If you love to travel, Celiac disease shouldn’t be something that stops you from getting out there and seeing what this world is really made up of. So, I have prepared a list of some great celiac travel tips to show you how easy Gluten Free travel really is!
I know, I know. In the beginning it can seem to be very daunting. You know, heading over to random countries without knowing what to eat, how to communicate with locals and whether you will find yourself eating rice and beans every single night abroad.
Of course it can appear tough. Hell, I mean when I first started to travel I was just 17 and new to the whole Celiac disease thing, having only being diagnosed 2 years prior. Which by all means back then in 2003 Celiac disease was basically unheard of, which didn’t make travel for me any easier to say the least!
But alas, working my bum off and gallivanting to every continent bar Antarctica over the years, I have acquired some great celiac travel tips that will certainly help you with your travel goals.
This is the Alpha and the Omega of the celiac travel tips. Preparation, it is the one thing you can constantly perfect every single trip. At least every trip, I now know I will learn something new. Which helps me a lot by adding it to my prep list before I head off on an adventure.
So, as you skim through these celiac travel tips, jot them down and add them to your prep list also. This way you know you will be covered on all angles before you head off. Because after all, travelling on a GF diet is mostly about confidence and once you have prepared enough for your trip, you will be confident enough to know you have covered all angles.
Learn a little language
I generally find that learning a little of the language can be quite key as one of those celiac travel tips you should prepare for. Especially if you are heading to a really rural area somewhere abroad where the majority of people will not know much English at all. I find that just by learning a few basics you can really get by with ease. “Gluten Free travel phrases”( – LINK )such as these will really help you out.
Staying hydrated is incredibly important too, even if you are not a Celiac. To be honest, the more water you drink, the less food your body will need. In saying that though you can’t just go ahead and drink 5L of water per day and not eat. That would just be silly, what I am saying is. You will still need to eat food but keeping yourself hydrated will stop you from getting hungry more often. Which is why having a bottle of water with you when you start to get hungry, especially without any GF food in sight, is a great idea.
As I mentioned early, preparation is so important. Which is why you should be prepared for the times you can’t find yourself any Gluten Free food. For example, I always carry with me a banana or two, along with some trail mix (nuts, dried fruit and seeds). You could always bring with you GF snacks, such as GF cookies or snack bars, chips, crackers, or anything you feel you can carry easily in a small backpack. I find that having some snacks and water with me at all times works really well, especially when it comes time for food and there is nothing on offer that is Gluten Free.
Of these celiac travel tips, booking ahead is the most basic and common one you should consider doing every single time you travel. You need to do this more often than not if you aren’t very familiar with a place and haven’t researched enough to cover all your bases. So if you are going on holiday to a resort, be sure to call ahead and inform them of your allergy so they can prepare. One thing I used to always forget was to book ahead for my flight, and by saying that, I mean informing them of my Gluten allergy so they can cater a Gluten Free Plane Meal for me. I can’t remember how many times I have been stuck on the plane with just water and maybe a few pieces of fruit, I can tell you it’s not ideal. Please learn from my mistakes here on this one.
Never, ever underestimate the power of research! The more you do the more equipped you are to deal with problems that may occur on your travels. My advice is to research the types of foods you can and can’t eat in the countries that you are looking to visit. You may also want to research where you can get these foods from, types and names of restaurants that do Gluten Free foods also. The more information you have on your side, the better your travels will be.
Stick to what you know
If in doubt, go without. I am sure you have heard this before and if ever something crosses your mind that it may have Gluten in it. Leave it out and instead stick to what you know. For example rice dishes, vegetables, meat, fruit, nuts, seeds and etc.
Sticking to the basics and going with what you know is always a safe bet, you don’t want to get caught out and potentially ruin your holiday by being a little risky with your meal choices.
That’s right, most people forget we are all quite capable of cooking a meal, even if you are on holiday. So If you can’t find anywhere to eat, don’t forget you can cook for yourself. If you are in a hostel, an apartment, or anywhere with access to a kitchen for that matter and can’t find any gluten free places to eat. Be sure to cook yourself up a delicious GF feed. You will not only save your pennies, but also your body too when you are having a tough time finding something to eat.
So there you have it, some helpful celiac travel tips to ensure you can keep adventuring on longer and further. If you too have any great celiac travel tips of your own, please feel free to let us know all about them in the comment box below.