When traveling, the last thing you want to hear about, think about or worry about are restrictions. At the airport there are luggage restrictions, at the theme parks there are height restrictions. All of these, of course, are put into place to keep everyone safe and to make things flow smoothly. And if you’re traveling with a restriction of your own, more specifically a dietary restriction, you may find it hard to find a safe place to eat.
However, in true Disney style, the theme parks and resorts on Disney property have thought of everything when it comes to accommodating dietary restrictions. Disney restaurants know how serious food allergies can be, and with a little bit if knowledge and preparation, you and your family can enjoy a worry free meal while at the parks,
According to Disney’s website, they can accommodate the following food allergies:
- Gluten or wheat
- Lactose or milk
- Peanuts and tree nuts
Many restaurants offer separate menus with detailed dscriptions of the options that are safe for a particular allergy. Just ask for this menu and one will be provided for you. When eating at a “sit-down” restaurant, mention any serious food allergies to your server right away, so they can take note and make extra precautions to ensure the food you receive is safe. It is important to know that Disney doesn’t have separate kitchens to prepare allergen-friendly food, so the possibility of cross contamination, although not likely, is still possible.
Most Quick Service and Table Service restaurants will have a separate allergy specific menu for guests to order from. When visiting a buffet, guests are encouraged to speak with a manager about their certain food allergies. Many times, families have been escorted by a manager through the buffet line, and given the opportunity to see the food selection and ask any questions about food prep and handling before they order.
As with everything Disney, the more prepared you are, the better. When making dining reservations, mention the allergy. This will give the restaurant plenty of notice to make sure they have options available for you. When making online reservations, there is a box where you can write in any allergies or restrictions you may have, and when you make reservations by phone you can simply tell the cast member about your situation so they can make note of it.
Families looking for Kosher or Halal Meals will also be able to find something suitable at select Disney restaurants. These requests need to be made 24 hrs in advance and can be made by calling the Walt Disney Dining Reservations Line.
When food allergies are severe, many families like to make and pack their own food to eat while enjoying the parks. You can even bring your own food into the restaurants, just let someone at Security know when you enter the park that you have food in your bag and the reason why, and you won’t have a problem.
Guests who stay in vacation homes near Disney have the luxury of heading “home”, making a safe lunch or snack, and the easily heading back to the parks.
While you’re on vacation, you shouldn’t have to worry about restrictions. With a little preparation, you’ll be able to enjoy a delicious meal with your family, worry free.