When you’re out on a family vacation with kids you need to make sure that everything is carefully planned out. That includes travel itinerary – will you be taking the bus, renting a vehicle or will there be airplane rides; booking of the hotel or resort and the places to visit. One might even be planning out the clothes and gadgets to bring.
However, you should never make the mistake of forgetting the number one rule of traveling and that is never travel overseas without a decent quality first-aid kit. Putting it together is the hardest part; after that, you just need to make sure it is always fully stocked (i.e. quickly replace used items) and check used-by dates on any medications.
The easiest way to start is to go to your local drug store or contact a first aid provider to purchase a ‘base’ kit to which you can add other items. Most items can be obtained inexpensively and should be packed in a small, light, waterproof bag (putting the whole kit into a large zip-lock bag should work too).
Let’s say, while having breakfast in one of the hawker stands in Singapore, you happen to order Thai Shrimp, because it looked so delicious. It just so happens that your child is allergic to peanuts and the cook speaks very little English; so you forget to ask if the dish has peanuts on them and your child eats it. Thankfully the antihistamine for kids that you’ve packed saved you, but what if the reaction has turned into something more serious? This doesn’t mean that you should be scared and just keep yourself locked up inside a room because you or your kid has food allergies.
Indeed traveling with food allergies is a big concern for people. Especially if one enjoys exploring other culture, immersing themselves on their different lifestyle including the different cooking and dishes other countries have to offer. The good news is that there are things that can be done to reduce the chances of having a fun family vacation interrupted by an adverse reaction to a dish or food that you or your family has eaten as suggested by Foodallergy.org.
Here are a few tips you can follow:
- Let the airline know ahead of time of any dietary restrictions if a meal and/or snacks will be served on the flight.
- Check nearby medical facilities in the areas you will be visiting abroad. Is there a hospital within a 500 meter radius from the place you’re staying or will you be isolated?
- Look up the procedure for obtaining prescriptions and medications abroad in case of an emergency. Remember that different countries have different rules when it comes to medication.
- Create and pack a food allergy action plan in the event of an allergic reaction. Pack anti-histamines that you know works for you in order to ensure that nothing adverse ever happens.
- Carry a chef card in the local language which explains the type of food you cannot eat. Show this to your server and the chef/cook at any restaurant that you visit. Read up on the local cuisines online beforehand so you’d know which ones you’d need to avoid.