Thursday, 20 June 2019

How to Travel As A Vegan

how to travel as a vegan
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As easy as it is nowadays to eat vegan in the UK, because we are spoilt for choice in restaurants and supermarkets, this isn't always the case in other countries. So if you are vegan and about to go on your summer holiday you may be getting the cold sweats thinking about how you're going to find vegan food abroad.

No-one wants their holiday to be ruined because they are always hangry, or worse you don't want to be in a position where you become unwell because you aren't eating right.

Vegan food at the airport

Your holiday officially starts at the airport, you're checked in, your luggage is off your hands and now is the time to do some shopping and get some food before your flight. So what exactly do you get? On your outbound flight from the UK I'm sure you will have lots of options, I've eaten vegan sandwiches and wraps from places like Starbucks and Pret, and had sit down meals in Leon. But if you're on your return flight and the options in your destination airport are limited then it all comes down to planning ahead.

Happy Cow App

The happy cow app is a community based app that tells you all of the vegan and vegetarian restaurants/cafe's in your location. It's constantly being updated by the community of people who use it, with information on dishes you can find, reviews and photos. If you find a hidden gem whilst travelling that isn't on Happy Cow, you are able to add the information to the app.

Fly with your own milk or creamer

If you are travelling somewhere quite remote, finding soya milk or any plant milk might be tricky. Maybe you'll be arriving in the early hours of the morning and going straight to bed so will want a little bit of milk to tide you over before you have a chance to hit the local shops to find some, if so buying a 250ml carton or two to throw in your case is probably a good idea. You can also buy 250ml cartons of vanilla soy milk which are good for coffee or to have on cereal, you can pick up a multi pack of 15 cartons from Amazon for around £7

Pack snacks

Be sure to pack some of your favourite vegan snacks in your case, Cliff bars, nuts, Nakd bars, Belvita biscuits etc are all good choices. This way you know you always have something to snack on or items to bulk out a sparse vegan meal. For instance, taking walnuts in a little container means you can break them into a salad as a good source of protein and fat, or have a belvita biscuit along with some fruit from the buffet for breakfast.

Check Tripadvisor

Tripadvisor is so helpful when going abroad, you can check out local restaurants to see if they have vegan options and read reviews and people will often post photos of the food so you can see if it looks nice. I've noticed that many restaurants abroad don't have websites, in the UK we are lucky in that most places even if they are small still usually have a website that shows their menu so it's easy to check that before going for a meal. If the restaurant you are planning to go to on holiday doesn't have a website often people will have posted a photo of the menu on tripadvisor which is so handy. Pay it forward by taking your own pics of your vegan meals and letting others know what was available.

travelling as a vegan

Notify you hotel in advance

Most hotels are happy to accommodate if they know in advance, so be sure to let your hotel or rep know you are vegan and ask if they will have vegan milk available at breakfast and if ingredients are clearly marked at the buffet. When I was staying in Edinburgh I asked at the hotel reception if they had soy milk and they happily brought a jug up to my room so I could make tea. If you don't ask, you don't get, and you also don't help with the change. If places know there is a call for more vegan items then hopefully they will make the effort. If you don't say anything then they don't know!

Take Tupperwear

Take your own containers and tupperwear so you can make something in your hotel room and take it with you if you are going out on an excursion or somewhere remote and are worried about the availability of vegan food. Planning ahead takes the stress out of the situation, no one wants to leave it to chance and end up being hungry or being given a plate of cucumber as their meal. Try getting yourself some collapsible containers to save some space in your suitcase, like these ones from Amazon.

Head to local health food stores

Check on the internet to see if there are any health food stores local to where you are going. Health food stores will often have lots of vegan products for you to try, I did this in South West France when I was visiting. We found a local health food store and I managed to pick up some amazing vegan cream cheese and yogurt. 

Google Translate

Learn how to say vegan in the language of your destination, you can use google translate to do this along with sayings like no cheese/butter/milk/dairy please. If you don't feel confident in learning to say it you could always just bring it up on your phone to show your waiting staff.

Email tourism board

Email the local tourism board for where you are visiting and ask for recommendations, they will usually have good insider knowledge of the best places for you to visit that

Hopefully these tips have given you some ideas for the next time you travel. Depending on the country you are visiting it could be easy or slightly more difficult to find vegan food, so preparation really is the key to making sure you don't go hungry.

Happy Travels!


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