By Soren Rivero
Travel can be such a hassle that, sometimes, we end up using more resources than we need. Many of us tend to overpack, indulge in single-use plastics, and rely excessively on cabs/Uber/Lyft.
Not only is this poor for the environment, but also for your wallet! Luckily, there’s plenty of preventive measures you can take to reduce your carbon footprint while traveling. Here are 8 quick tips to make your next trip more sustainable.
Take eco-friendly tours
Tours are a great way to learn and explore the world, but many of them come at the cost of hurting local communities, plants, and wildlife. Look for tours that are eco-friendly and consider booking those instead, to help make the ultimate eco-friendly travel itinerary.
Consider alternate transportation
You can easily save money and reduce the effects of gas pollution just by changing how you move around. Ditch that Uber ride (which can be quite pricey depending on where you go) and consider taking the bus or subway instead. You might even be able to get around on foot or bicycle in some places around the world. Just remember to stay safe!
Pack a reusable water bottle
Bring a reusable water bottle and, once you're through security, fill it up at filtered-water stations or buy a gallon jug to use along your adventure. This helps prevent wasting single-use water bottles. Score yourself some bonus eco-friendly travel points if you get a reusable water bottle with a built-in water filter!
Buy souvenirs from locally-owned shops
Tourism is a major source of income for dozens of countries around the world. However, buying souvenirs from chain-shops comes with a few extra prices. These typical souvenirs use unsustainable materials and packaging, and are often mass produced at the expense of poorly treated workers. Consider buying souvenirs from local artisans or shops, as these are often hand-made and more sustainable. Plus, you’re supporting small businesses!
Shop even more locally
Reducing your carbon footprint and saving money doesn’t stop at avoiding chain-souvenir shops. You can also shop for food and groceries at local markets to avoid plastic waste and savor farm-to-fork tastes. An easy way to mingle with locals and facilitate an eco-friendly travel plan.
Learn about the attractions you’re visiting
From the Colosseum to the Amazon Rainforest, the world is full of amazing attractions to visit, whether natural or man-made. However, some attractions (mostly man-made) are withering down the environment Think: zoos, aquariums, boat rides, and outdoor festivals. Try to look for more sustainable vacation activities such as hiking, visiting monuments, and walking through museums.
Even if you aren’t paying for the water bill at the hotel (at least directly), you can still play a role in reducing overconsumption of water. Turn the tap off when brushing your teeth, take shorter showers, and try to reuse towels or clothes if it's sanitary to do so.
Pick up after yourself
This one should go without saying… but please pick up after yourself and tidy up after you eat, drink, or open up packaging. This tip becomes especially handy if the place you’re visiting already has a problem with public littering.
These are just a few quick tips to make your next trip more sustainable. Click here if you’re interested in learning more about sustainable travel!