Traveling With Food Allergies,

Food Sensitivities, or Preferences

decorative block

Traveling with food allergies, or traveling with children who have food allergies, is a cause of genuine concern for many people. Not knowing where to eat and what to eat to avoid an allergic reaction is often a source of travel anxiety that discourages people from traveling to Costa Rica—or any other country they haven’t ventured.

Your food allergy travel concerns and hesitations are completely valid. 

That’s why we offer these trips! To allow our friends with food allergies, intolerances, and sensitivities the opportunity to travel worry-free. We work with our staff and vendor partners in Costa Rica to minimize these concerns, and remove the barriers that limit you from seeing the world.

We want you to know that you can still enjoy an authentic Costa Rican adventure with food allergies, sensitivities, intolerances, or even picky-eating preferences!

I always felt comfortable and safe while being immersed in the local culture and cuisine! My child and I both have celiac disease, so being able to rest assured that she was safe and not going to be exposed to gluten and become ill during our trip meant the world to me.

One of the things that was so amazing was the zip line which I could never Imagine doing. It was wonderful and I was so happy I experienced it! Also going to the park that was actually closed and they let us in. I twas the most beautiful place with tropical flowers everywhere and you feel like you're in heaven! There are the most beautiful sunsets I have ever seen. Where we stayed we could see the volcano right out the sliding glass door. That was amazing!

Most Common Food Allergies and Sensitivities

Food allergies and sensitivities are incredibly common! An estimated 5% of adults and 8% of children are affected by various types of food allergies, including:

    • Gluten allergy
    • Wheat allergy
    • Tree nut allergy (almonds, cashews, walnuts)
    • Peanut allergy
    • Milk allergy or lactose intolerance
    • Egg allergy
    • Shellfish allergy
    • Soy allergy
    • Fish allergy
decorative block

Strict Food Preferences or Practices

Whatever your specific trigger, preference or diet may require, we can help you to make informed choices on your meals and avoid specific ingredients.

People who travel as pescatarian, vegetarian or vegan in Costa Rica can maintain their lifestyle without considerable limitation or restriction. That’s because traditional Costa Rican food naturally includes a lot of vegetarian and vegan dishes! Authentic Costa Rican recipes are fresh, healthy and simple. (Fortunately for celiac and gluten free travelers, authentic Costa Rican food doesn’t typically contain common allergens or gluten as fillers).

If you’re a picky eater, or you have a child who’s a picky eater, you don’t have to feel discouraged or hesitant when planning a trip to Costa Rica! Let us do the work. We’ll save you the stress of hunting for restaurants or specific meals that comply with a strict diet.

How We Help You When Traveling With Food Allergies:

When you book a trip with Zaney Travel, we’ll send you a questionnaire to fill out about your food preferences or allergies. We don’t want you to feel embarrassed, ashamed, or anxious. It’s okay if your food restriction isn’t technically an allergy; we’ll still treat it as though it is. We will provide you with personalized guidance to minimize your anxieties and meet your needs—no matter how specific they may be. 

Here’s what we can do to help you travel worry-free with food allergies:

  • Kitchen Inspections

    We can inspect kitchens to ensure that the restaurant you select is gluten-free compliant. We have established connections with staff at the restaurants we frequent, and are happy to take this step to ensure your comfort and safety.

  • Notify Restaurant Staff

    Talk to the chef, waiters or waitresses before you arrive to notify them of your specific intolerance, sensitivity or allergy.

  • Make Recommendations

    We recommend tried-and-true, authentic restaurants that we’ve either been to ourselves or have trusted advisors we communicate with who deem the food celiac-friendly.

  • Provide Our Celiac Card

    We provide you and the restaurant chef with a gluten free travel/information card that communicates your needs in their native language.

  • Advise

    We will advise you on the glutenous offenders that we know of in various foods, so that you can avoid them.

  • Research

    We research the restaurant you plan to eat at beforehand to notify the chef of your allergy, and to advise you on the delicious, gluten free options available.

We believe in maintaining open communication with restaurant servers and chefs to ensure that you aren’t walking into an unpredictable situation. It’s our goal to normalize the communication of any needs, restrictions and preferences that may hinder you from experiencing Costa Rica in its traditional and authentic nature.

It all starts by filling out the form below. Once you fill out the information form, you will be contacted by our founder, Zane Greathouse. He will then schedule a call with you to discuss your needs, hear your preferences, and pinpoint your concerns to give you confidence in your extraordinary Costa Rican adventure.

Extra Peace of Mind

These gluten free restaurant cards are translated into Spanish and written in a friendly way.

While there are many other gluten-free cards for Celiacs available, we prefer our version because it speaks to the culture of Costa Rica – which is friendly and helpful.

There are two sizes, 4×6″ and a bi-fold half page, both of which can be printed and cut for your convenience.

What it says:

Hello, I need your help, please.
I have a disease called celiac disease. If I eat foods that contain gluten, I will get very sick. I am very careful about the foods I eat.

  • I cannot eat foods that contain flour or cereals, such as: wheat, barley, oats or rye.
  • I cannot eat foods that have wheat flour or breadcrumbs.
  • I cannot eat soy sauce, MSG or any sauce.
  • I cannot eat any food that has been cooked with gluten.
  • My food should not be cooked with oil, hands, cutting boards, pans or utensils that have been used with foods that contain gluten.

If you are not sure if the food is gluten free, please tell me.

I can eat many other things that you might prepare here, such as beans and rice, cheese, corn, eggs, fruits, meat and fish, milk, potatoes and vegetables.

Thank you very much!

Fill out the form to be redirected to download the cards. A link will also be emailed to you (be sure to check your spam folder if you haven’t received it).

image of Celiac translation cards

    The celiac card looks great, and I'm really looking forward to using it on my upcoming trip to Costa Rica. I discovered your services through Taylor Silfverduk (@celiacdietician) on instagram, a while back, and then the stars aligned for me to take a much needed trip.