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How good is Celebrity about food allergies?

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I don't have traditional food allergies, but I have a rare disease (Eosinophillic Esophagitis) which is basically an intolerance that results in inflammation of my esophagus if I eat a trigger food over a period of time. I've been treating it by eliminating the top 8 triggers (Gluten, Dairy, Eggs, Fish, Shellfish, Soy, Nuts, Tree Nuts) for the last 9 months. I've introduced most of them back with success and I'm healing. However, I'm not trialing Dairy and Gluten yet, and won't be by the time I cruise in June. I would like to, if possible, eat as little or NONE of these two items as possible. Again, if I do, it won't be the end of the world (I don't get anaphylaxis reactions), but I want to keep the diet going through the cruise.

 

I plan to pack some snacks with me (boxed items), but I also still want to be able to eat on the ship.

 

How accommodating are they if I want to avoid dairy and/or gluten?

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I find them very good for assisting you around these restrictions.

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I find them very good for assisting you around these restrictions.

 

Very good, we had someone in my recent dialing on our group who had several food issues, sounds like it is the same laundry list as you...

 

Each night in MDR, as they served the dessert course, they would bring the next nights menu for him to review and discuss options and his likes and the chef would then tailor those items he could to his needs.

 

Also lots of gluten free options including buffet pizza and breakfast breads, though many are on request. I think someone even notes scones were available. The MDR menu also notes gluten free when it applies.

 

You can contact them ahead of time (find rate Special Assistance contact particulars) though many seem to note it really hasn't been tended to in advance - being hit and miss much like telling an airline you ned a special meal and sometimes you get it others not. Just arrive and discuss with your waiter the first night or restaurant staff as soon as you board.

 

Here's a link to a recent thread with some good information.

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2041662

Edited by cle-guy

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I am sensitive to nuts (not allergic) so I look for the signs in the buffet. Last year on the Reflection, I got a dish from the section where they prepare pasta. It was chinese day, so I was getting some type of Lo-Mien noodles. It tasted like it had sesame oil and went back and asked. I was told it did have sesame oil and the head waiter immediately put up a sign for nuts. Same thing happened over in the dessert section, no sign for cookies/brownies with nuts. Just ask if you are unsure, they are very helpful in finding out what ingredients are.

 

I have this issue on all cruise ships - not just celebrity.

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BFF has Celiac Disease, and DH has Crohns with multiple triggers, including many of the ones you mention. We have all travelled on Celebrity together with no issues. Although there are now gluten-free identified items right on the MDR menu, it's best to plan ahead by contacting Special Needs, who will arrange with the ship to ensure some items you may need will be on board. Then, ensure you identify yourself to the Maitre d' once on board, who will help to pre-order/coordinate meals for you a day ahead, as they can often modify meals already on the menu to meet your needs. We typically take set-time dining in the MDR as the waiters get to know the special needs of our group, and look out for potential issues such as cross contamination.

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Speaking for myself...Celebrity staff was excellent checking for me.....many many cruises with them and not once did I have a problem. I do check before ordering the first night and they have always remember going forward in the dining room. The buffet I know what could possibly be a problem and just don't touch it. Probably most would be fine but there is always plenty of other options I know are okay.

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I've been with others who have had problems on Celebrity and all times it was in the specialty restuarants.

 

Once we went to Silk Harvest on Equinox which serves Asian food. One in our party has bad reactions to MSG which is somewhat common in Asian food. We ended up talking to the waiter then the Maitre d' about it and they assured us our food would be MSG free. The chef even came out and showed us cans of broth they used which indicaed MSG free on the cans and assured us the food would be MSG free. The person with the issue had a migraine typical of their MSG reaction coming on before we left the dining room and they very rarely get such migraines otherwise.

 

Another time we were in Qsine with someone with Celiac (Gluten free) and despite the staff being aware of this he was frequently presented with foods that he knew would have gluten and despite being careful they had a gluten reaction that night. The maître d' had promised that they would let him know with each small dish brought to the table if it was gluten free or not. This was seldom done and I suspect that a couple times when he asked the server bringing the dish they just winged it rather than speaking from real knowledge of the preparation and ingredients that is a must for dealing with food allergies.

 

I think the issue at Qsine, and perhaps at Silk Harvest as well, was the large number of staff who were bringing out small plates of food to share throughout the meal. I think that the managers and main waiters are very careful about food allergies but that some of the less experienced staff in the specialty restaurant's and buffet are not. In those venues where you are likely to be served by different servers it is important to get your information from a manager or assistant manager rather than just asking the person presenting the dish or spooning out the food at the buffet. I think it is less of an issue in the MDR where your staff is more stable and possibly better trained on these issues than in the areas where you are serviced by a larger number of employees working the area. You can always find the managers and assistant managers in these venues and they are very service oriented and well trained in food allergies.

