The sustainable travel movement is strong and growing and includes multiple organisations around the world that are seeking to educate people about how they can help. Many of the suggestions are simple and can be easily incorporated in your day to day travel lifestyle too. It’s important to know the ways to be a sustainable traveller, because many people that may take care of the environment when they’re at home, but forget when they go travelling. As a responsible traveller, you should be knowledgeable about your destination, seek awareness of the impact that your presence has on the local population and environment, and attempt to minimise negative impacts. Isn’t seeing new places the whole point of travelling? What happens when we destroy all that there is to see? Let’s be responsible and give the future generations a reason to travel. Here are ways in which you can be a more sustainable traveller:
It’s perhaps the most obvious of all the ways to be a sustainable traveller, but so many #people forget simple things like recycling when they’re away from home. You may have to work a bit harder to recycle, but do ask hotel staff about recycling bins, carry your own shopping bags, take a reusable coffee cup and water bottle, and pass your newspaper on to another traveller once you’ve finished with it.
Walking is free, it’s good for you, it’s fun when exploring somewhere new, and it doesn’t harm the environment at all. If you can walk somewhere when you’re on vacation, do it. It’s the best way to experience an area anyway.
If you can’t walk to where you want to go, then using public transport rather than a car is definitely one of the #best ways to be a sustainable traveller. Make use of what is specific to where you are, as public transport is often part of the experience. For example, if you go to London, you really need to experience the Tube.
Did you know that a whopping 6% of the world’s hydrocarbon consumption is for plastic beverage bottles? Don’t make this worse when you’re travelling.If tap water is safe where you are travelling, reduce your environmental impact abroad by avoiding bottled water and bring a reusable water bottle with you abroad.
Rather than heading to a chain grocery or department store (where more energy is used to ship food further distances), stop by the market or a street stand (and bring a reusable cloth bag for shopping). And it’s not always easy to find restaurants that serve organic food, but you can usually find some that buy the ingredients for their meals locally. Instead of buying juice in plastic bottles, buy some fresh-squeezed juice or simply eat fresh fruit. Have you read my post on eating like a local in Paraguay?
Stay in locally owned accommodations, eat with locals, and hire local guides. Usually, smaller equals better. Rent unique accommodations from local hosts in 190+ countries. Feel at home anywhere you go in the world with Airbnb.
There are plenty of things that you can do for fun that is also ways to be a sustainable traveller. These activities don’t involve releasing any carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, and many are also methods are transport that can get you places too. Pedal, hike, ski, paddle, row, skate, and anything else you may fancy.
Turn off lights, air conditioners, and heaters when you are not in the room.
And lastly, choose tour companies that have environmental policies
Companies such as G Adventures and International Expeditions have pages dedicated to sustainable travel and detail the steps they are taking to make sure their tours don’t have a negative effect on the environment.