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sarkay85

International travel and packing food in checked bags

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I will be traveling with a large group from the US to Spain and France. I would like to take a supply of backup food with me but I'm not sure what I can take through Customs. Does anyone have recent experience to know if things like Epic bites, almond butter packets, Kind bars, or other pre-packaged gluten-free treats are ok to bring into Europe? Suggestions welcome - thanks!

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This should be of some help https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/whatcanibring/food  

NOTE some country's forbid certain foods to be brought in, normally these are exotic and odd ones but some health food bars do contain stuff they might find questionable. Do also check with your destination. But from the look of this you can bring just about anything in your checked luggage. carry on has very small size limits on butters, jellys, or anything in a semi liquid form.  You should also be fine with meal replacement shakes, bars, any prepackaged treats, etc. Check and see what you can get at your destination or if you can have some stuff shipped/mailed to your hotel to avoid bloating your luggage with foods.


Diagnosed Issues
Celiac (Gluten Ataxia, and Villi Damage dia. 2014, Villi mostly healed on gluten-free diet 2017 confirmed by scope)
Ulcerative Colitis (Dia, 2017), ADHD, Bipolar, Asperger Syndrome (form of autism)
Allergies Corn, Whey
Sensitivities/Intolerances
Peanuts (resolved 2019), Cellulose Gel, Lactose, Soy, Yeast
Olives (Seems to have resolved or gone mostly away as of Jan, 2017), Sesame (Gone away as of June 2017, still slight Nausea)
Enzyme issues with digesting some foods I have to take Pancreatic Enzymes Since mine does not work right, additional food prep steps also
Low Tolerance for sugars and carbs (Glucose spikes and UC Flares)
Occupation Gluten Free Bakery, Paleo Based Chef/Food Catering

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You can pack pre-packed gluten-free items in your checked luggage.  Just do not bring raw goods like fruit and veggies (we met nice dogs who sniff these items out along the way....because my kid love dogs not because we were smuggling!) Make sure you pack food to take with you on the plane.  Even though airlines will offer gluten-free meals for international flights, in my experience, 50% of the time, they mess up.  Even after placing the initial order months a head of time and confirming just before the flight.  

When you get to Spain and France, you will find cheese, yogurt, fresh fruit and veggies, potato chips (Lays!), cookies, etc. available in every little market.  Take gluten-free  restaurant cards (Google) with you.  These are also helpful in markets though I found everything in Spain and France to be clearly marked.  Bring a few disposable spoons, etc or purchase when you hit your first market.  Research the towns and find gluten-free restaurants reviewed by celiacs.  We often broke from our group (large family) to eat on our own.  Upon arrival in each town, I walked around at the first opportunity to find food at a market for back-up.   Pack your snacks in case you are unable to find food each day.  

You will enjoy your trip so much if you are prepared and are willing to go with the flow!  

Have fun!  

P.S.  I hope you are not lactose intolerant, but France has some awesome gelato.  I think you can live on that alone.  ?

And your tour guide should have some tips....I would imagine.  

Edited by cyclinglady

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