Travel can be stressful when you are on a very strict diet, make it easy on yourself and plan.
Bring snacks for the plane. This can be fruit, rice crackers or a sandwich, if it’s a long flight. Eat a good meal before you go to the airport. If you are going on a car trip, you can pack a cooler. Bring rice, beans, pre-made burritos, pre-made sandwiches, cut up veggies, salsa, brown rice crackers, steamed vegetables, and your favorite no oil dressing. An easy dressing is Whole Foods low-fat hummus and the juice of one big lemon blended together. Experiment and find a no oil dressing that you like. It is essential. You can bring this into a restaurant when you are on the road and order a salad.
1. If you are staying in a condo with a kitchen, you are in luck. You can go to a grocery store and do your thing.
2. If you are staying at a hotel, call ahead and request a mini-fridge for your room.
Marriott Hotels usually have a fridge in the room.
Pacific brand Oat milk, original (or milk substitute of your choice)
Ezekiel Cereal or cereal of your choice
Hardy fruit such as apples, grapefruit, oranges
Cut up veggies such as carrots and peppers
Brown rice crackers
Low-fat or fat-free hummus (I buy Roots oil-free hummus at Whole Foods)
Also pack a bowl (you can bring a Tupperware container shaped like a bowl instead of an actual bowl), a spoon, and a knife if you are bringing grapefruit. As you may imagine, you cannot take oat milk or a knife in your carry-on luggage. If you are bringing a carry-on, obviously ditch the knife and you will have to get some kind of organic soy milk at your hotel or store.
Get an insulated lunch bag and ice packs. Put everything in the bag and pack that into your suitcase. When you get to the hotel put the oat milk (does not have to be refrigerated before opening), veggies and hummus in the fridge.
For breakfast eat plain oatmeal from the hotel restaurant or your own cereal. You can put a little fruit (either from hotel or fruit you have brought), cinnamon and oat milk in the oatmeal. It’s delicious and filling.
3. If you are traveling for work, you may be at a convention center where they serve boxed lunches. There will typically be a vegetarian option, but it is never anything you can actually eat. It is usually a grilled vegetable sandwich (you don’t want oil), chips (oil), pasta salad (oil)… you get it.
This is where you can pull out an apple, rice crackers, hummus and veggies. That will hold you over until you get to your room and then you can eat a bowl of cereal if you are still hungry. It’s not ideal, but it is the best you may be able to do.
4. This also works if you are out and about traveling, say at an amusement park or sight-seeing.
There will be been times when you know the meeting/convention/wedding/reunion will have a plated lunch or dinner. Call ahead to the hotel or venue or email the coordinator and request a vegan meal without oil. They will tell you whether or not they can accommodate you and with whom you should speak at the venue. Follow up. You don’t want to be left without a meal.
5. If you are dining in unfamiliar cities you can use the Open Table app and website. It’s very handy for telling you what restaurants are in the area. They are rated by other diners and you can look at the menus online. You can even filter it by vegan restaurants. If there are some things that you know you can eat with a little modifying, call the restaurant. Try not to call during lunch or dinner rush because they will be too busy to talk to you.