Saying Goodbye to Airplane Food in Coach and First Class
A young couple with two children sitting next to us on a domestic flight ordered food for their entire family. Their total ticket? $68 US, enough for a couple to share a top-notch meal at a fine restaurant. With all the baggage and travel fees that airlines are charging you these days, I thought maybe I should share the way I eat on board airplanes these days.
Cockroaches! I'm Not Safe in First Class?
Most of the benefits of first class are geared towards satisfying the simple tastes of business travelers (read: lobotomized monkeys), so, while first class meals are definitely better than coach, it's still airplane food, so what really is the difference? If you have experience with good food, you won't like what you're being served on an airplane, whether you're being overcharged in coach or being served up in first-class.
In 2010, the USA Today uncovered reports from the FDA using the Freedom of Information Act. What they found? Airline food is unsafe, and the companies that make your airline food had kitchens littered with cockroaches, flies and rodent feces. The kitchen workers? Poor personal hygiene. The FDA findings were so shocking, that airline food was considered so unsanitary as to simply not be safe, at any elevation.
What's more...first class food is in no way immune to cockroaches licking your Southwest Chicken. It's the same factory, with the same guy who doesn't wash his hands. So the next time some lobotomized monkey tells you why his company is paying him a thousand dollars more to fly first class so he can eat like a king, you know that he, and his company, are morons.
So What's the Secret?
There's no secret. Just a good habit that we've lost since we've grown accustomed to free food on an airline. Whether riding first class or coach, avoid eating anything the airlines serve you, unless its bottled, and pack yourself a good meal.
If you have a decent lunch box, this can be done quickly, even while traveling globally. I prefer packing a bento box with cheeses, fruits and olives, and carrying a fresh french bread aboard. Olives and fresh almonds are great too.
A well-packed bento box packs nutrition in a small space. Here are my two lunchbots and a wood cutting board which acts as a plate. This takes up just a tiny amount of space in a carry-on. In fact, all three items rest on an iPad to show you the size:
We prefer metal bento boxes like these by LunchBots, because plastic and food don't always go well together, and because I need to keep my carry-on light and small. But there are endless varieties of metal, wood and plastic bento boxes, as well as larger North American-style lunch boxes with plenty of room. Try an Asian grocery store for variety.