Whether by train, plane, or automobile, traveling is one of the things we do that can have the largest environmental impact. However, there are ways to lessen the impact of our trips. The biggest thing we can do is to avoid major travel via airplane and cars but we know that’s not always possible, and travel can be extremely beneficial to your mental health and world view. Therefore, the best ways we can reduce our impact during travel involves our choices while we travel.
Make travel good for you and the environment by…
- Choosing the lowest impact travel option (walking/biking instead of driving, driving instead of flying, or taking public transport if available)
- Offsetting your carbon emissions from travel
- Bringing a reusable water bottle and avoiding bottled water unless necessary
- Purchasing souvenirs and food from local, family owned stores
- Bringing reusable bags for those souvenirs too!
- Packing light. If your trip is two weeks or less, try bringing everything in a carry on
- Packing your own package free snacks for the trip to and from
- Bringing your own toiletries. Check out these body products in tiny aluminum containers
- Bringing small containers, reusable silverware, and cloth napkins for takeout and leftovers
- Googling places to compost your waste, recycle certain items, or places that offer zero/low waste options
Alane Ertel is a graduate from the MPH program at the University of North Florida, and was an Intern at their Environmental Center during the creation of this project. Alane’s goal in creating this project is to increase awareness of environmental issues, spread zero/low waste practices, and improve environmental and human health by utilizing her passions for the environment and for creating a healthier society.