Travelling with a child with an anaphylactic allergy

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travelling with an Anaphylactic allergy

We love to travel as a family to all inclusive resorts and we always have an amazing time!   After our son had an anaphylactic reaction to nuts, it did make me think twice about whether we should continue to travel as we had in the past.  Would it be safe for my son to eat at the resort? What if something happened on the plane?  How would we know what would be safe for him to eat?  What if something went wrong and he needed medical attention?  Would there be too much of a language barrier? All of this and more flooded my mind.  Of course we still wanted to vacation but were we putting our child at risk?  I researched and asked a LOT of questions.

Here was and always will be our “Anaphylactic Travel Plan”

On the plane

Generally, most airlines do not serve nuts as their main in-flight snack but that’s not to say that some of the snacks may contain traces of nuts.  We did run into a flight within the US that did serve peanuts as the snack and if our son had been sensitive to airborne particulate we would have been in quite the predicament.  In advance of booking, we recommend you contact the airline directly and see what their policy is in regards to nuts. Air Canada and WestJet have phased peanuts out of their onboard snacks but can not guarantee that meals have not come into contact with nuts or that other passengers will not bring nuts onboard.  They will however, provide a “buffer zone” in rows around you where they will ask passengers not to consume nuts.  Specifics on their policy regarding customers with allergies can be found at Air Canada and WestJet.  Here is how we further handle the allergy on the plane…

  • We notify the Airline as well as the travel agent of the allergy when booking
  • We pack 4 EpiPens in our carry on bag.  We figure, in the case of an emergency this will give them time to land the plane for medical assistance if the onboard medicines don’t help.  Be sure that the EpiPens are in there original state so that they are affixed with the prescription with the  child’s name on it.  We have never had an issue getting through security with our EpiPens but asking your Dr. for a note to accompany you may not be a bad idea.
  • Try and take the first flight out in the morning as the plane is at it’s cleanest and there is less chance of cross contamination.
  • Bring sanitary wipes to wipe down snack trays, arm rests and windows
  • Pack your own snacks.  This works great for us as our son is a picky eater so his fave snacks keep him happy on the plane (and at the resort) and we are assured that they are free of nuts.

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At the Resort

We became more particular in the resort we chose to vacation at once we found out about the allergy.  The resort’s reputation is key but I have always been a big researcher when it comes to what will suit our family’s fun needs anyhow! Now, I look into the resort’s close proximity to a city with a hospital in case of an emergency.   I also test out the resort’s customer service and quick response to an email before I book.  I figure if they are quick to respond to a simple question, then they are more than likely going to be attentive to our health needs.  Once booked, here is how we handle the allergy at the resort…

  • Prior to arrival I contact the Concierge and Food & Drink Manager via email to alert them of my son’s allergy, the date of our arrival and duration of our stay.  Generally, they will book our A la carte dinners before we even arrive to ensure the allergy isn’t lost in the shuffle.  Many resorts will automatically do this but I request that they put a note on our reservations at all restaurants about the allergy and ask them to provide us with a translated letter we can carry with us at the resort explaining the allergy.
  • Once at the resort I make a point of finding the Concierge and Manager and introducing myself to them to make sure everything is in line.
  • At Buffet restaurants we tend to stick to the fresh prepared stations where we know what is going into his food.   Most desserts have a high chance of cross contamination so we tend to stick to soft serve ice cream from a machine or we dip into our nut free snacks we brought with us.  Our son will take a Hershey bar over dessert any day.
  • Allergy alert cards can be ordered from SelectWisely as an added precaution.  These cards are laminated and translated into any language you choose and also include pictures of the specific allergen on it.
  • We carry EpiPens on us wherever we go within the resort
  • If our son goes into the kid’s club for a period of time we let them know of the allergy, inform them they are to feed him nothing, tell our son not to eat anything (he’s 7 now so this works for us) and we make sure to take one of their paging devices so they can contact us if need be.

Really, not much needs to change when you are faced with an allergy in the family and you want to travel.  Take some time to do the extra planning and then go and enjoy making memories on your family vacation!

