I love to travel with my family, but the experience isn’t enjoyable for anyone if my son and I can’t eat gluten-free (neither of us has celiac, but we are both gluten intolerant).
Sometimes, I slip into my old-school way of thinking and feel like I’m being “fussy” or “demanding” when I’m being proactive about our food choices. Then I remind myself that no one’s going to have a good time if my son gets that tired, cranky, doesn’t-feel-good low-blood sugar because he doesn’t want to eat.
Hotels are usually very accommodating. I request a mini-fridge and microwave in the room. When we arrive, I’ll visit the local grocery store and stock up on gluten-free supplies like yogurt, fresh fruit, sandwich fixings, and some frozen gluten-free burritos.
Once while vacationing in another state, my son and I went on a gluten-free mother/son dinner outing. We broke out our trusty gluten-free restaurant guide only to be led to a place that was closed.
We live in an area where it’s pretty easy to get a gluten-free meal at a restaurant, so I figured there couldn't be one far away… Two hours later I found a grocery store.
It was not the glamorous mother/son outing I’d imagined, but I’ll never forget the fun of treating ourselves to gluten-free cookies on our ride back to our hotel. It was also the first time my son felt adventurous enough to try his first microwave gluten-free burrito!
Food handling policies for people with food allergies varies from state to state. It’s a good idea to do your homework by asking the hotel to recommend local establishments. You can then call ahead and make sure they have the training to handle the food properly. But just in case, know where the local grocery store is so you can stock that mini-fridge!