Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

Review of Air Transat

We’re baaaaaaack! We’ve returned home from spending three weeks in Italy. It’s good to be back to the world of travel blogging at last. We took a small hiatus from blogging while traveling so we could be fully immersed in our new surroundings, and now we’re back with so many stories to tell. Let’s start back at the very beginning with our flight. Actually, I’ll tell you all about both of the flights on our trip, like two giant bookends on either side of our Italian holiday. There was a flight at the beginning of our trip from Toronto to Venice, and the one coming home was out of Rome. Both of these flights were on board similar Air Transat planes. We’ve both flown Air Transat before, though they were shorter flights to Fort Lauderdale and Dominican Republic. As you can tell from the above photo, we were seated at the back of the plane.

SEAT SELECTION

We chose to sit at the very back of the plane (seats 31 A and C). To choose your seats on Air Transat, you have to pay a small fee of $20 per seat selected (unless you choose one of the more “premium” seat choices where you get extra leg room, like at the very front of the economy section or at one of the emergency exits, where you would pay a higher fee). We chose the very back of the plane for a couple of reasons. First, it was one of the few spots on the plane where we weren’t in a row of three seats. There were only two seats beside one another, which was more appealing as neither of us would be stuck in the middle seat. Second, there wouldn’t be anyone sitting behind us. We wouldn’t have to deal with anyone kicking our seats. Plus, we could recline our seats as much as we liked without having to worry about leaning too far back into someone’s personal space.

Here’s why it was a very bad idea to choose these seats, at least on our overnight flight from Toronto to Venice.

I really wanted to sleep during this flight. We left at 10:30pm in Toronto, arriving at 12:30pm in Venice the next day. It was a nine hour flight. I know it’s difficult to sleep on planes, but I was trying several different things to assist my body in nodding off to a wonderful dreamlike state. First of all, I woke up really early in the morning that day to ensure that I could fall asleep easily that night.

There was a David’s Tea at the airport, so I bought a sleepy-time tea there that would put me into a relaxed state.

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

I had a comfortable neck pillow to feel more at ease during the flight.

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

We even decided to drink a small glass of wine. Sometimes wine makes me sleepy, so I figured that could only help, right!

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

Well, nothing could save us from the dreaded bathroom that was located at the back of the plane. Throughout the night, there were constant line-ups, the sounds of toilets flushing, people tugging at the backs of our chairs, and heavy footsteps back and forth past our seats. The location of the bathroom was one of the elements that made it impossible to sleep. I was also unable to sleep because I was freezing cold during the entire flight to Venice! I should have brought a blanket, or at least purchased one. On the flight home, I actually splurged and bought a blanket for $9 and it was well worth it. I was cozy and warm, and actually managed to get some rest! On the flight to Venice, it was awful because my body felt tired, my eyes felt very tired, and I really could feel myself wanting to sleep…except the noise and movement around my seat kept me awake.

On the way home, our flight from Rome was at 2:00pm and we were arriving in Toronto at 5:45pm, so there really wasn’t any need to sleep. In this case, I didn’t mind these seats at all. It was nice having a little bit of extra leg room, having just the two of us beside one another, having no seats behind us, and all of the other reasons that I listed above. However, if you want to get any rest, don’t choose these seats.

THE STAFF

We found the staff on board to be quite pleasant and helpful. Particularly on our flight home, the staff were very friendly and understanding. They always had a positive and upbeat attitude. We didn’t even seem to mind the line-up of people by the bathroom on the flight home, yet the airline stewards were extra apologetic for any inconvenience this may have caused us. They offered us some snacks for free that you normally would have to pay for. It’s the small things sometimes that leave a lasting positive impression.

THE FOOD

We were really impressed with the meals on board Air Transat. Of course, we were a little concerned at first because we didn’t know if we could fly Air Transat with vegan meals. We had to call Air Transat in advance and make a special request for our flight meals. The option we chose was “vegetarian without dairy products”. We didn’t know if this would end up being a vegan meal. Would it contain egg or other animal products? We’ve also heard reports of airlines forgetting to bring the special meals on board sometimes. Justin and I brought lots of extra snacks just in case something like this happened. Well, the meals we received were indeed completely vegan, and they were quite yummy!

