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Travelling With Food Allergies: Top 5 Airline Tips

Whether you’re heading out on vacation or travel due to work, airline travel can be one of the most stressful parts of the entire process.  Part of this is because airlines may not have very clear allergy policies or even if they are clear, how airline staff apply those policies can vary greatly from flight to flight.  Of course, you’ll want to bring your own safe food on board for longer flights  but besides that, let’s talk about the top 5 things you can do to increase your safety that are 100% within your control.

  1.  Carry 2 epinephrine auto-injector devices with you on your person at all times (do NOT pack in your luggage) with your prescription label clearly visible on each device.
  2. Carry 2 kinds of travel wipes with you at all times – 1 pack suitable for surface disinfecting and 1 pack suitable for hand wiping.
  3. With the surface disinfecting wipes, wipe down all hard surfaces at your seat from the travel tray to the viewing screen and any buttons, including the seat belt.  If it’s a leather seat, wipe it too, including the crevices to the best of your ability.
  4. If it makes you more comfortable, take a washable blanket (and a plastic bag to keep it in after) or a disposable plastic sheet (ie light picnic table cover) with you to cover the seat itself prior to sitting on it.
  5. Wash your hands before eating or drinking anything, even water, preferably with running water and soap in the airline lavatory.  Can’t get to the running water?  This is when hand sanitizing wipes come in.  While sanitizing gels cannot remove/denature allergic proteins, wipes can physically remove proteins from your skin surface, making them a good alternative to proper handwashing.

Ideally, the airline gives you time to board ahead to take care of your needs at your seat.  But even if they do not, preparing the seat itself doesn’t take a lot of time after which you can sit down and complete the wipedown of the rest of your area without unduly holding up any boarding processes.  Take the time – your safety and comfort level is worth it.

Alana Elliott is the Founder and President of Libre Naturals (formerly Nonuttin’ Foods), a gluten free and allergy friendly food company she founded in response to her family’s many food allergies and immune disorders. 

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