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When travelling how do you find kosher stablishments -

I figured it would be interesting to see what sites people use to find kosher food while travelling - for me first choice is http://shamash.org/kosher/ - yes some of the date might be out of date but it does list what might have been a kosher establishment - also I look for the local federation/JCC website to see if they point to anything in the community - finally local kosher authority to see if they have a listing of kosher establishments -

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  1. This site, Google, and Shamash.

    2 Replies
    1. re: DeisCane

      the reason Shamash is out of date is because it's contributed by viewers.
      I would check Shamash and often find inaccurate or out of date information.
      I would submit a correction, and a week or two later it would get updated.
      the point being, Shamash is only as good as people are willing to help it.

      1. re: yitziekatz

        FYI - if you're affiliated with a company/organization that you mention while posting here, you need to reveal that affiliation.

    2. If you have an iPhone (Android support is coming, so I've been told), try the RustyBrick Kosher app. It will use your GPS to find the closest kosher establishments to you.


      1 Reply
      1. re: tamarw

        I have that App - I beleuve it is based off of the Shamash database - but I di like it

      2. Chabads are also a useful resource. In areas where they're the only local option, then they're the local option. In other areas they're a good resource.

        1. I think this board is the most efficient way of finding accurate information. I find the information on Shamash to be outdated a lot of the time. If it is not a place where I have friends or colleagues, I usually also visit the website of the local Orthodox synagogue or the local beit din and see what information they have, or I call the local rabbi. When I get to the place, I ask around. For Israel, e-luna is a good place to start but it is advertising based so it does not include everything. For France, www.123cacher.com is great. For the rest of Europe, www.jewisheurope.org is well maintained. I have the Get Kosher app, but I don't use it very often. Oh, and I like menupages.com for NYC but I have to go to the individual restaurants' websites to check certification. www.greatrestaurantsmag.com/KOSHER/ is also useful.

          1. I like Chowhound the best, people are very helpful! I also try to google local Rabbinical sites, such as CRC in Chicago or Vaad in Michigan, etc., to see what they list. Works pretty well for Miami too:)

            1. In the following order:
              Shamash, local Chabad website, Chowhound. With that, I'm always good to go. I have poked around on the rest and find them inadequate. Really, Shamash is a godsend and Chabad has always impressed me with the userfriendliness and uniformity of their sites. Chowhound is a great supplement full of little tidbits and straighttalk.

              1. I have found www.totallyjewishtravel.com to be very good as well as Chabad

                3 Replies
                1. re: sja

                  The listing on totally Jewish travel for my community has 5 listings for places that don't exist and no listing for a place that has been open for around 2 years. It also appears to be unable to track that small towns can be part of a larger metropolitan area. (Godaven.org has that same problem.)

                  1. re: cappucino

                    Chabad is hardly THE rabbi of each community. In tiny communities Chabad may be the only presence, in which case any kosher food is probably provided or supervised by chabad. But even for most small communities, there are probably some other rabbis/shuls. And if you're willing to accept a wider ranger of hashgachot, then a Chabad list may be missing options.

                    I'll just add one further suggestion that I'm shocked no one has mentioned, Google. It may take a little extra digging, and will often direct you back to the sites mentioned already, but Google really is the best way to find the community sites, small message boards, chabads, and newspaper reviews that can further direct a search.

                    1. re: avitrek

                      google puts you at chowhound quite often. as for chabad, you are absolutely correct, avit, they are the only game in town sometimes and that's worth a lot to me. As for the communities where they are not, they always list all kosher options. They do not discriminate by not listing the options they do not supervise. I find it particularly helpful that they describe the kinds of kosher foods that you may find at the local supermarkets and list which markets actually "play ball" kosherwise. The Hashgachot we are looking for are Orthodox (Glatt for the meat options) ones of all categories and the Chabad usually does not miss the Orthodox kashrut options in the cities we visit. We always use Shamash as our first source as they usually have it all especially in larger metro areas.

                  2. two additional tips:
                    1-search for your hotel or convention center on google maps
                    --use "search nearby" and type in "kosher"-
                    --this will bring up kosher establishments or supermarkets containing kosher items
                    --use websites to find addresses, phone #s, etc
                    2-use "search nearby" to type in "synagogue"
                    --go to synagogue websites and look for tips on local community, numbers for the local rabbi, etc

                    Finally, ALWAYS call any establishment before you go. Hours and the very of the existence of these places are very variable. After I do my internet search, I often plug these #s into my cell phone so I can call from the road.

                    1. Many Jewish communities have web sites. As do many shuls. Especially when traveling abroad, see if there is a city or country Jewish webpage. These are often excellent.

                      And American synagogues that get lots of tourists or newcomers often also have good web pages, with things like hotels near a minyan, where to buy groceries, etc.

                      1 Reply
                      1. In addition to those already listed the Religious Travelers forum on Flyertalk also has great info about kosher food while traveling -- http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/religi... (keep in mind religious does not necessarily mean Jewish religious but that is the vast majority of the posts there)