When you’ve been sitting on a bus for a few hours, it’s pretty common to feel peckish after a while. If your stomach starts to rumble but the next food stop seems like a lifetime away, having a stash of tasty snacks handy can hold you over until the next meal.
But can you bring snacks on a charter bus? Absolutely! Snacks are a fun, convenient and delicious addition to any road trip, but it’s important to choose them strategically. You’ll want to pack snacks that are mess-free and easy to eat. Explore some of the best snacks to bring on a charter bus!
Snacks to Avoid Bringing on a Charter Bus
Before we dive into the best snacks for motorcoach travel, let’s briefly go over some foods you’ll want to avoid packing:
- Easily perishable foods: Most perishable foods must be refrigerated to stay fresh and edible. It’s best to stay away from milk, mayonnaise, hot meat and any other foods that can easily go bad during lengthy road trips.
- Pungent foods: Try to avoid packing strong-smelling snacks like pickled foods, fish, hard-boiled eggs and stinky cheeses. Strong smells may trigger nausea and motion sickness for some people, so avoiding overly pungent foods is more considerate to those around you.
- Messy foods: Juicy, sticky and powdered treats that require lots of napkins are likely to make a mess and create an unwanted hassle. It’s best to pick something that won’t get all over your clothes and hands.
- Foods that require preparation: If you’re packing a sandwich, for instance, it’s best to prepare it at home beforehand. As you can likely imagine, bringing the individual ingredients and attempting to make your sandwich on the bus would be rather challenging with minimal space to prepare it on.
- Foods that require utensils: Anything that requires a fork, spoon, knife or table is usually more difficult to eat on a moving bus. It’s better to choose snacks you can eat with your hands instead.
Packing Your Bus Trip Snacks
How you pack your snacks is another important consideration. For instance, disposable bags and containers allow for more storage room in your bag. They’re a convenient choice as long as you don’t mind a little extra trash to throw away. A lunch box with multiple compartments is a handy way to store snacks like a sandwich, chips, apple slices and a cookie, but it may take up a little more bag space.
Snacks that come pre-packaged, like granola bars, trail mix packets and mini bags of chips, are easy to pack and eat on the road. These snacks also save you those few minutes of having to box or bag them yourself. But ultimately, you should pack your snacks in a way that’s most accessible, easy to eat and convenient for you.
16 Easy-to-Eat Snacks on a Charter Bus
So, what snacks are good for bus travel? The best foods for road trips are typically small, mess-free, easy to eat and have little to no odor. With these qualities in mind, here’s our list of top snacks to pack on a bus!
1. Granola or Protein Bars
One of the easiest snacks to pack for a bus ride is a granola bar, protein bar or breakfast bar. They’re quick, convenient and will hardly take up any room in your bag. As a bonus, these bars provide a rich boost of protein and energy.
For crunchy, flavorful and individually wrapped snacks you can easily store in your bag or pocket, grab two or three of these for the road, and you’ll have a quick energy fix. Try to choose options that aren’t too crunchy and crumbly — you’ll have a better chance of enjoying a mess-free snack.
2. Raw Vegetables
Raw veggies like cucumber slices, broccoli, baby carrots, celery and cherry tomatoes can be fantastic choices for bus rides, as they’re highly portable and easy to pack and eat. They’re loaded with nutrients and are easily handheld and mess-free options that won’t give you a stomach ache. Veggies can stay fresh for up to several hours, even at room temperature.
Some raw vegetables do come pre-sliced and packaged in grocery stores, but you can cut and pack them yourself in a plastic bag or container. If you’re looking for an ultra-healthy snack to bring on the bus — and a salad is a little too much hassle for your liking — raw vegetables are an excellent alternative.
3. Dried Fruit
Just like vegetables, dried fruit is another healthy, compact and mess-free option for any bus ride. While fresh fruit is sweet and delicious, it can also be sticky and juicy, making it a less ideal option for motorcoach travel.
Dried fruits like apricots, mangos, prunes, apples and raisins are a great alternative. They’re tasty and easy to pack in a bag, and you also won’t have to worry about any juices dripping.
4. Bottled Beverages
A bottled beverage like water or juice is ideal for long bus rides. It will hydrate you throughout the trip and has a cap you can easily take on and off. This makes it easy to store in your bag for later if you don’t finish it.
Beverages with pop tabs, on the other hand, are more inconvenient for road trips. They aren’t resealable and can’t be packed back into a bag once opened.
Besides keeping you hydrated, drinking water — or sometimes even juice — can help prevent nausea and lethargy.
5. Trail Mix
Trail mix often comes in a resealable bag, making it a convenient snack to pack and enjoy on the go. It also contains a variety of nutritious ingredients like nuts and dried fruit. Trail mix with a bit of chocolate allows for a nice balance of sweet and savory while adding an extra taste of fun. Slip a packet or two of trail mix into your bag before embarking on the road, or make your own to enjoy your favorite mix.
6. Pre-Made Sandwiches
As long as the ingredients don’t ooze out of the sides, individually boxed or wrapped sandwiches can make for fairly neat on-the-go meals. As mentioned earlier, it’s best to prepare the sandwich at home so you won’t have to worry about doing this on the road.
Consider making and wrapping a few peanut butter and banana sandwiches on whole wheat to munch on during your trip. These are rich in healthy fat and proteins that can help keep you full.
Sandwiches with cold deli meats, cheese, lettuce and tomato are also tasty options, but they don’t always stay fresh as long. Plus, these ingredients are notorious for falling out of your sandwich easily, potentially resulting in a messy bus ride.
