There are a lot of misconceptions about going vegan, but we’re not here to discuss that. We’re here to remind everyone that it’s a lifestyle and not a diet plan that you can cheat on.
Veganism, as a lifestyle, doesn’t end when we travel across oceans. We carry it with us anywhere we go.
So, to help traveling vegans conquer their fear of not being able to fill their tummies with good food during their trips, we’ve come up with six helpful tips on how you can enjoy traveling worry-free.
1. Double-check that your airline is vegan-friendly
For long-haul flights, calling your airline and letting them know in advance that you are a vegan will help ensure you get served what you actually prefer instead of a vegetarian meal that’s completely different from a vegan meal.
However, if you’re traveling by car or long train rides, preparing your own meal is the best way to do it. That way, you get to recycle the container you used for your pre-prepared meals for future use, and you get to have a certified vegan dish as well.
2. Book vegan-friendly hotels and tours
We’ve come to that point where veganism has been widely accepted globally, so finding vegan-friendly hotels and tours is no longer a tough challenge to the lifestyle we’re trying to uphold.
The first thing that you should do is to look for one and book it right away. You can compare prices, but with the limited options that we have especially in some regions, booking the first one you see is already considered a win.
Hotels that are 100% vegan-friendly know exactly the requirements of traveling vegans. From preparing your room with pro-animal materials, down to making sure that your meal plan is certified animal-free.
Being able to sleep in a hotel that respects your lifestyle will give a good night’s sleep, trust me on that.
3. Pack the vegan essentials
When vegans travel abroad, the least that you should expect when you shop for necessities at a local store are products that conform to our life principle, because we might get disappointed if we expect much.
But then again, that should be the least of your worries. Picking the best luggage brands might even be a bigger challenge for you since there are a lot of fancy and tempting options in the market right now.
Packing our vegan essentials like shampoo, conditioners, soap and even makeups in our carry on will save us that trip to the nearest vegan store, which in some places might be like finding a needle in a haystack.
While there may be general supermarkets and health stores that offer vegan products, it’s best to be prepared and bring your own pack instead.
4. Research where local vegans dine
At the destination of your choice, you might get help finding vegan restaurants with the help of locals. Aside from joining social groups online, there’s an app called the Happy Cow where you can find a great database of vegan spots worldwide.
If it isn’t enough for you, you can trust travel blogger and lifestyle coach Kristin Lajeunesse for tips and recommendations.
5. Make substitutions
At some point, you will have no other choice but to dine in a non-vegan restaurant. In that case, you would need to adjust and make a special request.
You can check their menu and then kindly ask the person in charge to remove some of the ingredients included in the dish while explaining that you are a vegan.
Most kitchen staff would gladly accommodate your request so there’s nothing to be shy about.
6. Connect with the local vegan community
Social groups on Facebook and on other digital platforms are helpful when it comes to improving the way you live. Being a part of a community makes you feel more empowered to carry on the journey.
The best way for a vegan to travel is to use that social group to connect with the local vegan community. You’d be happy to discover places that only these locals know about.
Reddit’s vegan community has meet-ups across the globe so you won’t have a hard time fitting in in a foreign city.
In actuality, vegan traveling is not a tough nut to crack as long as you know how to go about it. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll never have to be guilty over one mistake ever again.