Edited by Lsimon

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I have severe food allergies & a tablemate on our Equinox cruise was gluten free. Erkan, the marvelous maître d, ensured that we had menus for the following night to select our dinners. He also checked both of our dinners to ensure that we weren't getting an item that would make us ill. Both of us had contacted the restaurant manager prior to sailing & listed it with our TA & Celebrity. Erkan (maître d) already had our names & allergies/intolerances when we first met with him. I really wanted to take him home...

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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I will be on Equinox Ina few weeks, after sailing on her on February. I had previously sailed on Reflection last winter, before booking the upcoming June Equinox cruise. Since we'll be traveling with our DD who has many allergies, I asked a lot of questions before booking. I've been assured that we'll be OK, and even already been in contact with the restaurant manager on Equinox ahead of the time. We'll speak with the MDR when we first board, but don't expect issues.

 

Since DD is allergic to soy and rice, we will not be trying Silk Harvest/Qsine.

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I don't have traditional food allergies, but I have a rare disease (Eosinophillic Esophagitis) which is basically an intolerance that results in inflammation of my esophagus if I eat a trigger food over a period of time. I've been treating it by eliminating the top 8 triggers (Gluten, Dairy, Eggs, Fish, Shellfish, Soy, Nuts, Tree Nuts) for the last 9 months. I've introduced most of them back with success and I'm healing. However, I'm not trialing Dairy and Gluten yet, and won't be by the time I cruise in June. I would like to, if possible, eat as little or NONE of these two items as possible. Again, if I do, it won't be the end of the world (I don't get anaphylaxis reactions), but I want to keep the diet going through the cruise.

 

I plan to pack some snacks with me (boxed items), but I also still want to be able to eat on the ship.

 

How accommodating are they if I want to avoid dairy and/or gluten?

 

DW and I are both gluten free and dairy free for the most part. We had 10 days aboard the Solstice and not once had a problem. Let the head waiter and servers know and they will bend over backwards for you.

 

The breads, cookies/pastries, GF crepes at Bistro on 5, pizza and pasta at the Ocean View were all good. Soy lattes were fine at cafe al bacio.

 

Enjoy your cruise!

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mDR waiters were excellent at helping me avoid nuts. Buffet was a disaster. Many items did not have signs. i only ate items that I could identify as nut free. I avoided eating anything that was unidentified. Many items ob the buffet did not have signs. Mystery food is to be avoided by anyone with food allergies.

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Last time I sailed with them was the first time I ever had an issue! Just be careful, I have spice and seasoning allergies, picked up a bagel which I thought was plain, and it was just the opposite. I had no issues in the speciality restaurants, but avoided the barbecue, and Harvest. At the buffet ask to speak to the chef. For the section... Write down your specific allergies on index cards, and use them as needed! 32 cruises various lines and I am still alive :)

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Celebrity is very good with dealing with food allergies and totally understands the cross contamination issues. :)

LuLu

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My recent experiences on the Infinity are that Celebritiy's handling of the gluten free diet is not as good as it once was. This may be that new people are not as well trained as they once were or so many are not following the diet for medical reasons that they have become lax.

 

The marked menu is nice if there is still a gluten free choice available each evening and the chef follows the recipe. Waffles, pizza, cookies made onboard are the worst I have tasted anywhere in over 10 years, made with pure rice flour. It helps to understand recipes and ask questions of anything that looks suspcious. I found they did not totally understand the more subtle items with gluten such as oatmeal and cereals with malt.

 

Nearly all gluten free desserts are dairy based, I had very little succcess with anything that was not other than sorbet. Take your snacks, cereals, etc.

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It always confuses me when people post that the Maitre'D was really helpful with their dietary requirements because when we were on Infinity he just told us to talk to our waiters as it wasn't his problem.

Either way, we did speak to our waiters and luckily my mum's only lactose intolerant which wasn't a problem, as anything that includes lactose is marked on the menu. Our waiter also sorted out lactose-free desserts for her every night, some were ok, some were bad but others she had were amazing :) Wasn't so much a problem at the buffets as she didn't really struggle to find anything to eat there.

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Absolutely awful at accommodating allergies. Just got off Celebrity Sillohuette and I had the blandest food ever. They make little effort. I had to beg to have herbs or spices added to my dish. We had the specialty restaurant package so ate at 4 of their restaurants and that didn’t make a difference. Not once did a chef speak to me at these restaurants. I did have a wonderful Indian chef at the main buffet prepare chicken for me that was seasoned. In their main dinner restaurant I was actually served one of my allergens. Luckily I was suspicious so asked before putting it in my mouth.

 

I do have to say that the MaitreD at the main restaurant really tried but the chefs were not accommodating or trained.

