some wards now have their own chefs, which means you may be able to choose what to eat and when. Talk to your hospital team to see if this is available where you are being treated.

Hospital parking

Travelling to and from hospital can be expensive. Also, the cost and availability of parking at hospital is something many people find to be a challenge. Parking at some hospitals is free, but many charge or offer discounted season tickets (valid for weeks or months). Check your hospital’s website for details, or speak to a member of your care team.

You can talk to one of CLIC Sargent's welfare advisers about claiming back travel expenses if you have eligible welfare benefits. Contact them using the details on the right of this page.

Homes from Home

CLIC Sargent has Homes from Home close to specialist hospitals across the UK. They offer free self-catering accommodation. If you are being treated at one of these principal centres you, your family or partner, may be able to stay in a Home from Home while you are receiving treatment.

Staying at CLIC House was great. It made such a difference being close to the hospital. My mum stayed with me the whole time.

To find out more, speak to a member of your care team, call us on 0300 330 0803 or email

Travel websites

  • Traveline - impartial information on public transport in England, Scotland and Wales
  • Translink - public transport information for Northern Ireland
  • National Rail - train times and information for England, Scotland and Wales
  • Google Maps - area maps and information to help plan journeys.


Always check with your hospital to find out what their guidance is about people visiting you.

If your hospital doesn't have fixed visiting hours, it's worth planning for people to visit at different points throughout the day. This helps to break up your time and can make days pass more quickly. It also helps to avoid situations when visitors turn up at the same time and you can't spend quality time with anyone.

There might be days when you feel too tired or just can't be bothered to see visitors. To help with this, a good idea is to ask visitors to text before they come so you can tell them how you're feeling or give you a chance to get ready for their arrival.


Internet access is only provided on some hospital wards. To have constant access, you might find it helpful to buy a SIM card or dongle from a mobile phone company if you own a laptop or tablet. You could also access the internet through a smartphone. Remember to check what charges apply first. Check with your hospital team to find out what works on your ward or day care unit.

Patient Advice and Liaison Service

If you have any problems in hospital, it's always best to speak to a member of your care team so they can try to resolve the issue. But if a problem persists, you may find it helpful to get in touch with your local Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS). It makes sure the NHS listens to patients, their relatives, carers and friends, and resolves concerns as quickly as possible. Visit and search for 'PALS' to find out more.

Content last reviewed: November 2015
Next planned review: 2016