Meal Planning Tips For Travelers
“Always On the go?” “No time to plan meals?” Then try these meal planning travel tips!
The “On-The-Go” mentality seems to run our lives nowadays. We seem to be in a rush the moment we get up by the time we get home from work. Even then, it doesn’t slow down. By the time we relax, it’s already time to go to bed. Then the cycle continues.
I lived with this “on-the-go” mentality for years. I know how difficult it is to travel a lot and feel that rush on a daily basis. I commuted to work and spent a total of 4 hours of day on the road. It is not a way to live. Before I knew it, I was feeling tired, irritable, and cranky. Of course, the traffic didn’t help the situation. But also, not having the proper nutrition or calories for the day contributed to my stress.
As a result I had to take charge and come up with a plan!
There are a few questions that you need to ask yourself before you start meal planning “on-the-go”. These questions along with my meal planning travel tips are outlined below.
Depending on what your answers are, you can design a meal plan that will work best for you and your lifestyle. Remember, meal planning is supposed to be a benefit, not a nuisance. The sooner you start on the path of meal planning, the sooner you can lead a healthier life.
Meal Planning Travel Tips
1)How often are you “on the go” or travel each week?
Based on the number of days you travel or are “on the go” each week, you will need to decide how often you will grocery shop. Will you grocery shop on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis? What will work best for you? Based on this, you will know exactly how much groceries to buy in a given week to avoid wasting any food.
2)What type of meals will be easy to take on an airplane, eat while driving, or not spoil until you reach your destination?
I am not condoning eating while driving, but hey, you know the reality. The only foods I eat while driving are quick finger foods. I usually snacked on baby carrots or I cut up veggies/ fruits and placed them in a sandwich bag. The ones that worked well are: Cucumbers, Bell Peppers, Baby Carrots, Cherry Tomatoes, Apples, Oranges, and bananas. If I needed “heartier” finger foods, I would cut up a muffin, eat hard boiled eggs, bagels. If your food is already cut up, then it is easier to eat them instead of going through your bag while driving!
If you plan to take them on the plane, it is easier to put in your bag and won’t create a huge mess.
3)What type of foods won’t spoil until I get to my destination?
This is a very important question. If you are traveling quite a bit, you do not want to be transporting foods that will spoil quickly, especially during hot summer months. If you must, you can always purchase a cooler. Otherwise, plan for non perishable food items. Canned foods are great. I would take canned tuna to work and mix it in with my rice. I avoided mayo. Canned soups are also wonderful, as are, canned fruit. I also would take Top Ramen soups as well. Cold cut sandwiches also worked. I never had a problem with them going bad in a 2 hour drive.
4)When do I prepare my meals?
The best time to prepare your travel food is the night before. That way, when you are ready to leave, all you have to do is grab and go!
5)What are the benefits?
There are a lot of benefits for planning your meals. In addition to it being a time saver, meal planning benefits far outweigh the initial investment you put in. You will truly notice a difference in how you feel. Speaking for me, when I am rushing around town and have not eaten properly, I just don’t feel like myself. Who wants to constantly feel run down?
6)I travel by plane, I can take snacks, but what about meals?
If you travel by plane, sandwiches are the way to go. Especially if you won’t arrive at your destination anytime soon. If it is not a long commute, take some snack foods with you. When you reach your destination, you are bound to eat out a lot, unless you have the luxury of staying with friends or family. Otherwise, make healthy choices. Go to restaurants that have healthier meal options. Eat salads with protein such as chicken, steak, etc..
No one has to eat at greasy fast food joints!
7)I travel by car, I can take snacks, but what about meals?
Otherwise, if the commute is not long, and have access to a microwave at your destination, you can transport leftover meals from dinner in a cooler and later heat up your meals.
8)It sounds great, but I don’t know where to start!
Exploring a few organization tips for your kitchen will get the ball rolling. It is an investment in time, initially, but it does pay off in the end. These are a few of my meal planning travel tips. If you are interested in learning additional methods and get back on track to eating right, mealplan4me.com has some additional meal planning tips and ideas. My meal planning travel tips for those of you “on the go” should enable you to start the process of organization. Short of having wonderfully balanced meals at home, “on-the-go” meal plans do not have to include fast food meals!