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  #1  
Old March 19th, 2013, 12:46 AM
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maureencruiser maureencruiser is offline
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Default Peanut Allergy

Hello All!! Well, as someone with no kids, I never thought I would be starting a thread in this forum! It appears that in 2 weeks, I will be cruising with a friend who has an 11 year old with peanut allergy. I have been searching all the forums and want to make sure I am correct. We will be on RCI's Jewel OTS for a 4 night cruise. From what I have read, we should notify RCI ASAP using their special needs form. People seem to think we will have better success in the MDR versus the buffet where things can get cross-contaminated. They say, talk to the head waiter as soon as we are seated and he will guide us through menu for that night then bring us tomorrows menu so the boy can order for tomorrow. Does this all sound correct to everybody? People also say to ask a manager or a sous chef to help us at the buffet, but, that is riskier. I can't imagine telling an 11 year old he can't eat at the buffet. For him, that will probably be half the fun of the cruise! Bring plenty of medication, Benadryl and epipens, if he uses them. Any other pointers or advice? TIA
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  #2  
Old March 19th, 2013, 06:53 AM
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crusinmama06 crusinmama06 is offline
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Actually they are exactly right. If he is severely allergic then he has grown up knowing his risk at buffets (not just at cruise ships but everywhere).

He would also need to be aware in Adventure Ocean. They have snacks at their parties.

They do ask the parents to fill out the health forms and they will be alerted to his allergies in AO but he will need to be reminded to watch what he eats there. And they do go to dinner with the kids club (it's at the Windjammer and he would be signed up for it) so that another discussion you will have to have with mom. The menu items are kids fare - hamburgers, fries, pizza, etc

Hope you all have an incident free cruise
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  #3  
Old March 19th, 2013, 07:20 AM
Robinhill Robinhill is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maureencruiser View Post
Hello All!! Well, as someone with no kids, I never thought I would be starting a thread in this forum! It appears that in 2 weeks, I will be cruising with a friend who has an 11 year old with peanut allergy. I have been searching all the forums and want to make sure I am correct. We will be on RCI's Jewel OTS for a 4 night cruise. From what I have read, we should notify RCI ASAP using their special needs form. People seem to think we will have better success in the MDR versus the buffet where things can get cross-contaminated. They say, talk to the head waiter as soon as we are seated and he will guide us through menu for that night then bring us tomorrows menu so the boy can order for tomorrow. Does this all sound correct to everybody? People also say to ask a manager or a sous chef to help us at the buffet, but, that is riskier. I can't imagine telling an 11 year old he can't eat at the buffet. For him, that will probably be half the fun of the cruise! Bring plenty of medication, Benadryl and epipens, if he uses them. Any other pointers or advice? TIA
I have taken my 6 year old grandson who has severe peanut allergies on three cruises. I always email www.special_needs@rccl.com to let them know ahead of time about the allergy. (this is Royal Carribean- I don't know what line you are cruising but they will all have a special dietary needs department to send the info). On the first night, the maitre'd always comes up and meets with me along with out waiter to go over the menu and to assure me that everything will be cooked separately for my grandson and will be safe. I have never had a problem although I always carry the Epipens with me just in case. They are very used to catering to people with food allergies with the thousands of people that they serve each day as you may imagine. Have a great time. BTW also in Adventure Ocean, I always let them know when i initially take my grandson that he has peanut allergies and that also has never been a problem and they don't serve anything with nuts in it at all.
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  #4  
Old March 20th, 2013, 12:47 PM
2CuteKiddies 2CuteKiddies is offline
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On our last cruise, they hung up a sign in Adventure Ocean asking other parents to make sure their kids were clean before coming in because of some kids with peanut allergies. Registration is on enbarkation day and they ask about allergies, so your friend can notify Adventure Ocean at that time.
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  #5  
Old March 22nd, 2013, 09:41 PM
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marie73 marie73 is offline
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We just got off Allure with our 8 year old DD who has a peanut allergy. One thing that surprised me was that AO staff are not allowed to administer an epipen (at school and daycare our kids' teachers are trained to do so). At 11, your friends son would probably be ok to do it himself if necessary, but since our DD is younger and recently diagnosed, I was not confident she would be able to do so, especially if she was panicking due to a reaction... That said, they were great about posting signs in the kids club and being very careful at mealtime in the Windjammer - i.e. they only had food that was specially prepared for the AO kids, and they didn't have free access to the buffet.
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  #6  
Old March 23rd, 2013, 08:57 PM
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maureencruiser maureencruiser is offline
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Thanks for all the replies!
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  #7  
Old March 24th, 2013, 09:58 PM
cruisingfor5 cruisingfor5 is offline
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Our son also has a peanut allergy and we have already been in contact with RCL about his allergy. On our last cruise on CCL the buffet was not very friendly for peanut allergy since there was a huge tub of peanut butter open with kids scooping it out them selves. It was all over the place around that area. All the handles had it on them. It was a bit of a mess. My son had limited choices during breakfast and we always went with him. It may have just been that particular cruise. Our cruise PCL wasn't like that as they had peanut butter in packages not in a big tub. This will be our first time RCCL. Just scope it out first and in the MDR let your waiter know the first night. They may already know about it and they are really good about making sure the food is ok. Hope you have a great cruise!
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  #8  
Old April 6th, 2013, 01:37 AM
cantw8togo cantw8togo is offline
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What you have written sounds about right. If they do want to try the buffet, they can request a serving from the kitchen before the dish is brought out so that there is less chance of cross contamination, but it is still not foolproof as there is a chance that nuts may have been used in the kitchen. The other option is the food stations where they make the food to order, but the public can't handle the serving utensils such as the pizza or omlette stations. The safest option is the MDR where special order meals are prepared in a separate kitchen that is disinfected between orders, but your friend (the mom) will have a sense of how much she can trust the buffet and what is best for her son.

