10 Rules for Sustainable and Green Travelling

Many people try to reduce the impact on the environment in their daily lives. We tell you what rules are best to follow when traveling to relax without harming nature.

Reduce your luggage

Simple arithmetic: the higher the take-off weight of the aircraft, the higher the energy consumption, i.e. fuel. And its burning leads to an increase in greenhouse gases. Thus, each passenger, by choosing between a heavy suitcase or a light backpack, affects the environment to a certain extent. On vacation, you can let your skin rest from makeup and your feet from high heels. Plus, you’re more likely to walk a lot than spend your days reading.

sustainable green travelling
© LAIMANNUNG/UNSPLASH

Buy a reusable case

Packing luggage with stretch film helps prevent accidental opening of the suitcase and loss of things, protects it from scratches and dirt. Each flight consumes kilometers of polyethylene, which is then discarded. A good alternative to plastic is a reusable case. It will also wrap the luggage well and, upon arrival, can be washed in a typewriter, dried and reused.

Choose eco-friendly transport

If possible, it is better to give preference to cars and trains. When traveling by car, take other travelers with you, with whom you can arrange in advance in the forums. Airlines also try to minimize the carbon footprint, for this some airlines add to the main fare the amount of compensation. This money is used to plant trees and other green projects. Try to walk more, rent bikes and scooters and master public transportation. Electric buses already operate in some European cities.

Take the zero-waste kit

Pack the things you use every day: a pocket shopping bag, a cloth bag, a reusable thermal cup, a straw, cutlery, a lunch box and a water bottle. This will not only help you get rid of disposable plastic, but also save money: instead of buying several bottles of water a day, you can pour it out at a hotel and restaurant or in drinking fountains.

sustainable green travelling
© ANNA OLIINYK/UNSPLASH

Support local producers

Familiarize yourself in advance with the certification system in the field of tourism. Use the services of local residents, give preference to guesthouses and small hotels. In this way, you will support the country’s economy by helping the development of the regions. The same applies to food: locally grown vegetables and fruits do not need to be transported additionally. By the way, seasonal foods are healthier no matter where you are.

Buy products without packaging

When traveling, it doesn’t make sense to buy food like at home. In addition, there is the opportunity to get a new culinary experience. Vegetables and fruits can be bought individually or in a bag, and prepared meals can be stored in a lunch box. Pay attention to stores that have fundamentally abandoned plastic packaging; you can find them on the following websites: bepakt.com (Europe) and app.zerowastehome.com (Canada and USA).

Minimize the hotel cost

By regulation, it is customary in most hotels to clean daily. If you spend less than three days in the hotel, hang a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door handle. This will avoid throwing away incomplete garbage bags, changing and washing clothes unnecessarily. If you have brought your usual cosmetics with you, it is best to leave the container with soap and disposable shampoos intact.

Don’t use the laundry room

This advice also applies to those who stay in the hotel for a short period of time or wash clothes only a couple of things.The fact is that most of the time the hotels erase each order separately.That is, for a pair of shorts and two T-shirts, you will need from 40 to 80 liters of water. At home, most of us try to load the machine with the maximum amount of things before we start washing. This rule should also be followed when traveling.

sustainable green travelling
© NIK MACMILLAN/UNSPLASH

Do not throw away maps and brochures

The local guide, at best, is left on the bedside table in the hotel room, at worst, it is dumped on the city streets. Meanwhile, the production of printing materials is detrimental to the environment. While demand creates supply, thousands of trees die for the entertainment of tourists for a week. Try to pass on unnecessary information brochures to those who will need them. Give maps of the area to tourists who have just arrived at the hotel or take them home to give to friends who have not yet been to this country.

Buy the right souvenirs

Fridge magnets are a cheap, obvious and useless souvenir. Most of them are made of plastic (be prepared to put plastic to shame). It is much more interesting to touch the culture of the country you have come to. Visit flea markets, buy folk art products: jewelry, dishes, decorative items. These things are able to convey the atmosphere, so they will take their rightful place in the homes of friends and relatives.

Rules for the eco-traveller

Experts of the International Ecotourism Society have formulated rules that will help reduce the negative impact on the environment which you temporarily visit:

  • minimize physical, social, behavioral, and psychological consequences;
  • raise environmental and cultural awareness;
  • create financial benefits for the private sector;
  • respect the local people and their customs;
  • leave only footprints, take only photos;
  • follow the well-trodden paths;
  • travel with companies that support ecotourism.

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