 

BTW if you have a sugar allergy don’t trust the labeling. no sugar added does not mean the item doesn’t have sugar. They had lunch meals labeled as no sugar added which is completely bogus so luckily we learned not to trust their labeling early.

 

No more celebrity for us. We will stick with Disney where we had awesome meals, spoke with chefs and felt safe the entire trip.

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You drug up a 4 year old thread to complain?

 

Yup, a one post wonder!

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They instituted the Dine Aware program for people with food allergies and they are very good. My daughter has severe gluten sensitivity and has never had an issue with Celebrity ships. They are especially careful about avoiding cross contamination which iOS the downfall of many people with various food allergies. You should have no worries.

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Absolutely awful at accommodating allergies. Just got off Celebrity Sillohuette and I had the blandest food ever. They make little effort. I had to beg to have herbs or spices added to my dish. We had the specialty restaurant package so ate at 4 of their restaurants and that didn’t make a difference. Not once did a chef speak to me at these restaurants. I did have a wonderful Indian chef at the main buffet prepare chicken for me that was seasoned. In their main dinner restaurant I was actually served one of my allergens. Luckily I was suspicious so asked before putting it in my mouth.

 

I do have to say that the MaitreD at the main restaurant really tried but the chefs were not accommodating or trained.

 

BTW if you have a sugar allergy don’t trust the labeling. no sugar added does not mean the item doesn’t have sugar. They had lunch meals labeled as no sugar added which is completely bogus so luckily we learned not to trust their labeling early.

 

No more celebrity for us. We will stick with Disney where we had awesome meals, spoke with chefs and felt safe the entire trip.

 

A rarity, IME... 'no sugar added' does not mean there is no sugar in the item, just that no sugar was added.

 

 

Always speak with chefs or Maitre d's when dining for my and others food preferences...

 

Maybe it is the mouse you need to be with so you feel as if your needs are properly taken care of.

 

Sorry you believe the food and culinary staff was not to your standards...

 

bon voyage

 

btw - Welcome to CC and your first post...

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Strange - we were on Silhouette in December with my daughter (her 3rd cruise with Celebrity) and they handled her allergies quite well.

 

DD is allergic to soy, rice, nuts (both peanuts and tree nuts), melon (including eggplant, which is in the melon family), oranges, apples, pears. There might be more, but those are the ones I know about. She is 24 and manages her own now.

 

The waiter wasn't the best - he didn't seem to understand and simply said "No nuts, no nuts" when we questioned a meal. We called over the Asst Matre'D, who went to the kitchen and verified that one meal was safe for her to eat.

 

In the Oceanview, she would find the Asst Matre'D on duty, who would find a chef, who would make her what she wanted.

 

She carries an EpiPen and liquid Benadryl in case of reaction.

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I don't have traditional food allergies, but I have a rare disease (Eosinophillic Esophagitis) which is basically an intolerance that results in inflammation of my esophagus if I eat a trigger food over a period of time. I've been treating it by eliminating the top 8 triggers (Gluten, Dairy, Eggs, Fish, Shellfish, Soy, Nuts, Tree Nuts) for the last 9 months. I've introduced most of them back with success and I'm healing. However, I'm not trialing Dairy and Gluten yet, and won't be by the time I cruise in June. I would like to, if possible, eat as little or NONE of these two items as possible. Again, if I do, it won't be the end of the world (I don't get anaphylaxis reactions), but I want to keep the diet going through the cruise.

 

I plan to pack some snacks with me (boxed items), but I also still want to be able to eat on the ship.

 

How accommodating are they if I want to avoid dairy and/or gluten?

 

 

The staff are usually very good with accommodating special diet needs. HOWEVER, a small percentage of the time a less knowledgeable or disciplined service person can make mistakes. I suggest you pay strict attention (but not fanatical) to your

choice selections.

 

As the other respondents point out, the more that know, the more double checking will be on your side.

 

And don't forget, there can be an error in the vendor supply where it was assumed that the labeling was correct, but may not be.

 

Ask the M'd to assign you to experienced staff. And an extra tip never hurts,

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absolutely wonderful I do not like onions and garlic whatsoever - after the first night's dinner - they brought me the menu for every night thereafter and I chose what I wanted for the next evening

 

The waiters and chefs were extremely accommodating

 

sail on celebrity every time - the free drink package certainly is a bonus too

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Having sailed most of the mainstream lines, in my opinion, Celebrity is the BEST at handling food allergies.

Hello queen. We cancelled our 6/27 trip due to concerns about celebrity being able to feed our DD for 11 nights. She is starting a very restricted diet today, and we couldn't chance it. DW tried contacting the special needs dept., along with several other shoreside contacts. ZIP. No response. We cancelled.

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