Traveling with a nut allergy can oftentimes be a daunting task. With so much running through your mind the day you leave for a trip, stress relief comes to those who prepare. After you pre-plan and figure out all the big things, it’s the small things that can make traveling with a nut allergy a little bit easier. I wrote an article about our top tips for traveling with a nut allergy — Tips on Traveling With a Nut Allergy, and another article on how to stay safe while flying — Flying With a Peanut Allergy. Be sure to read up on those tips if you’re still in the pre-planning phase. They’ll help you with all your travel prep.
Once you do your research, meet with your allergist, get your food allergy cards translated, make sure your travel insurance covers anaphylaxis, pick an airline, and know what accommodations they’ve agreed to provide, the next step is to plan for how to make the most of your actual day of travel.
We like these five products and think some variation of them can help make your travel day as easy and stress free as possible. While the most important thing is to prepare by finding the right airline and travel accommodations, these travel products will help you stay organized and comfortable while up in the air, riding a bus, or road tripping through new terrain.
1. LOKASS Lunch Bag
This LOKASS Lunch Bag (Amazon) is an upgraded, sophisticated take on your standard reusable lunchbox. It looks beautiful, and comes in 12 colors. It’s bigger than your standard lunchbox, measuring 10.5″L x 6″W x 11”H, and has an insulated lining. The insulated lining protects your bag and protects the other contents too as it’s able to catch leaks and spills. It even has a side pocket for coffee! Or — water, soda, tea, vitamin water, or soup in a thermos. It’s easy to clean, and I think it makes a great option for storing nut free snacks in a carry-on.
If you’re traveling with a nut allergy on an airplane, or driving through territory you aren’t familiar with, you’ll want to bring lots of staple snacks along for the trip while traveling with a nut allergy. This lunch box is perfect for storing them. If you’re flying, I think it’s a nice gesture to offer one of your favorite nut free snacks to the passengers in the surrounding seats to thank them for being a part of your nut free buffer zone.
If you’re packing whole meals to go, the insulated lining will help keep them fresh. If you’re taking warm foods with you, this lunch box will help keep your food warm. If you’re taking cold food, this box will help keep your food cool. It’s advertised as being able to preserve food for 6.5 hours, cold or hot.
What’s really special, and what I like most about this bag, is it’s larger size. Because its shape expands and it can be really roomy, it’s able to store a stack of rectangular Tupperware containers. I much prefer packing up Tupperware in a neat pile of stackable organization with traveling with a nut allergy, rather than a big messy pile of plastic baggies.
Amazon also offers a bundle that pairs a LOKASS Lunch Bag with a Reusable Silicone Food Bag (Amazon). The silicone bag is non-toxic, BPA free, plastic free, and PVC free. It’s liquid proof seal is nice because you won’t have to worry as much about liquids spilling out like you might need to with a regular plastic bag. Sometimes those seals leak liquids. One less thing to worry about while traveling with a nut allergy.
Last update on 2021-09-26 // Source: Amazon
2. Travel Blanket
One of the things I mentioned in our article Flying With a Peanut Allergy, is how you’ll want to avoid using blankets that the airline provides to travelers. It sounds gross, but you just don’t know when the last time those blankets were cleaned. You don’t want to risk any sort of cross-contamination while traveling with a nut allergy. You don’t want to touch a blanket someone else used in the flight before yours, after they were wrapped up in that blanket while eating nuts.
That being said, sometimes planes get cold. I thought this EverSnug Travel Blanket and Pillow (Amazon) was a nice way to bring a cozy blanket with you so you don’t need to rely on any of the blankets a plane provides. I love how it slips over the handle of your suitcase while traveling with a nut allergy.
Amazon advertises it as a 2-in-1 blanket and pillow, as it can also be used as a pillow when the blanket is folded up inside it’s case. Personally, I’d prefer bringing a real pillow. To use the blanket as a pillow you’d have to keep the blanket folded up. So if you use it as a pillow, you won’t be able to use it as a blanket. If I were forced to choose between a blanket or a pillow, I’d choose a blanket. That’s just me. I don’t like being cold.
I think it’s nice that it has the option of being used as a pillow if you find yourself in a situation where you go on a road trip with friends and they bring an extra blanket, etc, so you won’t need yours. In some cases like that, then the 2-in-1 option would be nice to have. But truly, the reason I picked this blanket was because I really like how it won’t take up storage in your suitcase. And because it’s easily accessible, which is especially helpful while traveling with a nut allergy.
3. Neck Pillow
Similarly to airline blankets, you’ll probably want to avoid any airline pillows. The travel pillows that are kept on airplanes will also be potentially hazardous. They could be carriers of peanut particles. Again, you don’t know who used the pillows in the flight before yours, and whether or not it was cleaned since someone used it after eating nuts or peanuts.
There are all different kinds of travel pillows available, online or in certain markets. I think the “best travel pillow” will be a matter of personal preference.
I like this ComfoArray Travel Pillow (Amazon). It comes with a traveling case and an eye mask. It’s made from memory foam and I love memory foam. It’s portable and designed with intention. It’s so small, which makes it nice for traveling with a nut allergy. It offers neck support to prevent neck cramping, and it’s also machine washable.