In both cases, the meals consisted of an entree, a small green salad with balsamic vinaigrette, a little baguette, a glass of water, and a small fruit salad. The entree on our flight to Venice was spiced quinoa and sweet potatoes. On our flight from Rome, our meal was basmati rice with spicy bean masala. Both meals were satisfying and tasty. We were very happy to be able to fly Air Transat with vegan meals. Thank you, Air Transat, for being so vegan-friendly!

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

FLYING TO VENICE

After hours of trying to sleep and being unable, I decided to open my airplane window screen to peer outside. To my surprise, the bright light spilled into the cabin – it seemed like moments ago it was nighttime, and suddenly, it was the middle of the day. Flying across time zones really does mess with your mind! Once my eyes adjusted to the light, I was in awe of the beautiful view as we were flying over the Alps.

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

My first glimpses of Venice were far less spectacular. Of course, the scene around the airport isn’t at all what you picture when you think of Venice as it is located outside of the city core.

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

Our plane landed and we were in Venice at last. And this is where the adventures truly begin.

Review of Air Transat with Vegan Meals

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Lauren
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Lauren is one half of "Justin Plus Lauren". She loves to travel, take photos, and write all about it! Lauren eats a plant-based diet and seeks out yummy vegan food on her travels. She loves nature, animals, outdoor adventures, coffee, and her cats, Chickpea and Peanut.

30 Responses

  1. Jenna
    | Reply

    I always love the back corner seats on planes–except for the bathroom traffic, it’s always nice not having a middle seat and being able to recline as much as you can without having someone behind you. Glad they had the vegan meals for you and that they were tasty–sounds like great service!
    Jenna recently posted…A Photo Essay: Prague, Czech RepublicMy Profile

  2. The Adventure Ahead
    | Reply

    I had wondered about Vegan meals on flights. While we are not entirely vegan, it is great to see that there are some healthy options available. Your meals sounded delicious πŸ™‚
    The Adventure Ahead recently posted…Finding the Volio WaterfallMy Profile

  3. Whoa, that view of the mountains is quite spectacular!!!! That’s the reason I always choose window seat, well done!
    Raphael Alexander Zoren recently posted…The Israel Mediterranean: From Crusaders to Hummus!My Profile

  4. Tami
    | Reply

    Sometimes that back row of seats doesn’t recline at all. It’s backed up to a straight wall with no room to recline! So do be careful when choosing back seats!
    Tami recently posted…San Diego County FairMy Profile

    • Lauren
      | Reply

      This is true. Thanks for the reminder! πŸ™‚ Definitely recommend checking out Seatguru to see if your seats recline or not! Thankfully, ours weren’t against a wall and they did recline.
      Lauren recently posted…A Romantic Gondola Ride in Venice with TingglyMy Profile

  5. Sarah Lynn
    | Reply

    Can’t wait to hear more about your Italian adventure!
    I’m in Italy now (Elba Island) and am taking the train to explore Rome later this afternoon. Maybe we can compare notes. Lol.
    Sarah Lynn recently posted…An Afternoon in VeniceMy Profile

  6. Amy
    | Reply

    I’m so glad to read this review today – we’re flying Air Transat home from Venice to Toronto in a couple of weeks. I’ve been looking all over the internet to find blog posts or any sort of personal reviews of Air Transat but they seem to be few and far between. Aside from the sleep on the way over, I’m glad to hear you had a positive experience. This sets my mind at ease a bit!
    Amy recently posted…Common Budget Travel MythsMy Profile

  7. It’s always a challenge getting a different meal in an airline. I know I have a pepper allergy and most of the time I can’t eat anything they serve.
    Carmen | Carmen’s Luxury Travel recently posted…Codorniu Cava Winery TourMy Profile

    • Lauren
      | Reply

      That would be so difficult. I imagine that pepper is in everything!! I suppose you could try calling and asking them to remove it from your meal, though sometimes it’s best not to take that chance.
      Lauren recently posted…A Romantic Gondola Ride in Venice with TingglyMy Profile

