Although the choice of where to dine at UK airports has drastically improved over recent years many travellers still head to the nearest fast food restaurant when they arrive through security, undoing all the good work from the previous weeks’ “bikini diet”. However, new research from flight comparison site Skyscanner has highlighted that fast food restaurants are by far the worst culprits with many, seemingly healthier, choices also hiding huge calorific contents.
Burger and chips – 1700 calories
One of the most calorific meals available at the airport is the double burger meal from O’Neills which can be found at several UK airports including Heathrow and Stansted. The meal contains two burger patties and a portion of chips, and weighs in at a whopping 1700 calories, just 300 shy of the recommended daily intake for women.
Cornish Pasty – 1040 calories
A large traditional steak pasty from the West Cornwall Pasty Company, which has outlets at Edinburgh and Gatwick airport rail terminal, may not seem like an especially unhealthy choice but it actually contains a whopping 1040 kcal, more calories than two Big Macs from Macdonalds!
Roast dinner – 877 calories
Passengers travelling through Birmingham, Heathrow, Edinburgh, Stansted or Gatwick airports on a Sunday might fancy a traditional roast dinner from Wetherspoons but beware, this tasty dish contains a whopping 877 kcal.
Cheese and ham sandwich – 708 calories
Think a sandwich is a lighter alternative to the many fast food options found at airports? Wrong. A ham, brie and cranberry baguette from EAT (Edinburgh, Gatwick, Heathrow and Glasgow airports) has a massive 708 calories while a cheeseburger and small fries from Macdonalds contains 183 calories fewer.
Coffee – 384 calories
It’s not just food that health conscious travellers need to watch; drinks can be surprisingly calorific too. A large crème brulee latte from Costa Coffee contains 384 kcal while chocoholics indulging their craving with hot chocolate ‘Milano’ with whipped cream from Caffe Nero will add 424 kcal to their daily intake.
Skyscanner’s travel expert, Sam Baldwin, comments, “It has often been reported that holidaymakers may spend without thinking at airports, often blowing the same amount of money on refreshments, magazines and shopping as they paid for
to their destination. This blasé attitude, or “holiday mentality” may also extend to passengers’ airport food choices as they opt for calorific dishes that they would never usually choose, without considering the ultimate cost to their waistline.”
However, there are many lower calorie options available at airports too. For instance travellers looking for a taste of Italy before boarding their
flights to Rome can enjoy a Leggera pizza from Pizza Express, containing just 500 kcal while the Chicken Gyoza and a miso soup from YO! Sushi (Edinburgh, Heathrow, Gatwick airports) have less than 200 calories in total.
Instead of a calorie-laden baguette, travellers watching their waistline can opt for a spicy crayfish noodle salad from EAT, containing only 402 kcal, or a chicken and pesto bloomer from Pret A Manger (outlets at Birmingham, London City, Heathrow and other airports) which will add just 466 kcal to their daily intake.