Air Canada served a bottle of water as the vegan meal on 10-hour flight

Originally published at: Air Canada served a bottle of water as the vegan meal on 10-hour flight | Boing Boing


This is likely a symptom of Air Canada’s current troubles.

They were apparently caught completely off guard by the post-COVID travel boom. We’ve received two letters of apology from the CEO (another one just yesterday) about how bad their service has been. They’ve been cancelling flights and entire routes to lower traffic to a level they can apparently handle better, but it’s only helped a little. The nice direct flight between a US and Canadian major city that I used to fly with them every few months for the past 20 years is gone now, so I have to take a horrible connection that is so tight that I have to sprint a quarter mile through the airport for it every time. Every. Time.

They are regularly reporting three hour delays for domestic flights in Toronto, and two hour delays in Vancouver and Calgary. It’s a real mess.

I hope things get better soon, but until then I’m choosing WestJet more even though I prefer AC (much nicer planes, cheaper, and used to have better routes….)


Well, I hope they had the decency to heat bottle up first, at least.


Our family has had this happen many times over the years, long before Covid and with a number of different airlines. And that’s even with most of the requested meals being vegetarian, not even vegan.

Special meals often aren’t loaded, despite being ordered. Why? Well, it’s usually only a few meals (and therefore passengers) per flight, and most people aren’t willing to have a hissy fit and get thrown off, so the airlines get away with it. Special meals probably more expensive or something.


There’s plenty of perfectly good cellulose in that ‘empty’ napkin; I’ll have you know!

Mammals these days just aren’t willing to work for their monosaccharides.


I don’t understand why people expect airplanes to also function as restaurants in the first place


Because they tell us they’re going to. If they tell me ahead of time they won’t serve food, that’s fine—I’ll bring my own. But if they say the flight is going to include meals, they should deliver on their promise.


Yeah, the airline screwed up by promising and then not delivering. Al the other meals seemed to make it onto the plane just fine.

Still, she could have just sucked it up and taken a regular meal and picked around those parts that aren’t vegan or at least vegetarian. Unless she has some severe food allergy, it ain’t gonna kill her.


Not true, she got an empty napkin for her second meal. /s


Short flights, sure, but people have an expectation to have at least one meal on a 10 hour flight, and if people bring their own meals there’s more chance of spillage/gross smells.


It’s also difficult to bring enough food for yourself and your family for multiple meals on a flight. You can’t bring much through security these days, customs won’t allow produce, and they gouge you at the gate, so if the airlines won’t serve food then we’re stuck filling our carry-ons with survival rations and peanuts. Then sometimes they force you to gate-check your carry-on because everyone else abuses the overhead bin space, and then you’re really screwed. I have subsisted through a few 12 hours flights on Diet Coke and mints. I’m not a nice person when we land.


… yeah, right, that must be it :roll_eyes:

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You can’t ‘pick around’ something being cooked in butter or with chicken stock.

And while it might not kill her, it’s likely to make her sick. Would you want to sit next to someone on a long flight who was undergoing gastric distress from food poisoning?


Exactly. 10hours sounds like international.
I’ve done international flights that you could take zero food onto. No sandwich, fruit, drinks, even water.
All had to be dumped before boarding, with hand checks of your carryon. You had to depend on what the plan would serve you.


It was Frankfurt to Toronto.

It’s disappointing that when the cabin crew found the meals – which had been booked in advance – had not been loaded, they didn’t apologise and offer some kind of substitute. First Class usually has a selection of fruit and bread if nothing else.


That is what happened.

Quote: @thekindtraveler shout out to the kind flight attendant that got me fruit & dinner rolls from business class


Oh wow. I’ve only received one from the CEO of Lufthansa


Just like people of Jewish or Islamic faith can just suck it up and pick around the pork and shellfish, right?

As @Haikumatt noted, the airline provided a vegan option. It’s not like Ms. Porter could decide to go elsewhere for a meal, and not everyone can, or wants to fast “graciously” for 10+ hours.

Vegetarians and Vegans are often treated as second class citizens — or children — in public settings, if not with straight up contempt.

At the end of the day it’s about respect and consideration. An incident like this shows neither.


It’s not that they want to feed you. They want you to stay sitting down. Feeding you is the easiest way to do that.


As was nearly ever UK airline (except, weirdly, Ryanair) who laid off staff during Covid and now cannot replace them fast enough. Same deal for the airports, compounding the problems (though it is starting to seem that the airports are the bigger root cause of problems now).