Traveling when you follow a restricted diet can provide some unique challenges. Although many airlines have discontinued serving peanuts as a snack, not all the items they serve are gluten free. To be safe pack your own snacks to avoid being stuck with nothing to eat on your flight.
Most airlines do not offer gluten-free meals, and many airport restaurants do not offer gluten-free menu options. Do a little research, if you have a connecting flight check out the website of your connecting flights. Most airport websites list restaurants available on site.
Some airlines offer special meals for individuals following certain diets including gluten-free. Only a few indicate that their meals are approved and monitored by a registered dietitian. Therefore, it is up to you to contact the airline regarding their gluten-free standards. Most airlines require customers to pre-order special meals 24-72 hours in advance. Also, check if the glute-free foods are prepackaged. Your flight attendant may not realize how easily cross contamination can happen.
Packing some gluten-free snacks and even meals from home can save you time, money, and stress when traveling. Flight delays or missed connections can place unneeded stress on your travels. Always be prepared for the unexpected.
Follow the steps below to pack a TSA approved snack or meal.
For ultimate ease pack, dry snacks. However, if you do want to take liquids or “gels” such as yogurt, hummus, salad dressing, or dips be aware that you must comply with TSA regulations. Any liquid or gel must be in a sealed container with no more than 100 ml (3.4oz) per container. Place all liquids and gels (this includes any carry-on toiletries) into a single quart-sized Ziploc bag.
Each traveler is allowed only one Ziploc bag.
Only pack whole fruit through security. Half eaten bananas or apples will be confiscated unless placed into a bag or properly wrapped.
Dry snacks or sandwiches can be packed if they are wrapped or are in a sealed container. Do not wrap with aluminum foil as it will interfere with the x-ray machines.
Packing your Carry On:
Bringing gluten-free snacks and meals from home can make flying both easier and healthier. Airline meals are often high in sodium and rich in calories. Furthermore, the amount of water served on long flights is not enough to stay properly hydrated. This combination can easily promote dehydration and fatigue. Choosing to bring fresh whole fruits and vegetables and other low sodium snack options can help you stay fit and fueled a mile high.
Choosing to pack naturally gluten-free foods such as whole fruits and chopped veggies, as well as cheese, nuts, and seeds, can help keep you full and satisfied when on the go. Minimally processed snack foods such as plain corn chips, popcorn, or rice cakes can be great additions as well.
Whether traveling for work or pleasure planning can help reduce your stress and insure your travel is enjoyable.