You CAN travel as a family of five (or more)

dreams-punta-cana-overview

A common thing I hear from friends that have 3 or more children is that it is hard to find a resort in the Caribbean that can accommodate their family without it costing them an arm and leg.  Well look no further my friends because I have done the research for you!  All of these resorts will accommodate your family and promises to be a great sunny getaway so that you can sit back, relax and make memories that will last a lifetime.  Happy Vacation planning!

Aruba

Divi Village Golf and Beach Resort

The Divi Village Golf & Beach Resort is centered on a large, sparkling freshwater pool, with views of the beach located directly across from the resort. Spacious studios, one, and two-bedroom suites surround the main pool area and offer fully equipped kitchens and private balconies with ocean and garden views. A unique collection of premium golf view suites are located along the course and fronted by a magnificent freeform pool with swim access bar.

Barbados

Almond Casuarina Beach 

Almond Resorts in Barbados offers three great all-inclusive resort destinations with one amazing Caribbean experience. For groups, weddings, couples, families and singles – for all those seeking a personalized experience without rules, without worries – we promise breathtaking views, lushly landscaped gardens, countless activities, exceptional cuisine and friendly, helpful people.

Cuba

Paradisus Varadero Resort & Spa

Located beachfront in Rincon Francés, part of the Varadero ecological reserve. Five-Star Ultra All InclusiveEco-Resort with 510 rooms. This charming world is privileged with elegance, refinement and privacy, especially its Royal Service. Recommended for families, weddings, honeymoons, incentives and wellness/spa.

Sol Sirenas Coral

All Inclusive Four Star resort with 651 rooms. Located alongside the beach in Varadero. Hotel complex surrounded by tropical gardens which convey an informal atmosphere. The property excels for its superb entertainment program. Recommended for families traveling with children.

Sol Palmeras

All Inclusive Four-Star Resort, with 608 rooms. Privileged location alongside Varadero Beach. Spectacular hotel – bungalow complex with refreshing swimming pools surrounded by gardens, terraces and bars. The property excels for the comfort of its rooms, unique décor of its buffet restaurant buffet with gourmet- show cooking and fun-packed entertainment programs. Recommended for families, golf enthusiasts, honeymooners and groups.

Sol Río De Luna y Mares

Four -Star All Inclusive Resort with 464 rooms. Located beachfront in Playa Esmeralda, on the northern coast of Holguin province, where visitors will be amazed by the dazzling superposition of blues and greens from the sea, sky and costal shrubbery. This hotel complex is surrounded by extensive green areas and offers a wide variety of services and attractions. Recommended for families, weddings, honeymoons and tourist groups.

Dominican Republic            


Meliá Caribe Tropical 

This resort sets the standard for family oriented all-inclusive hotels in Punta Cana.  The beach at Meliá Caribe Tropical is simply spectacular, and is only one of the resort’s many impressive features. The Punta Cana hotel has over a dozen restaurants to choose from so you can have a wide variety of international dining experiences during your stay. With a world-class golf course right across the street, an exciting casino and the most thrilling activities in Punta Cana, Meliá Caribe Tropical is the perfect choice for your next family vacation. The Flintstones have found the perfect place for their holidays: they are staying with your family in one of our first theme hotels. Your kids can explore the Yabba-Dabba-Doo bazaar, gardens and swimming pools just like those Fred, Wilma, Barney and Betty enjoyed. Let yourself be surprised!

Dreams Punta Cana

Dreams Punta Cana Resort & Spa provides stunning palm-studded beaches surrounded by flourishing vegetation. This Unlimited-Luxury® resort is an undiscovered treasure offering couples and couples with children one of the largest pools in the Dominican Republic which flows from the lobby down to the beach, complete with a swim-up bar and venues throughout. Kids can enjoy activities and entertainment at the explorer’s club and teens can chill out in the core zone while adults relax poolside or at the full-service spa.

