Wherever we go in the world, we leave a carbon footprint. We also leave behind a lot of waste and trash...that is if we aren’t mindful. This guide was created based off personal experience while traveling and seeing first-hand how our environment is hurting, and the ways in which our habits are to blame. Often times we’re oblivious to the damage not only already all around us but that we cause ourselves. So to help curb that this guide encompasses some helpful tips and alternatives you can utilize to decrease your negative impact on this planet when traveling and encourage others to do the same. Let’s keep our beautiful spaces healthy for future generations to enjoy after us
BEFORE THE TRIP
Consider Local Travel Options
- Going somewhere accessible by trains, bus, or via carpool produces up to 50% fewer greenhouse gas emissions and helps stimulate the local economy.
Purchase Carbon Offsets
- If you’re flying, opt to fly non-stop when possible, and buy carbon offsets(available through some airlines(ex: Delta)you can also buy them from alternative organizations (ex: Cooleffect.org).
Reusable Water Bottle
- Saves you money and saves the environment because 1 million plastic water bottles are purchased every MINUTE, and most of them don’t get recycled.
- Barely take up any space in your bag and can make a big difference when you’re eating out at places that only use plastic cutlery or when ordering takeout.
Silicone Travel Containers
Instead of buying new travel sized toiletries or individually wrapped snacks each time you travel, refill reusable contain
ers with products and food you already have
Tote Bags or Sacs
- Think about how many store bags you use when shopping. These will allow you to shop plastic and paper bag free.
Reusable Food Containers
- Save money on your trip by doing meal prep at your hotel or Airbnb and carry it on the go (ex: beach, hike). This way you avoid styrofoam & plastic takeout containers from restaurants plus maximize your budget.
Reusable Sanitary Cup (for the ladies)
- These triumph over disposable tampons and pads because the latter often contain plastic & other synthetic materials that can harm the environment. Cups create less waste in landfills and save you money over time.
BRING A CONSCIOUS ATTITUDE
- Ex: be mindful of how much water you’re using in the shower, remember to shut off the faucet while brushing, walk instead of Ubering if you can, and turn off lights & AC when you leave a room.
Lastly, treat your surrounding environment with respect. Bonus points if you take some time to volunteer or pick up trash during your travels.
- Travel to places that need economic or social support
- Shop local and opt for products with minimal packaging
- Go paperless by using digital boarding passes/hotel reservations for check in, and decline paper receipts from establishments when you can.
- Check ingredients of products like sunscreen before entering the ocean where chemicals pose a dangerous threat to the fragile ecosystems.
- Consider bringing all-in-one products like Dr. Bronner’s soap = biodegradable and can be used to wash your body, hair, dishes and clothing.
- Invest in quality and handmade souvenirs that support the local economy instead of cheap trinkets.
- Remember to tell restaurants you have your own utensils & straw, otherwise you’ll get stuck with the plastic ones.
SUSTAINABLE BRANDS - FOR YOUR TRAVEL NEEDS
- Better Basics: reusable containers, grocery bags and home goods
- Viv: zero waste and biodegradable menstrual products
- Bedestan: sustainably made Turkish towels and robes
- Last Swab: endlessly reusable cotton swabs
- Stasher: endlessly reusable bags
- Torrain: durable, lightweight and water resistant bags made out of recycled materials
- ThredUp: inexpensive sustainable fashion
- To Go Ware: affordable bamboo utensils