Can you believe Labor Day weekend is already here? Though summer isn’t officially over for a few more weeks, the beginning of September usually has me thinking about packing up the beach gear and settling in for fall. As the warm days begin to dwindle, many folks, myself included, use the holiday weekend to take one last mini-getaway with family and friends. Whether you skip town by way of plane, train, or automobile, food will inevitably be involved during your travels. And as a vegan, you have to plan ahead!
When you first adopt a vegan meal plan, it takes a little while to get adjusted. Even with Well Vegan supplying you with all of the tools you need to make the right eating choices for a plant-based diet, things can get tricky when you’re on the road or at the airport for an extended period of time. Though there are vegan fast food options out there, relying solely on Taco Bell and Wendy’s for your daily sustenance isn’t advisable! But, fear not. With a little bit of planning, it’s entirely possible to eat vegan while traveling. Here’s how:
Pack plenty of snacks for the car or plane
Unfortunately, there aren’t too many vegan options at your typical highway rest stop or airport terminal. That’s why I recommend packing plenty of snacks to keep you happy and satisfied until the next opportunity for a vegan meal presents itself. Some of my favorite travel snacks include vegan protein bars, kale chips, almonds, peanut butter, veggie sticks, pita bread, and hummus. If you’re traveling by plane, many airports now have free filtered water stations, so be sure to bring an empty water bottle to fill up!
Look up vegan-friendly restaurants on the Happy Cow website
When you’re traveling to a place you’ve never been before, how are you supposed to know where to find the best vegan-friendly restaurants in town? Personally, I’ve found that the Happy Cow website has the most comprehensive list of vegan-friendly restaurants worldwide. Do a quick search in the area where you’re staying and print a list of your options at home before you hit the road. Or, download the Happy Cow mobile app to choose a restaurant on the fly.
Call your hotel and ask a few questions
If you’re staying at a hotel this weekend, I recommend calling the front desk before you arrive and inquiring about a few things. First, ask if your room has a mini fridge, or if you can rent one for the duration of your stay. A mini fridge is the perfect size for storing vegan essentials like almond milk, veggies, and hummus. Also, if the hotel offers a complimentary breakfast, be sure to ask about vegan options. Most hotels will have oatmeal and fruit you can make with almond milk, and bagels you can top with peanut butter and bananas.
Connect with local vegans
Before you leave for your trip, reach out to your social networks on Facebook and Twitter to see if any of your friends have recommendations for farmers markets or vegan-friendly restaurants. You can also try doing a Google search for “vegan [city name]” to see if you can connect with a local vegan food blogger. Reddit is also a great tool for reaching out to locals and asking questions about the area. Get creative! No one knows your vacation destination better than the folks who live there full time.
As for me, I’m flying to Chicago and taking a road trip to Arkansas this Labor Day weekend. I don’t anticipate there will be many vegan-friendly restaurants along the way, but with the proper planning and packing I know I’ll be able to stick to my vegan meal plan while traveling. I’m confident you can, too!