A Blogger’s Guide: Traveling Vegan

If you know my blog, you know how much I love to travel. Experiencing new cultures and new places is endlessly exciting to me. However, being a vegan who can’t eat gluten and tries her best to not touch processed foods.. traveling can seem unimaginable. Yet, here I am. For all my new vegan buddies and travel enthusiasts, here is my guide to traveling while vegan.

 

Starting off with the plane, car or any mode of transportation where you WILL need snacks. A lot of airport foot courts are rarely vegan friendly, so I tend to bring the essentials in my carry on.

Food to bring:
– Rice cakes
– Individual packs of nut-butter (or one large closable tube of nut-butter)
– Dried fruit (I like dry mango or bananas)
– McDougal’s soups (or any vegan “just add water” type of soup)
– Lärabars (or any vegan power bar)

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2. If you’re lucky the hotel you book will either be very accommodating with meals or be mostly vegan. While in Crete, Greece the hotel was quite accommodating for dinners, but their continental breakfast let me down a little. Here is how to survive meals at your hotel:

Breakfast:
A lot of places will hold a continental breakfast, here is my usual:
– Bananas
– Any of the fresh fruit
– Corn flakes
– Glass of water

I know this is breakfast is a little sad, but here are some things you can pack if you don’t want to count on the hotel for food:
– Instant oatmeal
– Dry fruit
– Nuts

Dinner:
Hopefully the hotel you stay at will have vegan options, but if they don’t here are a few easy things you can ask for:
– Roasted veggies in oil (no butter)
– Pasta and sauce
– Beans and rice (depends where in the world you are, but ask for corn tortillas if possible)

NOTE: Each country will be different, so do some research prior to cultural foods and see what can be made vegan easily.

Tip: get creative and ask to speak to the chef! Most chefs will be willing to accommodate to allergies or dietary restrictions.

Here are some things you can pack if you don’t want to count on the hotel for dinner:
– McDougal’s soups (or any vegan “just add water” type of soup)
– Minute rice (just make sure your room comes with a microwave. Buy a can of beans and some greens at a local market if possible so you aren’t just eating rice!)

 

3. Being out and about in an area that isn’t too vegan friendly can be hard, especially when you need some sort of snack.

What to pack in your day bag / purse:
– Power bars (as said before I love Lärabars)
– Fruit (if accessible fresh, if not pack some dried)
– Nuts

Going to lunch or dinner while exploring can also be a challenge. The same principals apply while dining at a restaurant as they did at the hotel. Don’t be afraid to ask for modifications to meals or for something completely off the menu!

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4. Shopping for food in foreign countries can be especially hard when you don’t speak the language. Not to mention, if you’re vegan and can’t count on reading the ingredients. When I was in Greece we went food shopping a few times, and I found a few ways to check if ingredients were vegan.

Tips for food shopping:

– Look up non-vegan products (such as “milk” or “eggs”) and google translate it. This will give you an idea of what to look out for.
– Research the brands real quick. You have no idea how many times I looked up a brand and wrote “vegan??” LOL.
– You can also ask the staff at the markets, as they should be able to know if the product contains any non-vegan ingredients.

 

5. Guess I should have gone over this one in the beginning, but.. plane travel can be a struggle for vegans. Much of my carry on food I discussed above also works as a quick dinner. Hopefully the airline you choose gives you a vegan option though! Thankfully, many airlines are becoming more accommodating to a plant-based diet.

Tips for flying while vegan:
– Research the airline and where in the world you’re going. I’ve heard some countries in Asia have airlines with a vegetarian option that is almost always vegan due to cultural diet. While I was traveling to Greece I took a German airline that provided us with amazing vegan options! Just remember to request the vegan meal if required.
– If you’re traveling with a U.S. airline many offer meals as well as snack boxes. In my experience there will be snack boxes that are mostly vegan, yet just have cheese crackers in a little bag included. I usually order the most vegan one and give the contents I do not want to another passenger.

 

Overall, each place you travel to will be different. Do a little research on food and culture before you go so you can be better prepared for what to ask for at restaurants and what to bring along with you.

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Paris, France
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Santorini, Greece
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Athens, Greece

I hope these tips will help you with being vegan and traveling! If you use these tips let me know! I would love to see where you go in the world!

Instagram: mari.stamos
Twitter: MarianneStamos

 

Enjoy your trip!

— Marianne

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