Barcelo Bavaro Palace Deluxe

On the seafront of one of the 10 best beaches in the world,  Barcelo Bavaro’s beach is protected by a coral reef that makes the pristine sea perfectly calm. Fabulous hotel facilities include an incredible, luxurious spa swimming pools, gymnasium, shopping centre and a mini-club for the little ones. At night you can enjoy the lively nightlife at the hotel: shows, discos, casino.

Ocean Blue & Sand

Ocean Blue & Sand Beach Resort is a luxury 24 hours all inclusive resort, with private Jacuzzi in all Junior suites, a lovely beach, plus the finest selection of themed restaurants and an exceptional coffee house. The resort offers everything from a bowling alley and special sports to breathtaking free form pools with swing up bars, Jacuzzis and children area.

Jamaica

Beaches Ocho Rios

If you’re looking for a family beachfront getaway with an intimate private beach, a Pirates Island Waterpark, extra large accommodations, the only all-inclusive golf program for kids and near Jamaica’s best attractions, Beaches Ocho Rios is for you.

Beaches Negril

The vibe here is totally carefree and about spending time with those you love. Spread out over a lushly landscaped 20 acres, Beaches Negril epitomizes paradise with spectacular gardens beside the sea, a sprawling Pirates Island waterpark, and plenty of activities and amenities for the whole family. For those who want a little tranquility and a whole lot of cool, it all begins with a beach vacation at the best all – inclusive resort in Negril.

Franklin D Roosevelt

Your all-inclusive vacation in Jamaica at the Franklyn D. Resort & Spa will be a most memorable family experience!  From friendly, caring and interactive staff, including your family’s own Vacation Nanny, their all-inclusive  vacation packages include the best of food, drinks, accommodations and activities for families.

Riu Montego Bay, Jamaica

Riu Montego Bay offers deluxe accommodations and a wide variety of activities in a beautiful setting. Riu Montego Bay sits along a shimmering beach, in harmony with its tropical surroundings. This island oasis offers deluxe accommodations in a stunning setting surrounded by an unspoiled natural environment. Montego Bay continues to grow and provides a well-rounded range of services and shops in addition to tropical, turquoise waters. This is a wonderful vacation destination for both romantic getaways and family vacations! RIU Resorts prides themselves on customer satisfaction and Riu Montego Bay is no exception!

Mexico

Azul Beach Hotel

Azul Beach Hotel is a family-friendly, boutique-style property located on a gorgeous beach 20 minutes from Cancun International Airport. All suites are just steps from the beach, pools, restaurants and bars.  Azul Beach especially caters to families with young children with loaner baby equipment, kid’s club and parent support. The exclusive Family & Friends Vacation Planner coordinates family reunions. Romantic couples love Beachfront Sky Massages and Suite Scenes.

Dreams Puerto Aventuras Resort & Spa

A perfect escape for the entire family!  This resort offers six gourmet restaurants, Gorgeous swimming pools, 24-hour room service, fantastic kid’s club and a friendly staff to ensure your vacation is relaxing and fun.

Dreams Cancun

Dreams Cancun exclusively situated at the tip of Punta Cancun and surrounded on three sides by the crystal-clear Caribbean, offers couples, singles and families Unlimited-Luxury® along with the exciting Delphinus, the on-site dolphin aquarium. Guests will surely be satisfied with a range of activities and entertainment ranging from world-class Dreams Spa by Pevonia and is located just steps away from shops and the nightlife of Cancun.

Gran Sirenis Riviera Maya

This resort is in a class of its own due to its spectacular design, which brings to mind the ancient Mayan buildings, yet at the same time of a modern, minimalist style which blends perfectly with the luxurious natural vegetation in the gardens. Set in a fascinating environment, your holiday there will be a dream come true…

Meliá Puerto Vallarta

Paradise for families and couples, where there is something for everyone and where everything is included. A wide variety of snacks and meals, domestic and imported drinks and recreational activities for all ages, spectacular evening shows performed by professional dancers, with a different program every night, and the largest pool in Vallarta! The Flintstones have found the perfect place for their holidays: they are staying with your family in one of our first theme hotels: Yabba-Dabba-Doo bazaar, Roca Flash, RocAdventure, Baby Rock Club, Bamm Bamm Club and Cool Club. Let yourself be surprised!

