Lots of vegans can relate to the experience of waiting an exorbitant amount of time waiting in line for food at VegFests.
In fact, at Texas VegFest in Austin, I noticed a ton of long lines to each of my favorite Austin-based establishments. I estimated it’d take several hours to get food from each.
Was it even worth it to come to VegFest for the food? I decided to find out how much faster I could travel to each restaurant’s Austin location by car, including from our hotel.
In fact, waiting in line at VegFest was five times slower than driving directly to the restaurants.
For those without a car, it would take a bit longer with public transit.
It is so much slower to wait in line, Google estimates I’d be able to walk to each restaurant, several miles, in about the same time I would wait in line.
Does the cost of driving to restaurants outweigh the waiting time at VegFest?
Despite driving to the veg restaurants directly saving a ton of time, there is an embedded gasoline cost to drive to each of the restaurants.
However, vendors at VegFest nearly always hike up their prices a dollar or two from their normal prices.
Compared to the driving cost of going to these restaurants directly, it would be five times as expensive to buy the same food at the increased VegFest prices.
Even in the worst case scenario, just going to each restaurant directly is more time and cost effective.
And unfortunately, the Texas VegFest centers around food, not necessarily fostering community building, rendering going there in the first place a little bit futile.
Note: This project is a thought experiment. A lot of the numbers are estimated and is not meant to be an accurate representation of real cost or line wait time at Texas VegFest.