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The Essential  Aid  For Vegan Voyagers
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The Essential Aid For Vegan Voyagers

As we all know, eating out as vegans can be a real headache, when trying to get a meal made with no animal products. When you are within your own locality, country and environment, you get to know the places you can go, like the vegan-friendly eateries. You also knows what products you can buy in shops, etc. But what happens when you have to travel abroad and still try to stay principled? That is where the "Vegan Passport" comes in so handy.

How many of you here have one of these, or have heard of it?

First published in 1996 by the Vegan Society in Great Britain, this wonderful little multilingual phrase-book is about the same size as a normal passport (maybe a bit thicker). It is very portable, and it explains the principles of veganism in 73 languages (This includes Esperanto! Does anyone even speak Esperanto? I've yet to meet them.)  I was given this book recently by a friend, and I am thrilled with it, in part because I am a linguist.

When travelling to other countries, we have to take into account that many people abroad will not understand what veganism is, and there may be a language barrier. What we eat may need to be spelled out to them in their own tongue. Veganism is not a concept that is familiar at all to many peoples, particularly not in developing countries, where many people often don't have enough to eat at all.  (Eating only certain types of foods may be a luxury many people don’t have!)

Although vegetarianism is gaining a foothold in many countries now, (which is encouraging), the practice of eschewing all animal products, is often more controversial. The principles of our lifestyle often need to be elaborated to people, which is the explanatory message on the title page of the Vegan Passport. The English text says:

I am a vegan/We are vegans. On principle, vegans do not eat anything of animal origin, - for the benefit of people, animals and the environment.

 So we do not eat: meat (including minced meat, sausages, etc.), poultry (including chicken), fish, shellfish, or other animal products such as honey, eggs, milk, butter, cheese, or other dairy product.

But we do eat: potatoes, rice, pasta (non-egg), beans, vegetables, tomatoes, fruits, nuts, mushrooms; breads or pastries made without animal fat; cereals and cereal products, etc. Soups and sauces may be made with vegetable stock but not with meat or chicken extracts. Only pure vegetable oil or pure vegetable margarine may be used in cooking, not butter or any other animal fat

 Please, can you provide a meal which meets our requirements? THANK YOU VERY MUCH." 

They seem to have covered all the bases there, not much excuse for anyone getting it wrong! On all of the other pages, the above statement is then translated into 73 other languages, which should be enough to communicate with over 95% of the world's population (and they even have pictures, if you still can’t explain it in words!) There is a also a note at the end which says: “The Vegan Society is always pleased to hear of any corrections or improvements to the translations in this book, and to receive any offers of translation into languages not already included.”

I was given my passport by a friend as she now has a more recent edition. This one is slightly out- of-date. But I am sure it will suit my purposes admirably, if I ever get to travel again! (I haven't done any globe-trotting for years, and the last time I went abroad I was vegetarian, not vegan, so I am very glad to have this passport.  I am aware travel food will be more of a challenge in the future!) 

I am just waiting now for Providence to give me the opportunity to use my new gift.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hope you enjoyed this blog. Your votes and comments are always appreciated.

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  1. No Name
    Very nice I have read this before and a friend of mine came here to Tahiti with one. I was laughing and said you do not need this as long as you stay with me. She understood this one but was afraid to go out to eat here. I tried to explain to her that here this one is not such a problem and they have a lot for vegans to eat here on the islands. Vote # 3 thanks
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  2. SnakeWitch
    Voted! **sigh** Remember this article? http://www.theflamingvegan.com/view-post/A-Vegan-Never-Leaves-Home-Without. I have to remind this woman of everything!!! ;) The one in my article is for both vegetarians and vegans, though. Yours is what I would need, because people still don't believe I don't eat cheese, even vegetarians. I don't actually have the passport - never bothered asking for it - but I think I might consider the vegan one.
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    1. SnakeWitch
      Vote number four!
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      1. Veganara
        Veganara
        Thanks Annie! No, you don't have to remind me of everything, I can assure you I have an ELEPHANTINE memory!!! (I often wish I didn't!!) I DO remember your article - actually I looked it up on this site before I posted mine, to see if I was duplicating too much. But yours is a different one from mine, isn't it? I haven't seen yours anywhere, is it an American-produced one? I should get one anyway if I can, since it has all those discounts in it!
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        1. SnakeWitch
          Ha ha! I knew I'd get a reaction from you! ;) I had a feeling that you remembered. I think mine could be South American. I've never heard of the Spoon Revolution in English-speaking countries, anyways. So it could be a latino thing. I put the link to order one, though, so you can check it out if you want. I've never gotten around to ordering mine.
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    2. Akanksha
      Akanksha
      Yeah it reminded me of your article Annie!
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  3. kristo
    kristo
    This sounds very useful. A few weeks ago my landlady asked me if I wanted to try termite and I had to remind her that insects are not plants. This book would have helped multo. voted!
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  4. Veghead
    I've got one of these, wouldn't be without it! Voted.
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  5. Theophile
    Theophile
    This is very useful information. I think anyone who travels a lot should take a copy of this to carry with them. Vote #8
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  6. Bernice
    Very informative vote #9 I will have to find one for me
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  7. Conroy
    This is very good but I am sorry did not read where I can get one. Voted #10
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    1. Veganara
      Veganara
      Thank you Conroy. Actually yes, I probably should have given details of how to get one! You can either email this address: info@vegansociety.com, or write to :The Vegan Society, Donald Watson House, 21 Hylton Street, Hockley, Birmingham, B18 6JH. (It is a matter of national pride to me that the Vegan Society was founded here in England!!!)
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      1. Veganara
        Veganara
        I also want to add that if any of you ladies and gents are ever in England some time on your travels, you must let me know, and maybe we can meet up! London is a hotspot for great vegetarian/vegan restaurants and cafes!
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