6 easy ways to save money on food at the airport

Supavadee butradee/ShutterstockEating at the airport can be pricey.

From baggage fees and paying for airline extras like extended legroom to faster boarding, priority seating, or in-flight entertainment, it feels like flying is a more expensive experience than ever before. Eating at the airport or on your aeroplane can rack up costs too, especially if you feel forced to spend when you’re overly hungry or in a time crunch. Make note of these simple hacks to save money next time you jet set.


Pack in the protein before you go.

ShuttrerstockProtein is essential in staying full.

Eating protein can help you feel full longer, which will save you from spending too much money when you become ravenous and are willing to pay a high price for a quick fix. Eat a balanced meal before you leaving home, such as an egg-based breakfast or protein-packed lunch, and push yourself to buy food that will leave you satiated and sustained, rather than expensive, sugary or salty snacks and novelties.


Bring your own snacks.

Shutterstock/Aaron AmatBars can be a good snack to bring on the plane.

It might be obvious, but bringing your own snacks can save you major money at the airport. Veggies and fruits are nutritious items to take through security, while bars can help you stave off hunger by providing the right mix of nutrients.

Bringing the right kind of bar is also helpful if you’re on a special eating plan or have trouble finding low-cost options that are low sugar, gluten, or grain-free. Trail mix is another good option, as you can make it fairly low-cost shopping in the bulk food section, and it keeps well while travelling and over time.


Tap into free water

Swell BottleFill up bottles once you past security.

Most airports have free, drinkable bubbling water you can use to fill up your water bottle. Not only will this save you money you might’ve spent on buying bottled water, but using a smart bottle will ensure you keep it cold longer.

You can use hot water to make a more filling snack, too: Asking for a cup of boiling hot water is almost always free, and you can add it to instant meals or soup packs for a low-cost snack that will hold you over or save you from spending more.


Make your own smoothie on the fly.

Albina Glisic/ShutterstockBring protein powder and shaker for when you get past security.

Joanna Sutter of Fitness and Spice Marketing saves money by making her own shakes instead of splurging on fancy blended drinks at the airport. “Bring protein powder and a shaker. Nine times out of 10, you can get water and ice free of charge at an airport snack bar or food court and whip up a quick shake on the go,” she told Mint.com. “Sometimes, if you ask nicely, you can get some places in the airport with a blender to actually mix up a shake for you.”


Opt for veggie dishes, rather than meat.

Jacek Chabraszewski/ ShutterstockVeggie based food will be cheaper at the airport.

Veggie based meals often clock in at a lower cost than take away options or sit-down meals with meat. If you’re not super hungry but need something nutritious to take the edge off, consider ordering a veggie sandwich or salad. Just half an avocado or an apple can help you feel full.

Pro tip: Veggie-based meals also last longer than those with meat do, as they don’t necessarily rely on refrigeration. If you fill up quickly, feel fine about preserving the freshness of your meal for the next couple of hours.


Save money buy banishing booze.

Peter Alfred Hess/FlickrSkipping the drinks at the airport will save you a lot.

Nixing alcohol from your airport visit is a surefire way to save cash; pricey cocktails add up quickly – and they fail to provide you with filling nutrients.

Need another reason to say no to alcohol at the airport or while in-flight? Drinking has been shown to initiate hunger pangs, which might lead you to spend even more money while waiting for your next flight or while in the air.

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