It’s the most wonderful time of the year when many of us are traveling home. While I love a good road trip, having food allergies can make the whole process a little more complicated. I’m sure you know how it feels: at home you have complete control over everything you cook and eat, but when you’re thrown out in the real world, it can get pretty scary! Don’t worry, here are a few of my favorite tips for staying healthy, happy, and safe during any of your travels.
1. Plan Ahead
Ok, this is probably my favorite tip. List making is my favorite past-time, and I’m only partially kidding. But even if you don’t crave bullet points like I do, taking a few minutes to plan out your trip can really make a huge impact. Think through travel snacks, allergen-friendly restaurants, and hotel accommodations.
2. Pack Snacks
While making pit stops to stock up on Cheetos and Coke are no longer an option for me, if I’m road tripping, I still have to have some awesome snacks on hand! Some of my favorites are popcorn, fruit, hummus with veggies, and rice cakes with peanut butter. I also like to make all kinds of trail mix with whatever I have in my kitchen. Chex, Cheerios, chocolate chips, dried fruits, toasted nuts–anything goes!
3. Do Your Research
Before you leave home, think about the places you’ll be traveling through. If you’ll be at the airport, check out what restaurants are available in the food courts and go through their menus. For chains, you can usually find these online, and often they even have allergens listed. If you’re driving, decide where your best stops will be. Often I find it really helpful to call restaurants ahead of time (preferably when it’s not a busy time for them) to ask what options they will have that you can eat. If all else fails, have a picnic! This is by far my favorite option. And sure you can go off on a little side trip and have a legit picnic complete with a checked blanket and a bottle of rosé, or, more realistically, you can take advantage of public rest stops.
4. Plan Your Hotels
Honestly these days my husband and I usually stay at extended stay hotels. Yes, some can be a little sketchy, but there are actually a lot of really good ones out there. These places are amazing because you typically have a full sized fridge, an oven, a microwave, and basic cooking tools. It makes it so easy to take leftovers from home or restaurants along with you, and it also gives you the option to cook simple meals for yourself while there. However, if I’m not staying at an extended stay place, I’ll definitely call the hotel ahead of time and see if they can offer a mini fridge and microwave.
*See! Look how much fun this girl is having!*
Happy travels, everyone!