Did you know that the smallest changes you make are often the most important?
- Turn everything off at home
First things first: before leaving the house, make sure that you’ve not only turned off all lights, but unplugged electronics and appliances. (If not, they will actually continue to use power while you’re away!)
- Get a reusable water bottle
Did you know that, across the world, people consume one million plastic bottled beverages every minute? That’s a lot of wasted packaging, but you can help the cause by packing a reusable water bottle. Some varieties even include a steri-pen or filter in case you are traveling to a location where the drinking water may not be ideal.
- Use mobile tickets
The night before your trip, check into your flight and download your mobile ticket. Showing the barcode on your cell phone at the airport check-in will be much faster and easier than printing a paper copy of your ticket.
- Get outside and explore
You’ve finally made it to your destination! It may be tempting to crawl in bed and turn on the TV, but it’s even better to get outside and try something new. Ask your guide about popular recreational activities with a low carbon footprint. Whether it’s hiking through the Costa Rican rainforest, snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef, or witnessing the beauty of Iceland’s Northern Lights–getting outside is the best part of travel.
- Eat local
Craving something fresh to enjoy after a long flight? Enjoy dishes made from locally grown produce. Support local farmers’ markets by eating their delicious fruits and vegetables, and avoiding those which were shipped overseas. Unsure if what you’re eating is the real deal? Many chefs and restaurant owners are more than happy to discuss the source and sustainability of their ingredients.
- Take public transportation
Public transportation methods like buses, trains and shuttles have a reduced environmental impact and are usually the safest option when exploring a foreign country. Another bonus is that public transportation is much easier on the wallet than taxi rides, meaning you can splurge on a few scoops of gelato or some artisan-crafted souvenirs to bring home!
- Choose reusable containers
Reusable shampoo bottles and soap containers are often cheaper than “travel size” goods, reduce plastic waste, and reduce the chance of spills and leaks in your luggage.
- Purchase sustainable accessories
If you really want to go the extra mile in your “green efforts”, consider purchasing sustainable travel accessories made from recycled goods. The shopper’s guilt is totally nonexistent here. There are so many companies that truly care about the environment and provide employment and education opportunities to those in need. Feel great about your purchases of sunglasses, backpacks, water bottles, wallets, tote bags, and more. You can look great and save the planet at the same time.