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A holiday should be a fun time to enjoy some much-needed R and R with loved ones.  However, a food allergy can sometimes dampen the festivities. Despite the fact that the person cannot control their allergies or how they react to something, it can be a common frustration when travellers need to leave certain places due to the potential for the allergen. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. Going on holiday with a food allergy can be fun and frustration-free.  You just need to focus on the preparation side:

1) Pre-plan eating arrangements:

Planning your food ahead of time may feel like a hassle, but it can actually be great for all sorts of reasons. Including, of course, taking a look at the menus and getting an idea for the potential for allergens.  Avoid any places that can’t confirm allergen-free spots, or at least be very cautious in visiting. Be very careful if you have a food allergy as it could be life-threatening and scary if you are in a foreign country.

2) Let your travelling companions know ahead of time:

If you are travelling with friends and family, let them be aware of an allergen ahead of time, as it means they won’t bring anything with the potential for a reaction (snacks, for example) and they’ll also be on the look-out with you to make sure that you don’t accidentally end up in a situation with an allergen present. It is important you research and let people know about your food allergy.

3) Inform your doctor if you have a food allergy:

No matter how near or far you’re travelling, it’s always a good idea to let your doctor know that you are travelling and even ask for extra epinephrine shots (if needed) so that you are prepared for anything. It’s also a great idea to keep your doctor’s contact information on you when travelling just in case.

4) Alert servers and other staff at all points of the trip:

No matter where you go, alert servers, hotel staff, airline professionals have more knowledge about the allergen. They may be able to accommodate you having extra medication as well as make sure that you don’t get an allergen food by mistake.  Do this with as much advance notice as possible, as preparation is important.

5) Be realistic in your travelling location:

Despite the fact that we should all be able to travel the world stress-free about reactions, there are some spots that are just not a great idea. For example, China and India can be very hard for those with common food allergies. So, it’s best to do your research and make a decision for your travelling location based on realistic expectations. Maybe you can look to avoid these places if you are suffering from a food allergy.

Being on holiday with an allergy can be as fun as those without allergies. You just need to put the proper planning in place to make sure that you are avoiding anywhere that you know is going to be a problem, and making sure that you and your travelling companions are prepared for the worst-case scenario.