Flying with a peanut allergy

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I have been fortunate enough to move to Vancouver, Canada. But I have a problem! Flying out of Canada has proved not only stressful but indeed extremley dangerous to our 8 year old son who has a severe nut allergy. We flew Alaska Airlines to Palm Springs in Dec and were assured that the flight was peanut free, it was. You might think whats the problem. Here goes, in order to double check that it is a peanut free flight we always ask the departure gate stewart to check for us and also to make an announcement asking people to refrain from having nuts while they are on board. This is the problem, they cannot get it into their ignorant heads just how dangerous it would be for our son to board the aircraft if there was somebody eating nuts. We were having our usual heated discussion when a passerby said "I cannot believe you have told your 8 year old son that he could die if he ate nuts - you may as well put him in a bubble" Can you imagine my surprse and anger at this comment. We know it is a huge risk that we take but he would never be able to go on holidays or indeed fly to England to see his grandparents if he was not able to fly. After great deliberation we got onto the flight and indeed it was peanut free!! But we can no longer garuantee that Alaska Airlines or any other airlines will be peanut free flights. I would love to receive some comments about this. I am new to this bulletin board and have been overwhelmed by the amount of problems we all come across just by trying to give our PA children a normal,happy and most importantly safe childhood. Thanks Tina

On Feb 11, 2002

Tina, I too am from Canada, and last year flew to Disney World with my family on Canada 3000. They did ensure, when I called ahead that they didn't serve peanuts, but not thinking, did not have any announcement made. The man sitting on my left, had 2 different peanut snacks, and I started sweating! I'm PA, and so is my daughter, who was on my right. Truthfully, I was too scared to say anything to him, because like you encountered, you never know how people will react. I moved my daughter up a row, with my husband, and I tried not to breathe! Luckily, we were all OK, because it's an awful feeling having even a minor reaction in the air! Why can't people live without peanuts?? I don't get it!! jillsmom

On Feb 11, 2002

Hi Jillsmom

Thanks for your reply. I am so nervous about flying, we have a holiday coming up with Air Canada who have assured me about their peanut policy on not providing peanuts as a snack. Keep your fingers crossed for us. Have you ever had an air reaction and if so what did you do?

Thanks again Tina

On Feb 12, 2002

Westjet also does not serve peanuts on flights.

[url="http://c0dsp.westjet.com/internet/sky/"]http://c0dsp.westjet.com/internet/sky/[/url]

On Feb 12, 2002

Hi Tina. I'm sorry your flying experience was not a good one. Unfortunally, there are always those people who do not understand. Our son has a peanut allergy and it is very severe. We travel by air several times a year and have taken him abroad. I am always nervous, but we take all the precautions needed to ensure a safe flight. We ALWAYS fly first flight of the day. I personally feel the risk of airborn nut dust is at it's lowest. After I make our reservations and make them aware of our special needs I write to the corporate office with my flight information and request. When I arrive at the airport I always have the airlines corporate confirmation response in my hot little hand. Then once I pre-board (with little ones) I find the Sr. Flight Attendant and show her the letter to confirm the flight will be peanut-free. This gives them time to make other snack arrangements if needed. I also ask that they make an announcement asking other passengers to refrain from consuming peanuts while on the airplane. Another suggestion is to sit in a bulk head area which gives you a buffer zone. Hope this helps!

[This message has been edited by dominick'smom (edited February 12, 2002).]

On Feb 12, 2002

Quote:

Originally posted by dominick'smom: [b]Hi Tina. I'm sorry your flying experience was not a good one. Unfortunally, there are always those people who do not understand. Our son has a peanut allergy and it is very severe. We travel by air several times a year and have taken him abroad. I am always nervous, but we take all the precautions needed to ensure a safe flight. We ALWAYS fly first flight of the day. I personally feel the risk of airborn nut dust is at it's lowest. After I make our reservations and make them aware of our special needs I write to the corporate office with my flight information and request. When I arrive at the airport I always have the airlines corporate confirmation response in my hot little hand. Then once I pre-board (with little ones) I find the Sr. Flight Attendant and show her the letter to confirm the flight will be peanut-free. This gives them time to make other snack arrangements if needed. I also ask that they make an announcement asking other passengers to refrain from consuming peanuts while on the airplane. Another suggestion is to sit in a bulk head area which gives you a buffer zone. Hope this helps!

[This message has been edited by dominick'smom (edited February 12, 2002).][/b]

dominick'smom,

Many, many thanks for your reply. Somehow it makes you feel a little better knowing there are people out there who understand what you are going through. I found your advice invaluable, we do take some of those precautions but your advice about sitting in the bulk head and taking an early flight honestly never occured to me. AND from now on I shall be writing rather than calling ahead of time. Thanks again Tina

On Feb 16, 2002

I just flew Air Canada to the US. Just wanted to mention two things: Going down they served Lays, Doritos and KitKat (Cdn) but coming back they served pretzels, in packaging unfamiliar to me. We just declined them so I have no other details. Too bad it wasn't the same both ways - I had high hopes. We had to go through security a total of 5 times and no one questioned our epi-pens [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] Have a safe trip!

On Feb 17, 2002

Quote:

Originally posted by Patricia: [b]I just flew Air Canada to the US. Just wanted to mention two things: Going down they served Lays, Doritos and KitKat (Cdn) but coming back they served pretzels, in packaging unfamiliar to me. We just declined them so I have no other details. Too bad it wasn't the same both ways - I had high hopes. We had to go through security a total of 5 times and no one questioned our epi-pens [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] Have a safe trip![/b]

Hi Patricia Thanks for your info, sounds like you had a terrific flight out of Canada. I hope this is the same for us both ways. We have never had to show our epi-pens. This trip I am so nervous about considering how bad our last trip was. I will let people know all about it on my return.

Thanks again for replying Tina

On Feb 17, 2002

Quote:

Originally posted by Patricia: [b]I just flew Air Canada to the US. Just wanted to mention two things: Going down they served Lays, Doritos and KitKat (Cdn) but coming back they served pretzels, in packaging unfamiliar to me. We just declined them so I have no other details. Too bad it wasn't the same both ways - I had high hopes. We had to go through security a total of 5 times and no one questioned our epi-pens [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img] Have a safe trip![/b]

Hi Patricia, Thanks for your info. I only hope we are as lucky travelling both ways. I am so nervous about this trip because of what happened the last time. I will keep everyone informed about what happed on my return. Thanks again for replying Tina

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