Travel With Food Allergies

Eiffel Tower-food allergy travel

First Steps

G is a bit of a home-body.  The rest of us are trying to convert him to loving travel.  We’ll drag him kicking and screaming over to our side if we need to.  I do understand his reluctance for travel.  Leaving the familiar can be a giant step when you have food allergies and travel to foreign countries where English may or may not be spoken can be frightening.  We figure if he gets comfortable traveling with us as his security blanket then when he is older he may come to enjoy travel adventures.

We didn’t jump off the high diving board into the deep end of the Czech Republic on our first trip with G, we started off wading in the baby pool.  We dipped our toes into Hawaii (usually with a self catering unit), Disneyland, cruises and visits to understanding relatives.  Over time we came up with some strategies, one of which is to plan ahead and bring lots of allergy friendly food.  For example we now make a batch of dry pancake mix ready for the soy milk.  Beware though… traveling with a large ziplock full of white powder may get you into trouble at the border, as we found out!  That story another time…

Two years ago we ventured overseas to the UK.  We had a house for a week in London so we did most of our own cooking.  Shopping was a dream!  Their labeling laws are fantastic.  Clear, easy to understand and I didn’t need my new dollar store reading glasses to decipher what the food contained.  I’m envious.  Here in Canada even young 13 year old eyes can have trouble seeing the print on some ingredient lists.

Then it was time to try a foreign language country.  Embarrassingly enough, even though I am Canadian, I do think of France as a foreign language country (my high school French just doesn’t cut it).  Being an EU country, France has great labeling laws as well and many of the foods in stores have English ingredients printed on the labels as well as the French.  Stick to these and you’ll do fine.  G couldn’t indulge with us in fresh from the bakery croissants for breakfast but he did enjoy homemade pancakes from the suspicious white powder.

Next stop the Czech Republic!  We’ll have to be extra prepared.  How do you say “Honest… it’s not cocaine” in Czech?