Allergy-Friendly Study Abroad Guide: Berlin, Germany

Bella is studying abroad in Berlin, Germany while managing peanut and tree nut allergies. She is currently between her undergraduate and graduate years, but studied at Humboldt Universität zu Berlin. You can find her on Spokin @nutfreefun and on Instagram @nutfreeishfun.

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Tell us about you!

Where are you study are you studying abroad?

Berlin, Germany!

How did you choose your study abroad location?

Growing up speaking German and professionally pursuing classical music, I’ve always been enamored with the idea of traveling and living in Germany! When the opportunity presented itself through government scholarships, I couldn’t resist!

Had you been out of the country before studying abroad and did you speak the local language? 

Yes and yes!

Did you plan anything ahead of time?

Yes, I got allergy cards, did extensive research (Spokin, Reddit, blogs, etc.), called restaurants or pubs, and saved emergency numbers.

What are your best tips for studying abroad with food allergies?

Germany (especially Berlin) is incredible with allergies. Nearly all restaurants have allergy keys and are knowledgeable of allergies and contaminants. Truly could not recommend this more.

Did you have any concerns about traveling with food allergies?

Definitely! Whenever traveling, I’m always hyper-aware of allergies and contaminants and worry about entering an emergency situation.

What airline did you fly? How did you handle accommodations and airplane food?

Lufthansa—I have never had an issue with their food, but to be safe, I always bring something I know to be 100% allergen-free. Because passengers may have nuts, I usually wear a mask and bring wipes to clean the seat and buckle.

Where did you live and how were meals handled?

I lived in an apartment and bought my own food at supermarkets or restaurants.

What were your 3 favorite places to eat in Berlin?

Shiso BurgerLove the ebi burger, salmon salad, and lychee mixer! It can get pretty pricey pretty fast, but it’s an amazing and super allergy aware option. Staff is very knowledgeable and the punches of flavor are immaculate.
Weiße Kebap Haus: No nuts and everything is labeled and vegetarian! I‘ve had their halloumi durums and vegan Döner in brot! And super yummy selection of sauces and veggies!
Les Pâtisseries de Sébastien: Incredible! Everything is labeled! The quality is wonderful and the baker is so kind! Definitely try their croissants and baguettes!

Is there any food your study abroad location is known for that you were able to have safely?

Witty’s Currywurst! Personally I like the Currywurst at Humboldt Forum better though.

What other places did you visit during your trip?

I went to Amsterdam, Cologne, Dublin, Munich, and Wiesbaden. I loved eating at Pancakes in Amsterdam, Gasth of Kühle Rast in Austria, and HaldiSpoon in Cologne.

Besides the food, were there any fun experiences or favorite things you did?

Komischer Oper Berlin has super creative stagings of classic operas and modern ones as well! If you’re under 30, you can also enjoy the operas at discounted prices with the citywide ClassicCard.
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