We sailed on the Jewel OTS just over a year ago and my impression was that RCI has improved in dealing with food allergies over our first experience on Indy several years before.

Have a great time on your trip!
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  #9  
Old April 6th, 2013, 01:51 AM
SadieN SadieN is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cruisingfor5 View Post
Our son also has a peanut allergy and we have already been in contact with RCL about his allergy. On our last cruise on CCL the buffet was not very friendly for peanut allergy since there was a huge tub of peanut butter open with kids scooping it out them selves. It was all over the place around that area. All the handles had it on them. It was a bit of a mess. My son had limited choices during breakfast and we always went with him. It may have just been that particular cruise. Our cruise PCL wasn't like that as they had peanut butter in packages not in a big tub. This will be our first time RCCL. Just scope it out first and in the MDR let your waiter know the first night. They may already know about it and they are really good about making sure the food is ok. Hope you have a great cruise!
Sounds like a one-off experience, depends on the group onboard. DD has peanut and treenut allergies. Last cruise on Carnival we didn't see the PB tub.

**
Also be careful if there is any sort of Asain food station. Some sauces have peanuts or other legumes. Xanthan Gum is from legumes and DD was allergic to that for a time.

We eat in port and have made up food translation cards saying what she cannot eat. These can also be ordered online.
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  #10  
Old April 6th, 2013, 08:20 AM
Robinhill Robinhill is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SadieN View Post
Sounds like a one-off experience, depends on the group onboard. DD has peanut and treenut allergies. Last cruise on Carnival we didn't see the PB tub.

**
Also be careful if there is any sort of Asain food station. Some sauces have peanuts or other legumes. Xanthan Gum is from legumes and DD was allergic to that for a time.

We eat in port and have made up food translation cards saying what she cannot eat. These can also be ordered online.
I have taken my 6 year old grandson on 3 cruises and we eat breakfast and lunch in the windjammer all of the time. He has severe peanut allergies. I wipe off the table where we are sitting first and ask after walking through and him telling me what he would like, I then go myself up to the stations and get the safe choices for him. I do not get desserts there because there is frequently something that has peanut butter in it and i really am concerned about the serving utensils being switched around. i have never had a problem there or in the main dining room where they do prepare his food separately always. To tell you the truth I have always been more concerned about the plane ride and I put him on the inside at the window seat after wiping down the tray and arm rests and covering the seat with a thin small blanket. I also tell the people in front, in back and on the side of us that he has severe peanut allergies in the hopes that they will not eat peanuts or foods with nuts in them. They have always been kind.
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  #11  
Old April 6th, 2013, 09:42 AM
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xcell xcell is offline
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both daughters have PA and carry epi pens with them. do as most have posted, inform, inform and inform...

not sure with RCCL - have to ask next time - but when on disney, they had peanut free snacks (which were really yummy) for the kids, just had to ask. I wish there was more options for PA kids...regular cookies are besides cookies/desert with peanuts, tongs are not cleaned between, so they stay away from those things. MDR desert isusually vanilla ice cream (in hopes the dont cross contaminate the scoop).

i think most of the peanut butter at breakfast are in those small disposable packets...never seen a tub

for AO - i dont recall snacks being given but the concern would be when they take them for lunch

side note: if you are flying - you can also inform the airline that they have PA but most airlines dont serve snacks with peanuts any more...
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  #12  
Old April 6th, 2013, 12:10 PM
Robinhill Robinhill is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xcell View Post
both daughters have PA and carry epi pens with them. do as most have posted, inform, inform and inform...

not sure with RCCL - have to ask next time - but when on disney, they had peanut free snacks (which were really yummy) for the kids, just had to ask. I wish there was more options for PA kids...regular cookies are besides cookies/desert with peanuts, tongs are not cleaned between, so they stay away from those things. MDR desert isusually vanilla ice cream (in hopes the dont cross contaminate the scoop).

i think most of the peanut butter at breakfast are in those small disposable packets...never seen a tub

for AO - i dont recall snacks being given but the concern would be when they take them for lunch

side note: if you are flying - you can also inform the airline that they have PA but most airlines dont serve snacks with peanuts any more...
Adventure ocean told me they do not give snacks because of that-cross contamination in the plants that process many of the snacks. I always remind them in the MDR to use a clean scoop in the ice cream for him. In reference to airlines- they still give snack mixes with nuts in them. I have been offered them. Also you have no control over what snacks people bring on themselves to enjoy so I just let the people around us know in a courteous way and they have always been great about it.
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  #13  
Old April 7th, 2013, 11:53 PM
nothriver nothriver is offline
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Please be cautious that the person who last sat in your plane seat or in your cruise cabin may have eaten peanut based foods in these areas. Since I've gotten to know many families with peanut allergies and we no longer take peanut based snacks so as not to contaminate public areas but I think of peanut butter weilding toddlers in public areas... yikes.
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