October 19, 2009

Eating on the Fly

When you spend your life in hotels and in the air, it can be difficult to take care of yourself with regard to your diet and exercise. When you work odd hours on top of that, it becomes extra difficult. There's nothing quite like wanting to eat a nice healthy meal, only to arrive at your hotel in the wee hours of the morning and the only thing room service is interested in making is fries and toasted sandwiches.

For Aussie flight attendants, bringing your own food isn't the easy solution you might think, as in most cases, you cannot take fresh food across state borders. Things like cup-of-soup or dried fruits are fine, but salads, fresh fruit, sandwiches and the like are totally prohibited to be taken from one state to another. So if you want to BYO a nice salad for lunch, it has to be eaten before you get off the plane. Sure you can try to sneak it in, but Quarantine have the cute beagle dogs which will sniff out a single rogue grape at 30 feet! And if they find that apple you're trying to bring in... cha-ching!! $200 dollars, thanks!

What's a girl to do? Get creative, of course!! We've heard of cooking in your hotel room, but what if a) you can't be bothered and b) you fear all the potential germs hanging around on the counter tops? Here's what I did on a recent layover...

Take a walk to the supermarket & pick out your ingredients. In this case I decided a caesar salad was in order. I went and got my cos lettuce, cherry tomatoes, a 1/4 cooked chicken (make sure to ask them to take it out of the foil bag & put it in a take-away container) and a pre-packed salad kit which had croutons, dressing, bacon pieces etc...

much easier and no wastage from having enough croutoons for 10 salads.

1. Clear & wipe down the counter in the bathroom (just in case) next to the basin. The salad came in one of those trays sealed in a plastic bag. Flatten the bag and as you wash the salad leaves, shake them and place them on the bag so they don't touch the icky counter top.

Do the same with the cherry tomatoes, putting the clean ones on one side of the plastic tub to drain.

2. Take the 1/4 chicken and pull it into salad-size pieces, putting them on the lid of the take-away container. Discard the unused chicken scraps and wash the container out. Now layer the lettuce & cherry tomatoes into the container, adding the chicken as you like.

3. Using the salad kit, add half the croutons, bacon bits, cheese and dressing.

If you have any left over salad, once you've eaten the first half, rinse the container & make up another, putting the sachets of dressing & croutons in the container to add again the next day for lunch!

Two meals for arounf $10, much cheaper than airport food, and healthier than room service!


  1. wait, you all can not take food from state to state within Australia? I think I would flip out. The only time I have problems bringing food with me is when I go to Canada. I live off the food I bring. Nice job being creative and aware of how icky all the hotels are. :)

  2. Wow I'm nowhere nearly that organized to make my own salad in a room :P...
    Its Sumo Salad for me :P

  3. I'm going to try that...I hate eating all the food that I brought with me in 10mins on the plane....

  4. Skies, no most states in Australia have really strict quarantine laws. You can cop a $200-400 fine just for something like an apple, banana or other fresh fruit. Better not to risk it!

    SHB, all well and good if there's takeout places nearby... not so much if all you have is a supermarket. I'm trying to resist the chip.n.dip aisle as much as possible! :D

    L, it wasn't too bad, except Paul Newman's caesar dressing is way better than the one in this packet....

    Michelle, once you get started it's easy to do, just takes being organised that's all! But better than getting a fine or spending huge $$$ on room service!


Pick up the interphone, make your announcement!