Travelling with allergies

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Prepare in advance

  • If you have chosen to travel by plane, consider and research the different airlines’ allergy policies. Are there allergy free meals available? Are there allergy free areas or ‘buffer zones’ aboard the flight? Contact the airline in advance as they may be better able to cater for your needs.
  • If you have booked an all-inclusive holiday, inquire in advance of your stay to find out their arrangements for food preparation.
  • If you are going for a self catered holiday, research the local area. Are there any pubs or restaurant chains in a close proximity?  If you phone up and explain your allergies they may be able to take special precautions. Alternatively, see if they have a website with menus available. By preparing in advance it may provide peace of mind and confidence wherever you choose to eat.
  • Find out where the nearest hospital is and what the phone number for an ambulance is.
  •  If you have an iPhone with the ios 8 update, fill in your medical ID which can be found on the lockscreen on the emergency call screen. You can tap in a contact number and the details of your allergies, reactions and medication. If you are travelling abroad you could write this information in the local language (as well as in English).

Pack your EpiPens

  • You must always have your adrenaline injectors close at hand.
  • Don’t put your EpiPen in your suitcase, carry it in your hand luggage.
  • When you have arrived at your destination there are various ways that you can carry your EpiPens discreetly. However, make sure you let whoever you are travelling with know where they are and how to use them if a reaction occurs. Also make them aware of the symptoms of anaphylaxis. 

18403134_10156028651886808_2928590101825595685_nCheck and double check ingredients

  • Whether you are purchasing food from a supermarket, a restaurant or elsewhere, check the ingredients.
  • If you are travelling abroad you may need to know the local language. However you do not need to be fluent, as you can find translation cards here, here and here. Write down a list of translations of what you are allergic to and how to ask anyone about it. If you are unsure about whether a food contains an ingredient you are allergic to, don’t risk it.
  • If there is a may contain label find an alternative.

Enjoy your holiday!

For more information and advice about living with anaphylaxis, head to the Anaphylaxis Campaign website. Follow our blog on twitter.

Patrick 🙂

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