What to do when travelling by plane if you’re vegan and gluten free?

First of all, yay, you’re going on a plane to somewhere new. How exciting! You’ll be busy planning your travels, sorting all the necessary paperwork and packing a bag. If you're anything like me you’ll have written a packing list, jumped up and down with excitement and started a count down Calendar.

But hold your horses.... there are a couple of things you need to consider before stepping on that plane. You’ve booked your flights, you should then make your airline aware of your dietary requirements. If your booking option was like mine (lots of airlines are the same) you can only select one type of meal. e.g. you can choose gluten free OR Vegan So I chose the gluten intolerance option and then added an additional comment asking if it can be vegan too to clarify my meal choice.

This was NOT enough!

These were the choices I had... Child (2-11 years); DiabeticFruit Platter; Gluten Intolerance; Hindu; Infant (0-11 months); Kosher Meal; Muslim (Halal); Vegetarian (Asian Indian Style); Vegetarian (Lacto Ovo); Vegetarian (Oriental); Vegetarian (Strict Indian); Vegan

Top Tip 1...

Following your booking, make sure you contact your airline directly by phone and then by email with plenty of notice before your flight. I had to phone five times before my airline was able to update my passenger details correctly. When I was on the plane, having written confirmation from the airline helped our air stewards get the meal right or certainly prove what you’re asking for if something isn’t right. So ask them for a confirmation email too.

Before they can confirm, your airline may need to check that they can provide your meal and will offer to ring you back. Ask for a name, their direct number and a rough timescale to chase them if they haven’t replied. I didn’t and having to explain this over and over was quite funny / repetitive but also a waste of time too as I didn't get that call back.

Top Tip 2... Don’t give up trying.