7. Dry Cereal
While trying to eat a bowl of cereal and milk with a spoon on the bus is a recipe for disaster, a bag or airtight container of dry cereal makes for a tasty, mess-free snack. Better yet, you can mix in multiple kinds of your favorite cereal for an extra fun treat. Dry cereal is an easy, portable snack to munch on during a long bus ride.
Crackers are an easy go-to snack for extended bus rides. Whether rice cakes, saltines or even animal crackers, consider packing a bag of your favorite crackers to satisfy your snacky cravings.
Saltine crackers are an especially nutritious choice since they are low in calories and fat. They’re also light on the stomach and can help combat nausea, which is something to consider if you’re prone to motion sickness during road trips.
If you don’t mind a little extra salt and calories, chips can be another good snack to tie you over until your next meal. There are also many options to choose from — classic potato, sour cream and onion, salt and vinegar, barbecue and cheddar, to name a few.
If you’re trying to steer away from all those calories, you can opt for a healthier chip option instead, like baked potato chips, sweet potato, zucchini, carrot or even taro chips. Just remember to store them in a Ziploc bag or airtight container to help them last longer.
Whether you purchase it pre-made or pop some in the microwave the night before your trip, popcorn is another easy and nutritious road trip snack that’s light on the stomach.
Classic popcorn or kettle corn is always a winner, but you can always pack some other types if you’d like, from white cheddar to caramel or chocolate. Bear in mind, however, that these may give you sticky fingers during the bus ride — it may help to have a packet of wipes handy or to opt for plainer flavors.
Hard pretzels are small, crunchy and easy to eat by the handful. You’ll find them at most grocery and convenience stores, making them a simple snack choice to pack and take with you on a bus ride. Hard pretzels are also moderately low in calories and fat, as well as rich in fiber. They also contain some other nutrients like vitamin B, iron and zinc.
If you’re watching your sodium intake, be mindful of the amount of salt in the pretzels you choose. Healthier options, like unsalted and whole wheat brands, are considerably lower in sodium.
12. Beef Jerky
Surprisingly low in fat and carbs, high in protein and rich in minerals like zinc and iron, beef jerky is another great snack choice to get you through a lengthy trip.
What’s more, beef jerky is highly portable — since it often comes in a resealable bag — and has a long shelf life. These qualities make it an excellent option for traveling when you have limited access to fresh food and need a good protein fix.
Keep in mind, however, that while beef jerky is a relatively nutritious snack, you should enjoy it in moderation since it’s highly processed and loaded with sodium.
13. Bite-Size Muffins
Mini muffins, whether homemade or bought in a grocery store or bakery, are a sweet and delicious treat to enjoy on a bus ride. Pack some bite-size muffins in your favorite flavors — like chocolate chip, pumpkin, cranberry or blueberry — and pop some into your bag for your road trip. Mini varieties are easy to munch on without the crumbs their larger counterparts create, making them a less messy road trip snack.
Here’s another tip — mini muffins are a huge crowd-pleaser, so you might want to eat them discreetly if you don’t plan on sharing them with other passengers!
14. Mixed Nuts
Plant-based protein can keep you feeling full for a while. Certain nuts like walnuts, peanuts, cashews and pistachios happen to be loaded with healthy proteins, making them another nutritious and fulfilling snack for your trip.
These simple snacks also contain healthy fats like fiber and omega-3s. They’re tasty even when unsalted. Just remember to bring pre-shelled nuts, as you don’t want to risk making a mess by peeling shells on the bus.
15. Turkey Roll-Ups
If you enjoy turkey sandwiches but don’t want to risk ingredients falling onto your lap during the ride, turkey roll-ups can be a delicious alternative. A turkey roll-up is a tasty and nutritious high-protein snack for bus rides. It consists of vegetables and cheese wrapped inside slices of turkey breast. You can also include a soft tortilla outer layer if you’d like.
This fun snack conveniently secures all of your ingredients into a tight, compact roll, reducing the chance of anything falling out. You can make turkey roll-ups by laying a tortilla and a few slices of turkey breast on a plate, then spreading each one with a thin layer of a dressing or condiment of your choice, like cream cheese, ranch or honey mustard.
Place some lettuce and cheese slices over the turkey, then roll it all gently but tightly into a wrap. Cut your wrap into small, bite-size pieces and pack them into a container so you have an easy snack to enjoy on the bus. This snack provides a nice protein boost from the cheese and turkey, as well as additional vitamins and minerals from the lettuce. Just be sure to eat it early on in the bus trip — deli meat and most cheeses aren’t good to eat after two hours unrefrigerated.
16. Fruit Snacks
Finally, fruit snacks are a great choice if you’re craving something sweet during your bus ride. They usually come in small, individual packets, making them easy to toss into your bag for the road. Keep in mind that fruit snacks can be high in sugar and calories, so it’s best to enjoy them in moderation and limit yourself to one or two packs.
What’s your favorite snack to munch on during long road trips? Let us know in the comments!
Ride Comfortably With Arrow Stage Lines
Besides having plenty of snacks for the road, choosing a quality and reliable motorcoach company helps you have a comfortable ride. At Arrow Stage Lines, we’re devoted to providing our customers with timely performance, sustainable transportation and world-class service.
We cater to a wide variety of functions and industries, from athletics to weddings, meetings and conventions. Whatever your destination and transportation needs, we’re here to serve you. So sit back, grab your favorite road trip snacks and enjoy a comfortable charter bus ride with Arrow Stage Lines. Get a quick quote on our website today!