Airline Food Review: Vietnam Airline, SGN-Yangon route

Day 54,  Asia, January – March, 2015
Myanmar Day 1, Enroute to Yangoon, Myanmar from SGN, Vietnam

Vietnam airline is the national carrier of Vietnam. This is a review for my international flight with Vietnam Airline from SGN-Yangoon, Mynamar last year (2015). I know….as you notice, I am writing from SGN, Vietnam right now, in the mid of my (March-May 2016) vacation, a year later. But I figured I share my opinion to give back to the backpacking community since I’ve benefited from the many tips contributed by other backpackers during my trip research in the blog-sphere.

This is my meal from Vietnam to Yangoon, Mynamar in 2015. As you can see in the overview, the meal consisted of a salad, a hot entrée, a dinner roll and a serving of some fresh fruits.

Vietnam Airline Food Review
Vietnam Airline Food Review

This is what my hot entrée looks like. To be honest, it’s been a year since I took this picture and the meal was so mediocre that I had no collection if the hot entrée included any protein or just potato.

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If my memory served me correctly, this was the only meal option given during our flight. What I don’t get is, why are they not proud of their cuisine/heritage that they ended up serving us a Western meal. Vietnam have many wonderful dishes that I know would pleased both Western and non Western flying customers.

I guess when you’re given only one choice, you either take this or leave it. This was a noon departure flight so it’s a lunch meal. Granted, this is a fairly short international flight, under 3 hours I believed so I don’t expect an elaborate meal like my favorite ANA carrier. BUT…..sometimes, it’s the little details that make or break the deal for me.

I’m from the States so a Western meal is not an issue for me. The salad came with a decent vinaigrette dressing. The fresh fruits portion came with a mixture of tropical fruits which is appropriate for the area. The dinner roll was cold and seems a little stale comparing to ANA toasty rolls in a basket. But the deal breaker of this meal for me is the butter accompanying the dinner roll. The butter package is bilingual in both Vietnamese and English and they both said “butter”. Believe me, that was no butter. It was the nasty margarine which is now “almost banned” in the US for health reason and chemical laden ingredients.

As I didn’t like my hot entrée, I was hoping to rely on the dinner roll and butter to keep my appetite in check until we landed in Yangon. That was a lost hope!

The funny thing is it’s been over a year since I took this trip and I can’t recalled many of the details but I sure can recall the disappointment in taste with both the so-called butter and the hot entrée.  In my opinion, for what we paid for the airfare, we should have at least deserved to have real butter with our dinner roll, lol. If any of the Vietnam airline PR folks are reading this article, then please consider offering alternative option(s)  or have Vietnamese food option would be nice.

I am heading to Bali in a couple of days and I’m looking forward to  my pre-order in flight Indonesian Nasi Campa or Indo food, in general. As a national carrier, I think there is no other more perfect opportunity to show case a country’s charm, it’s culture via food/cuisine. Vietnamese food is trending as a popular food in the culinary domain yet Vietnam airline failed to capture this chance at the time of my flying. Too bad, it would have been nice to munch on goi? cuon’ (spring/salad rolls) which is nice with the scorching heat during the dry season of Vietnam. Or better yet, a serving of banh’ mi` entree with Vietnam’s various regional condiments/salad side dish than the sad Western meal.

 

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