Being invited to a wedding often means some good old-fashioned fun, complete with tons of dancing and food. But for those with a severe food allergy, going to a wedding can be a nerve-wracking or even scary experience. From navigating the cocktail hour to choosing the right meal to eat at the dinner reception, it can be a little overwhelming. Having a severe food allergy is a lot different than having a dietary preference. Those with a food allergy can be in a life-threatening situation if they’re not careful. But not all is lost! If you have a severe food allergy, you can still enjoy yourself and have your palate satiated on the big day. If you’re a guest who has a severe allergy, here are some tips to help you have a safe and amazing time at the upcoming wedding.

Indicate your allergy in the RSVP card

Let the bride and groom know about your allergy when responding to the RSVP card. It’s best that everyone knows your situation as early as possible. When it comes to the dinner menu, obviously pick the food preference that best suits your allergy, but if you’re concerned with hidden ingredients (like in sauces) then it’s important to be upfront and ask if there could be another alternative made for you.

Email everyone who needs to know

It’s key to be as proactive as possible. Ask the bride and groom if you could email (or call) the wedding planner and/or the catering company yourself so that you can properly detail your allergy and provide them with the types of food you can and cannot eat. Be prudent and inquire about all the courses, from the appetizers to the charcuterie board to the dessert and everything in between. Depending on the severity of your food allergies, it might also be a good idea to let everyone know (including the betrothed couple) that you’re comfortable with bringing your own food if necessary. After all, the big day is about supporting the bride and groom- not about stressing over your allergies.

Always bring some snacks

Knowing that you may not be able to eat everything, it’s a good idea to have some snacks on hand that you can keep in your purse or small bag just in case you get peckish and there’s nothing suitable at that time for you to eat. Don’t feel silly — you’re doing yourself a huge favour by bringing them (P.S. it’s also a sweet idea to bring along some extra snacks to share with those who have similar allergies – they might have forgotten to be so proactive and will likely be appreciative).

Severe food allergy? Here’s what you should know when attending that upcoming wedding!

Try not to stress too much

While it’s certainly understandable for you to be so concerned about your food allergy, remember that weddings are supposed to be fun! So don’t spend a lot of time stressing over your food allergies. Organize a game plan about how to handle them, talk to the necessary people, and then try to relax! Work with what you can, and then let loose and have a great time at the wedding. With a little planning and preparation, you’re sure to have a safe and awesome time at the celebration with your loved ones.