Melia Cozumel All Inclusive Beach & Golf Resort

Featuring an array of amenities, facilities and unlimited amounts of fun, this beautiful beachfront resort is directly across the street from the island’s premier golf course designed by the Nicklaus Design Group and just three miles from San Miguel, Cozumel’s main shopping area. The perfect place to enjoy the crystal clear waters of the Caribbean Sea and the white-sand beaches for which Cozumel is well known; Meliá Cozumel offers a casual, comfortable and inviting resort experience that is certain to satisfy one and all. The Flintstones have found the perfect place for their vacation! They will be enjoying one of our first theme hotels. Look out for them at the Yabba-Dabba-Doo Bazaar as well as in the gardens and at the swimming pools!

Riu Emerald Bay, Mazatlan

Riu Emerald Bay dazzles guests with spectacular ocean views from almost every spot on the property. From the impressive lobby to the elegant guestrooms that feature signature RIU amenities, this outstanding all inclusive resort is the perfect place for couples, families, and singles seeking a beautiful retreat on the shores of the sapphire Pacific Ocean. Children will have the time of their lives at the supervised RiuLand Kids Club, while adults can pamper themselves at the world class Renova Spa or enjoy some quiet time alone.  Dining options are sure to please all palates with gourmet restaurants serving global cuisines. Featuring golden, sandy beaches and a laid back atmosphere, the Riu Emerald Bay is the perfect destination for all ages.

Sandos Caracol Eco-Resort & Spa

A Riviera Maya family resort located in the luxurious residential complex of Grand Coral, which has the most amazing facilities offering great Riviera Maya all inclusive family activities perfect for keeping the children entertained. A fun water park with colorful water slides and amazing kid’s club, are just some of the features that make Sandos Caracol, the ideal family getaway.

Turks & Caicos

Dive into a one-of-a-kind, unbelievably exciting all-inclusive for the whole family. A 45,000 square-foot waterpark; three magnificent villages, boasting the architecture and ambiance of Italy, France and the Caribbean; a 12-mile beach lapped by clear turquoise waters; endless fun activities for everyone, from tots to tweens and teens, featuring Sesame Street® characters, the new Xbox 360® Game Garage and a sizzlin’ teen disco, Liquid at Beaches-all located on one of the world’s best beaches.
St. Lucia
Coconut Bay Beach Resort & Spa (Depending on children’s ages you may need to be  in an adjoining room)

Guests of all ages will indulge in Splash, Coconut Bay’s family friendly wing with areas intended to delight the young at heart. Colorful rooms face the ocean and overlook CocoLand, St. Lucia’s largest water park featuring a large activity pool, lazy river and exciting water slides. Also on the Splash side is the Caribbean’s first paintball facility able to host 10 players.  The fully supervised Kidz Klub is nearby and easy to find by the gleeful sounds of youngsters enjoying its water feature, expansive pirate ship and air-conditioned indoor play room.

Morgan Bay Beach Resort

Morgan Bay Beach Resort is a vibrant, colorful, and refreshingly casual All-Inclusive resort, distinguished by its romantic waterfront setting.  The wide array of accommodations, activities, water sports, restaurants, bars, and amenities make Morgan Bay your ideal destination for a relaxing tropical getaway.

Welcome to Vacationing with Kids

We are excited to have you join us at Vacationing with Kids! When you hear Vacation WITH kids do you start laughing hysterically, start rocking back and forth or break out in hives? I used to feel the same way but family vacations can actually be enjoyable and create some of the best memories. I found the key was being prepared and gathering as much information and insights before we went so once we got to our destination we could relax and have fun.  My goal is to provide you with easy and pain free ways to plan and execute a memorable vacation with your kids by arming you with as much information as possible. You don’t need to be pulling out your hair and stressing out because we are here to help. Whether you are planning a trip south, have decided to camp (or Glamp) or just want a day trip with the family….you can find the information here. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to get even more up to date information.  Wishing you happy travels!