I was travellingÂ on my first gluten free flightÂ less than aÂ week after being diagnosed. It was a KLM flight from Glasgow to Chicago with a change of planeÂ in Amsterdam. A couple of days before the flight my boyfriend hadÂ called the airline to try to change my meal to gluten free.Â Our flight had been advertised as an NWA flight but operated by KLM. TheÂ woman on the other end of the phone was very nice and understandingÂ of my situation, saying that herÂ own brotherÂ was a Coeliac and ‘making sure I getÂ a gluten free meal when I travelÂ is very important.’ After checking ourÂ booking, she returned withÂ the news that as it was KLM who were operating our flight,Â they don’t actually provide gluten free meals and would I like a fruit plate?Â Admittedly I do love myÂ fruit but seriously, this is all they could offer meÂ on an 8 hour trans-atlanticÂ flight?Â I of courseÂ said I would take the fruit plateÂ as the prospect of sitting with nothing whilst everyone wasÂ munching on their dinnerÂ didn’t sound like fun to me. Also,Â the last 5 or 6Â flights I’d takenÂ had been withÂ cheap airlines who didn’t provide food and I was determined that if I was paying for something to eat on thisÂ flightÂ thenÂ I would get it!
I came well prepared for bothÂ flights to and from the States with seed bars, bananas, rice cakes and other gluten free snacksÂ as I didn’t want to have to rely on my fruit plate. It turned out to be an ok plate of fruit, more so on the return flight where they had invested in a more interesting variety but if I hadn’t brought my ownÂ nibbles I wouldÂ have been starving! Personally, I am a huge fan of fruit anyway but any fussy or hungry Coeliac probably wouldn’t have been veryÂ impressed by KLM’s ‘special meal’.