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“Isn’t it hard travelling as a vegan?” is probably up there with “but where do you get your protein?” on the list of commonly asked questions.
The short answer is, no not at all! Eating out as a vegan while travelling is easier than ever, but finding a decent spot to eat or shop still requires a little research.
Between deciphering foreign menus or ingredient lists and trying to explain to a French waiter exactly what “vegan” means, travelling as a vegan certainly has it’s unique challenges and frustrating moments. Luckily, there are a bunch of (mostly free) vegan travel apps that can make your trip stress-free and a whole lot tastier!
Whether you’re vegan or trying to be a more conscious traveller by choosing plant-based options, here are 7 helpful apps to download before you go.
7 Travel apps every vegan needs
This one is top of the list for a reason. The Happy Cow website has been around since 1999, but their amazing database of veg-friendly restaurants and shops in over 180 countries is also available in an app.
I use their website to plan which cafes and restaurants I’d like to visit before I go. I keep the mobile app handy for when I’m wandering around a foreign city with absolutely zero idea of where to find vegan options!
You can filter between vegan-only, vegetarian and ‘restaurants with veg options available’. There are so many reviews as well, which makes picking the best place for you really easy. It’s certainly worth the cost – I couldn’t travel without it.
Ok so this isn’t specifically for vegans, but I use Google Translate every time I go to a non English-speaking country. This is a handy app for translating ingredient lists and menus, or typing a message for a waiter if you’re struggling to communicate. Google Translate has become more accurate in recent years, so this is a good go-to when you’re stuck.
V cards: Vegan abroad
With the free V Cards app you’re vegan in over 100 languages.
Select a language to find out how to say you’re vegan. Then simply show this app to your server to give them a full understanding of what you can eat. It works offline, too! Alternatively get the free PDF of all translations to print.
COST: Free | Apple (sorry, Android users)
One of the most used travel apps, TripAdvisor features thousands of reviews for restaurants, hotels, and activities.
Simply search “vegan” in your location and it will likely show a range of options and reviews so you can suss a place out before you go.
This is a great resource if you’re travelling solo or looking to make new friends. MeetUp brings together people with similar interests, and those groups then create events which are available to the public.
Click on “Explore”, type in “Vegan” and you’ll find a bunch of upcoming events in your area. I spent lovely winter’s morning hiking with fellow vegans in Dublin after finding the event on MeetUp.
Vegan Finder can help you find cruelty-free, safe and healthy food restaurants near you. The app has a collection of over 90,000 different vegan/vegetarian restaurants worldwide, meaning you won’t go hungry!
Stuck in a hostel or AirBnB with limited ingredients? Plant Jammer is your new best friend! Plug in the ingredients that are already in your fridge and Plant Jammer will create a list of recipe recommendations. The app goes beyond a regular cookbook and lets you create step-by-step cooking instructions, so you’ll love it at home, too.
What apps have helped you travel as a vegan? Share them in the comments!