Disney and Dietary Needs
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Are you afraid of eating at restaurants because of diabetes, food allergies, or because you’re on a special diet like keto? Well whether you have diabetes, a food allergy or intolerance, or are on a low carb/keto diet, Disney is a great option for you! In my next couple posts I’m going to talk about how you can enjoy every benefit that Disney has to offer for your special dietary need.
With family members who have diabetes, food allergies, and are Keto faithful we have experience with navigating Disney’s allergy friendly menus.
I had honestly never thought about food allergies much before 2015. That year we found out our 13 month old was allergic to milk. Since that diagnosis our family has had a chance to experience Disney with different dietary needs..
A Whole New World
If you don’t already know most everything has some sort of milk (or tree nut, soy, egg, or gluten) product in it. The world is hard out there for those with a food allergy.
It was a whole new world for us. We had to check every cookie or chip, ask family members if their covered dish had a milk product, and search online ingredient menus before going out. If not, we were in for a rough night, week, or month depending on how much dairy was in the food.
Then we took a Disney Cruise followed by a Disney World trip. Like magic, all of our servers already knew about her allergy! I didn’t have to check any ingredients!
We went on a Disney Cruise with Food Allergies…And Survived
We took our cruise before going to the parks. When we booked we specified that Emma had a food allergy. We also made sure that they knew she preferred soy milk over almond milk. That’s it! Then the magic began.
We have quite a few food allergies in our family, including eggs, peanuts, soy, and seafood and we were all on this trip. It could have been a nightmare, but every meal went smoothly. (If you didn’t already know, Disney is very allergy friendly.) Guys, honestly it was like magic for us. We didn’t have to check any food ingredients, we didn’t have to have any emergency diaper changes, and we didn’t have to worry about having a reaction in the middle of a show. WE HAD NO FOOD ALLERGY REACTIONS ALL WEEK. Magic, I’m telling you.
DCL’s Special Dietary Accommodations
Moving on, I want to explain a little bit more about how Disney Cruise Line adapted for us.
Quick Service Dining on Disney Cruise Line
We mostly used the quick service dining for breakfast and lunch, and the formal dining in the evening. The soy milk and almond milk aren’t really advertised, but it was no problem to get either by asking any server. Please be aware that you can’t really make special menu requests at the Quick Service restaurants. They will, however, have a food service specialist available to help you with any food ingredients if you have a question about the buffet items. As long as Disney knows you have a food allergy or intolerance, they will do everything in their power to accommodate you. It is very important that they know before you board the ship so that they can make these accommodations.
Formal Dining on Disney Cruise Line
In the evenings, we went to the formal dining room. Our servers made sure to go over our menus with us to make sure we knew which foods were safe for each family member. If there wasn’t anything on the menus that our kids wanted, they would go above and beyond to find them whatever they wanted.
The servers were always happy to help and willing to make our trip a great one.
Steps to Making Sure Disney Knows about Your Food Intolerance
According to their website, Disney Cruise Line offers dairy free, no sugar added, vegetarian, and gluten free meals. They may also be able to accommodate other dietary needs as well. It’s all about communication. I will be happy to help you navigate these issues while booking your cruise, or you can contact Disney directly.
Disney provides the following information and suggests these steps to make sure they are aware of your special need:
- Notify your travel agent or the Disney Cruise Line Contact Center of your dietary needs.
- Once on board, notify your head server of your dietary needs.
For more information, please visit Disney Cruise Line Special Dietary Requests Page.
Have you been on a Disney Cruise and have special dietary needs? Share your story in the comments!
Planning your Disney Cruise
Did you know that when you use an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner, they make sure that DCL knows all about your allergies and special needs? I can make your vacation planning so much easier.
Let me get you a free quote today =)
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Don’t miss my next posts about Disneying with Diabetes and Low Carb/Keto at Disney World.