If you’re into a more traditional shaped pillow, this travel pillow by Compact Technologies (Amazon) is basically a smaller sized standard pillow, also made of memory foam.
I’ve also heard good things about the MyPillow roll and go travel pillow (Amazon). It’s similar to the full-sized MyPillow, but it’s just a little bit smaller. And, you can roll it up! It’s 12” x 18”, machine washable, and comes in 20 different styles. This choice seems like a really flexible option, useful in a lot of different situations that might come up while traveling with a nut allergy.
This neck pillow by Amazon Basics is the style type that I see most while flying. Lots of different types and styles for you to choose from while traveling with a nut allergy. Up to you!
Last update on 2021-09-26 // Source: Amazon
4. Medical ID Bracelet
There are a lot of different kinds of medical ID bracelets to choose from, depending on your style and preferences. To get a picture of what’s available, do a quick google search. You’ll see there are many options out there. I prefer neutral colors and things that look modern, so I like this simple, personalized bracelet by ROAD iD. It’s made of black silicone and has an engravable silver plate that you can personalize. The clasp is made from stainless steel.
Another option is the waterproof USB Medical Alert Bracelet by Universal Medical Data. It lets you store your emergency care plan on a portable USB. It’s not necessarily something I think would be helpful in an acute emergency, since reaction time is so important, and because not everybody will have access to a USB port at the time of their allergic reaction. But, if you’re looking for something that will be a nice investment and helpful year round, this could be an option worth looking into. It allows you to store emergency contact information as well as information on prescriptions through the USB.
If you’re traveling with a nut allergy to an area you don’t normally travel to, it would be nice to have your information on a transferable file. That way you can store any info from your allergist at home and pass on any important medical information you’d want your new doctor to know.
Obviously, if you’re traveling with a nut-allergic child it’s unlikely that they’ll be off on their own. You’ll probably be with them for the majority of their travel experience. But on the non-travel days that are vacation days, they’ll probably have a little more freedom and you’ll want them to wear a medical ID bracelet. I think it’s nice to have your kids wear their bracelet on the plane as well, even when they’re sitting right next to you. It signals to other passengers and airline employees that their allergy is a big deal and should be taken as the serious medical condition it is.
If you’ll be needing a medical ID bracelet for your child, again, lots of options to choose from! The AllerMates Kid’s Medical Bracelet is just one of the many options available to you. And it’s actually a charm bracelet, which I think is so cute! Children get to collect a new charm for every allergen. There’s also an “I carry an EpiPen” charm available. If for some reason one of the charms you purchase falls out with normal wear over time and gets lost, you can simply replace it by buying that charm separately from the same seller.
5. Auto-Injector Storage Case
The EPI-TEMP Epipen Insulated Case (Amazon) is my favorite EpiPen case. I like its design and functionality. It has an epi-temp pack that keeps your epinephrine at it’s proper storage temperature. And it helps regulate the proper temperature for both warm and cold weather. It keeps the temperature inside the case within a range of (59° – 86° F or 15° – 30° C) for up to 2 hours. The PCM’s are rechargeable at room temperature. They need 20-25 minutes of exposure to room temperature air, or exposure to room temperature tap water for 5-10 minutes to recharge. No batteries necessary.
It’s big enough to store two Epi-Pens, a bottle of Benadryl, and your important medical cards. It lets you keep all your important items in one place, which is really nice and convenient. It also has a little loop so you can attach the insulated case to your luggage.
Last update on 2021-09-26 // Source: Amazon
A second option is the PracMedic EPIPEN Carrying Case for Kids (Amazon). Their cases are pretty compact but they’re just big enough to store two epi-pens, a little bit of medication, and important medical cards. It also has a little loop that makes it easier for connecting to your luggage.
With the PracMedic case, I think it’s cute and kid-friendly. It’s a good option if you want your child to get involved with the care of their medicine and to take pride in their EpiPen case. It’s insulated to keep the auto-injectors and other medicine within a proper temperature range while traveling with a nut allergy. There’s no ice pack or a storage pack, but you could still store a small ice pack in one of the inner pouches if you don’t think it’s insulated lining will be strong enough for your particular needs.
Summary of These Products for Traveling With a Nut Allergy
There are probably a lot of small items that can help keep your important items organized. These five suggestions are just a few I consider helpful. When thinking of your own situation, and your own needs, try to envision yourself walking through your travel experiences. Are you taking an airplane? Are you driving through the desert?
What are some potential problems that could interrupt your travel plans? What are some things that could make you feel prepared and at ease if those situations were to occur? Thinking ahead allows you to plan ahead. Then, you can think about how to get organized in case of a certain situation unfolding. Coming up with solutions to potential problems will help you feel prepared and make your travel experience run a little more smoothly.
Consider keeping a travel diary for the first few times you travel with a nut allergy. That way, you can have something to look back on for next time. You can see what worked and what didn’t work. If there’s something that pops into your mind that you think would have made this trip better, write it down and apply that knowledge towards your next trip.
Are you a pro at traveling with a nut allergy? Let us know your go-to travel advice for making traveling with a nut allergy fun and easy. Get in touch with us over at Instagram! We’re @gonutfree. See you there.