Are you planning a trip to Asia but are allergic to some things? If you are feeling anxious about it, you have good reasons to feel that way. First, you will be in an unfamiliar place, there is a language barrier, and then you have an allergy to certain foods.
Luckily, your food allergy shouldn’t be a deal-breaker for your dream to see the world. You should still go for it. However, some health tips can come in handy when it comes to traveling to Asia as an allergy sufferer.
Keep reading to find out how you can stay safe during your trip to Asia.
Health Tips for Traveling to Asia with an Allergy
- Research your destination
Asia is comprised of many countries with different cultures and foods. Thus, make sure to do some research on the food practices and cuisine of the regions you will be visiting. What are their primary dishes? What kind of ingredients do they use?
Doing this will help you to know which dishes contain your allergen so you can avoid it. When doing the research, also check out the available restaurants in your destination. You might be lucky to find a chain restaurant that is familiar to you, making it easy to order food.
In addition to that, if you are traveling to Asia with an allergy, you should look for the available hospitals, ambulances, taxi services, and emergency phone numbers.
Note that information down on paper and keep it close to you for the most obvious reason, in case of a medical emergency.
- Carry your medication with you
Better safe than sorry, the saying goes. So, as you pack everything else you need for your trip, remember to pack your allergy medication too. It is a precautionary measure that will keep you healthy and safe when traveling to Asia as an allergy sufferer. Having your allergy medication with you will also give you peace of mind.
Pack some of the medicines in your suitcase and others in your hand luggage for easy access in case of an emergency. For women travelers, carry some of the medicine in your handbag or pulse. Ensure you bring more than you need in order to be on the safer side.
To avoid trouble with the airport security personnel, travel with your prescription and a doctor’s letter that explains why you must bring the medicines.
- Call the airline or restaurant beforehand
As an allergy sufferer, you can’t always just walk into restaurants and find foods you aren’t allergic to ready. So, one of the health tips for traveling to Asia with an allergy is to call the restaurant you will visit beforehand to make a reservation and inform them what shouldn’t be added to your dish.
If possible, request to speak with the chef directly. Waiters and hostesses aren’t always savvy about what goes on in the kitchen.
The same applies to the airline. If, for instance, you have a nut allergy and are worried the snacks offered during the flight to Asia aren’t nut-free, call the airline earlier so that they can provide nut-free snacks.
- Carry translation cards or Google translate things
If you are concerned about how you will let the waiters or airplane staff know that you have an allergy to particular foods when there is a language barrier, you can get around that. Bring translation cards with you. These are cards explaining your allergy in the language of the country of destination.
You will only need to show it to the waiter attending to you, and they will avoid serving the foods that cause an allergic reaction. You can write the card by yourself or print it out.
On the other hand, Google translate will help when translating the ingredients of a particular product.
- Bring your own food
If you can’t shake off the fear of being served foods that will cause an allergic reaction, there is the option of bringing food with you. So, one of the best health tips for traveling to Asia with an allergy is to pack non-perishable allergy-free foods from home.
Pack enough food to take you through the flight and a few more days. You will save yourself a lot of trouble with foreign delicacies and enjoy your trip.
- Inform your fellow travelers about your allergy
Traveling as a group is less scary for allergy sufferers because they get more people taking care of them. Thus, if the trip to Asia is with a friend or group, let them know about your allergy and how to know when you are reacting.
Tell them about the kind of medication you take, and what they can do in case you need emergency medical attention. Sharing such vital information will help you stay healthy and safe while traveling to Asia with an allergy.
Your friends will also avoid having the bystander effect if you get an allergic reaction and they don’t know what to do to help you.
- Get travel insurance
When traveling to Asia, ensure your food allergy is covered under your travel insurance. Like any insurance claim, this will help you get compensated in the unfortunate event of being admitted to the hospital or if you require helicopter evacuation.
A trip to Asia is not complete until you have tasted the local delicacies. But for allergy sufferers, this can be scary.
No one wants to feel uncomfortable, get checked into a hospital, or have to be evacuated while traveling. It is, therefore, necessary to take precautions before and during the trip to ensure you have fun the way you planned till the last minute, even with an allergy.
Thankfully, the above health tips will enable you to enjoy traveling to Asia as an allergy sufferer.
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