Sustainable travel is a term that can have different meanings depending on who you are talking to. What’s important to know is that it’s a set of conscious decisions made by a traveler to help protect the environment. Sustainable tourism doesn’t have to be complicated! In fact, it’s easier than you think. Here are some ideas how you can leave a smaller carbon footprint wherever your travels take you:
Book Eco-Friendly Lodging
Nowadays, there are plenty of sustainable hotels where you can book a room. According to FTN News, 68 percent of travelers seek eco-friendly hotels. Staying in these places not only helps you minimize your impact on the local ecosystem, but it can also be a unique experience for your vacation! If you’re traveling alone or in a small group, consider staying in a hostel or in other community-based housing like Airbnb. You don’t have to sacrifice any luxuries, as numerous sustainable accommodations uphold top-notch guest experiences and expectations. It’s an easy win-win: save money with responsible travel.
Take a Look at Your Travel Arrangements
Air travel contributes the most carbon emissions when you are traveling. If you’re able, choose to get to your destination by way of a train. The International Travel Forum reports that traveling by train generates up to 10 times fewer carbon emissions than an airplane. This mode of transportation also encourages “slow travel,” forcing the traveler to spend more time in one spot and travel to fewer spots throughout the course of their vacation. Plus, you’ll be able to see more of the countryside–an added bonus if you ask us! However, sometimes plane travel is unavoidable. If this is the case, research eco-friendly airlines that use sustainable aviation fuel, and fly direct when possible.
After you’ve arrived at your destination, take advantage of its public transportation or look into bike rentals to get around. Exploring around on foot will let you spend more time outdoors, just don’t forget to pack comfortable shoes! Depending on what your vacation agenda is, your travel arrangements may require you to drive from place to place. Make sure to look into car rentals companies that have hybrid-electric or fuel-efficient models to rent. A good website for figuring out the ways you can travel to and within a location is Rome2Rio.
Reduce Food and Plastic Waste
It’s important to limit your waste at all times, especially when on vacation. Continue to be part of the solution by saying no to single-use plastics! Manage your trash contribution by choosing not to use disposable items like straws, plastic water bottles, and bags. Before you leave home, double-check that you have packed both a reusable shopping bag and your HYDAWAY Bottle. These are just two easy eco-friendly travel solutions.
Support The Local Community
Want to go on a shopping spree? Choose to buy from shops that have a positive impact on the local economy. Even though you might be spending a little bit more on items, you’ll find and bring home unique souvenirs that preserve the local culture of the area you’re visiting. This also supports jobs for locals. When dining out, choose to eat at restaurants that use locally sourced ingredients, and head to farmers’ markets to buy produce grown nearby. These are both great opportunities to not only taste community favorites, but also chat with the locals.
Green travel is easy to do by following the sustainable travel tips we shared. Wherever your vacation takes you, remember to take good care of our Earth by reducing your environmental impact. Happy safe travels!