Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Traveling to Poland with Food Allergies or Sensitivities

Traveling to a foreign land can be scary. It's even more scarier when you have food allergies or sensitivities. You may not always have the luxury of being able to pack ahead food or even have a place to store it if you are traveling the countryside of another country.

First, make a card that list your allergies in whatever language you will be among. You can show this card to the wait staff, hotel staff, and others that you feel need to know about your allergies. There are several ways to get one.

You can print out this emergency card.

You can also have an allergy card made with your specific type of allergies. I prefer this website over others because you can print it multiple times and it doesn't have to be mailed to you. You might want to laminate it so it won't get torn or wet. I would also recommend to bring multiple copies of the allergy cards on your trip just in case you lose one.

Here's resources for allergies that I've found helpful for traveling to Poland:

Gluten Free Resources:
List of Gluten free Restaurants
Guide to traveling in Poland gluten free
Polish gluten free products (you might want a pocket translator to help decipher some of the topics)

Vegetarian Resources:
Restaurants in Warsaw
List of Vegetarian restaurants in Poland by city

Lactose Free Resources: 
I couldn't find any resources on how to go lactose free in Poland. If you find them, please let me know so I can post them. If you are lactose free, check the super markets like Tesco, Piotr i Pawel, Alma, and other health foods stores for lactose free versions of your favorite groceries.

Peanut/Nut Resources:
Same with the Lactose free, I couldn't find any resources on being nut free in Poland. If you find them, please let me know so I can post them. Poland uses a lot of nuts in their dishes. Be sure to print out one of those medical emergency cards and allergy cards. Play it safe.


If you do have a severe allergy that causes you to seek out medical attention, research the nearest hospitals and know where they are located in the cities that you are staying at.

If you're in Poland, you can dial 999 for emergency help. Here's an article about receiving emergency medical help in Poland.

And before you leave for your trip, make sure your Epipen doesn't expire while you travel. Ask your doctor on how to prepare for international travel with your allergies. They might give you another Epipen script and great advice if you find yourself in a sticky situation.

If you're traveling with a group, notify them of your allergies as well. While you're in anaphalactic shock, they can communicate to the authorities for you if they know what is going on ahead of time.

And last tip, of course, bring your medications. If you take allergy medicines, Epipens, Benadryl, inhalers, Lactaid pills, etc...,Poland has a great pharmacy but it might be tough to navigate if you are having an allergic reaction. Prepare in advance for your medical emergencies.

Here's an article that gives tips on traveling with a food allergy. The author has a severe nut allergy and she gives great advice on how to travel internationally.

Here are some general articles about traveling with allergies:
https://www.foodallergy.org/managing-food-allergies/traveling
http://www.suitcasesandstrollers.com/interviews/view/travelling-with-allergies-dietary-requirements 
https://www.passporthealthusa.com/2013/08/tips-for-managing-food-allergies-on-an-international-trip/

Do you travel with food allergies? Please share your tips!

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