  8. Jane M
    | Reply

    My least favourite thing about vegan airplane meals is that they always give you the “fresh” fruit for dessert. Everyone else gets some yummy cake or cookie and we’re stuck eating crunchy, flavourless honeydew melon. Bleh. I always pack a vegan chocolate bar for the flight to avoid dessert envy.
    Jane M recently posted…What to do When You’re Too Busy to Travel (or to Even Think About It)My Profile

    • Lauren
      | Reply

      It’s kinda funny that you say that, sometimes I feel the same way…but I was seriously CRAVING that melon on the way home as I hadn’t eaten too much fruit while in Italy! And the honeydew/strawberry/cantaloupe combo was actually really fresh tasting. I also like to pack vegan chocolate bars when possible, I always bring these yummy cookies from a local bakery when we fly on our way traveling somewhere! Yum!!!
      Lauren recently posted…A Romantic Gondola Ride in Venice with TingglyMy Profile

  9. Allison
    | Reply

    Thanks for this post. Our youngest is allergic to eggs and most meat products so we try to stick with Vegan dishes when out to avoid an allergic reaction. Good to know you had tasty vegan friendly options!

  10. Sammi Wanderlustin'
    | Reply

    *If* I book seats I always choose an aisle seat about half way down the plane, just behind the emergency exits. I just had to book seats with Norwegian and was pleased to get aisle seats. Even with my short legs I like the space of the aisle seat, and won’t swap for a centre seat.

    Do you travel with a sarong usually? That’s usually an awesome way to keep warm on a plane and not need a blanket πŸ˜‰

    It’s great that you guys managed to get fully vegan meals on your flight πŸ™‚ so good when the airline can comply like that πŸ™‚
    Sammi Wanderlustin’ recently posted…Notes on ManchesterMy Profile

  11. Andrea
    | Reply

    oooh the Alps look amazing! I’ve never even heard of that airline but hey- I hope Italy was amazing! Can’t wait to read about it.
    Andrea recently posted…Wine Tasting around Keuka Lake- Hammondsport, NYMy Profile

  12. Ruth - Exploramum
    | Reply

    Well I think you make me want to go and take a flight – you have great photography and reading this made me hungry. Venice from the air – awesome!

    • Lauren
      | Reply

      Thanks so much, Ruth!! While flights can be really tiring and uncomfortable, we definitely made the best of it here. I wouldn’t hesitate to board a plane right now if it meant going somewhere as awesome as Italy πŸ™‚
      Lauren recently posted…A Romantic Gondola Ride in Venice with TingglyMy Profile

  13. antonette - we12travel
    | Reply

    This looks very tasty I have to say. A couple of months ago I flew to South America and somehow they got me a vegan meal (I’m not a vegan). Which turned out to be dry rice and beans plus a tasteless roll of bread so needless to say I wasn’t too happy, but Air Transat seems to do a much better deal. I flew with them to Canada a couple of years ago and really enjoyed the flight!
    antonette – we12travel recently posted…Hiking wish: Harding Icefield Trail in AlaskaMy Profile

  14. OMG we love plane meals! And we love how easy it is now to get vegan food on airplanes, we think most airlines have that option, right? It’s nice when you’re travelling in a country where it’s hard to find vegan food, then you get on a plane and…well, you can finally eat. Great post and nice photos! Good to see other vegans travel. Happy travels πŸ™‚

  15. Charlene
    | Reply

    I’m just back from Venice and it is such fun to read about it from another persons view! I’ll be reading all your posts!

    You did have a sad view flying in … my view was a gorgeous shot of St Marks Square! I was surprised to be able to see it when coming in for a landing!

  16. Jake
    | Reply

    For the vegan meal, did you just go with “VEGETARIAN, WITHOUT DAIRY PRODUCTS” and risk it, or did you explicitly ask for vegan when you called?

    • Lauren
      Lauren
      | Reply

      Hi Jake. That’s exactly what we chose. That’s their way of labeling a vegan meal….even though it doesn’t specify no animal products, you’ll receive a vegan meal if you request that. On the phone, they might not know what it means if you ask “is it vegan?” but in our experiences flying there and back from Italy, “vegetarian without dairy products” = vegan. Hope that helps!
      Lauren recently posted…Travel Blogger Thursday – Sofie of Wonderful WanderingsMy Profile

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