Picture this: You are going to Walt Disney World. They most amazing place ever! Lots of rides, characters, shows, and food all over the place. OH NO! Food… Lots of food, Cupcakes, Ice Cream, Dole Whips, Pretzels, and Popcorn, almost everything a food allergy child can’t have. Yes, this sounds easy enough. Just don’t give it to them. This is the common belief, and I thought this way before having a food allergy child. My exact thought was: Yes, it’s sad your child can’t have that, but don’t give it to them, and they will be alright, correct? WRONG! When you are a food allergy parent and child you have to think of things people don’t always think of. You must remember that someone could of eaten that Mickey Ice Cream Bar, had it all of their hands, then grabbed the lap bar on Winnie The Pooh, and now my kid has it on their hands, and now I have to get out my epi-pen.
It’s crazy what you have to think of as a food allergy parent, but out of everywhere I have ever taken my child Disney is the most accommodating and helpful for my food allergy child. Today I want to share with you Three Tips for Traveling to Disney with Food Allergies.
Food Allergy Tip Number 1: Remember the wipes. I use baby wipes all over the world. Do I wipe down a ride before he gets on? Absolutely not. But do I wipe his hands as soon as we sit on a ride? Yes I do. He poor little hands should be raw by the time our vacation is over. I wipe them when we sit on a ride, when we get off of a ride, when he sits on a bench, when he touches an elevator button, the list is endless. For some this sounds obsessive, but he has a deathly allergy of peanuts, eggs, and corn syrup. Trust me, it’s in everything, and it’s everywhere. I’d rather wipe his hands down and look like a germaphobic mother, than to have to pull out my epi-pen or Benadryl on my vacation.
Food Allergy Tip Number Two: every restaurant you go to in Disney World, including Quick Serve Restaurants are beyond accommodating. Be sure to tell the waiter/waitress/cashier that you have a food allergy child. The Chef/Manager will then come out and speak to you about what your child can have on the menu. When we went to Rainforest Café at Animal Kingdom, unfortunately there was not one thing that my child could have on the menu. Nothing. The Chef went to the back, came back, and went back to the kitchen again. Finally, he created a meal that was not even on the menu for him. Now that is some service!
Food Allergy Tip Number 3: Try not to obsess. Yes, I say that after I just made the confession that I wipe his hands down after everything he does, but the chances are very slim of your child having a reaction from touching the lap bar on a ride. Disney is very clean, they clean all the time and you don’t have to worry about food particles being left in various places. They are very good about cleaning all of this up. Enjoy your time! I know as a food allergy parent, that my mind goes to places it shouldn’t on a regular basis. My mind wonders to what if that child who just gave my child a hug had peanut butter on his hands… We need to just step back and have a good time!
When I am in Disney I feel that it is a vacation from my child’s food allergy. This is because Disney does the work for me! They tell me what he can eat! I wish restaurants all over the world would do this! It would make life so much easier! So, Food Allergy Parents use the tools that Disney gives you and take a vacation from the fear of food allergies!
Angela is a Disney Vacation Specialist and Orlando Travel Expert with Destinations in Florida. She specializes in traveling with young children, and children with food allergies. She would love to plan your next vacation! You can contact her on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/