Vegan travel has always been a nightmare to many due to lack of cross-cultural information and vegan support group data insufficiency around the world.
When Sowmya from Vegan Tomorrow recently picked up a conversation about vegan travel tips in a Facebook group, the response was amazing. Abishek Ramesh was one of the first few to volunteer to enable his fellow vegans to learn that traveling as a vegan isn’t a nightmare anymore.
We then decided to pose a number of questions on the behalf of vegans to him and here you go to learn what he answered.
When did you go vegan and where did you travel post the transition?
I went completely vegan on Jan 1, 2016 and it was truly a great decision that I am proud of.
Post my hearty transition, I visited a number of countries such as Netherlands, France, Belgium, Germany, Norway, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Panama, Mexico, Sweden, Latvia, Estonia, Russia. I usually go on a 3-4 week trip twice a year and I have never found my travel difficult.
Oh, the list is exhaustive. As you traveled a number of place, how was the vegan community there? What were the challenges you faced?
Well, I should inform that vegan travel was made simpler because of the progressive culture throughout the world. My primary challenge was to read and understand the ingredients since most of them were in local languages. But, I did have many benefits too 😉
Most of the European countries have progressive vegan products that can’t be found in India or USA. And something that motivated me further is the availability of loads of fruits and vegetables in Latin American countries that were visually appealing and appeared to be a heaven to me.
We observe that the global culture is welcoming veganism. Isn’t it?
Of course! Perhaps, there were supermarkets in Europe that had dedicated sections comprising of vegan products. If you know the local language a bit, you can bargain though.
I would also like to add that many restaurants are keen to veganize foods based on request. So, we should never be hesitant to request.
Does that mean we can happily travel without worrying about the availability of local vegan foods?
I would say YES. I usually carry only my passport, phone, personal hygiene items and few clothes. I never worry about the availability as I always do the research of culture, food and ingredients (in local language) before I leave. That makes my vegan travel wonderful!
Do you have any special tip to offer to our readers?
- Never miss to do your research beforehand. It can save your money and add relief.
- Stay in a place that is accessible to necessary amenities.
- Learn the local language for words like no milk, vegan, no meat, etc.
- Use Happycow portal. It is a great resource to guide you on local vegan restaurants.
Have you had any extraordinary vegan food that you would like to share with us?
If at all you hop in at Amsterdam, do not miss the gluten-free space cakes. In addition to food, meet the local vegan community. You can have some extraordinary experiences 🙂
So, what are you waiting for? Pack up and travel!