When traveling it’s often difficult to think how to do it in an environmentally friendly way. There are actually quite a few things you can do, so here are some tips to help you out.
- Before leaving for your trip, remember to conserve at home. Turn off the lights, computers and appliances that will not be in use and make sure to tightly turn off all faucets to prevent waste of water.
- Consider offseting the carbon dioxide emissions created by your travel by investing in a carbon-reducing program that funds renewable energy, energy efficiency or reforestation projects. For more information about some of the programs available, visit www.carbonfund.org, www.sustainabletravelinternational.org, or www.climatecare.org.
- When you have reached your destination, explore your options for environmentally responsible local transportation. Look for opportunities to use public transit like buses or trains, rent a bicycle or even walk. If you need to rent a car, consider an environmentally-friendly compact or hybrid vehicle. Choose the smallest vehicle that can accommodate you as they are more fuel efficient.
- Research the availability of green hotels or ecolodges that have environmental sustainability as part of their mission. Search for green hotels, bed and breakfasts, resorts, motels, lodges or inns wherever you’re going.
- When you check-in to your hotel, ask them if they have recycling or eco-friendly programs that you can participate in. You can also:
- Turn off lights and air conditioning when you leave your room.
- Only get your sheets, towels and amenities changed when you really need too.
- Ask the hotel about their energy usage, such as bulbs and recycling. If enough people ask then they might take notice.
- Refill your own water bottles rather than using the ones provided.
- Take short showers rather than baths.
- Respect the local ecosystem while you are visiting. If you go hiking, do not stray from the designated trails. When visiting the seashore, do not disrupt local life forms such as corals, seashells or starfish. And, anywhere you visit, make sure to refrain from littering.
- Support the local community that you are visiting whenever possible. This can mean buying local instead of imported goods, or hiring a local guide who will be familiar with the region. Activities such as these help sustain and replenish the community economically while reinforcing its culture and identity.
- For more ideas pelase take a look at our Green Holidays article.
Please note: Part of these tips were originally sent to me to promote a website, but it no longer exists and I’ve deleted the email – so if this was you please let me know and I will happily give you credit.