Summer means travel if you’re lucky. Each time we travel, we’re looking for ways to lessen our use of disposable goods – in other words, we look for sustainable elements in hotels, eateries, public transport, and shops we visit along the way.
This quest has led us to become fans of the website Traveling Greener. The blog features an extensive roundup of global travel tips and informative websites.
A recent feature explains some of the advantages of staying at a rental property rather than a hotel in order to travel more sustainably.
We’ve found this to be true as well. Obviously a rental villa or apartment uses less energy than a big hotel. Consider all the “less” involved: less waste, no daily changing of linens, no waste from an adjoining restaurant, and from our experience, they often stock the rooms with products and supplies that are made locally, which equals less fuel used in transporting goods.
A recent post on Traveling Greener features Lara Dunston, who blogs with Terence Carter about sustainable, local and experiential travel at Grantourismo. Lara offers her top 10 tips on traveling sustainably. A few of them:
- Apply the same eco-friendly practices you would at home: separate rubbish, re-use plastic bags, use lighting, electricity and water wisely.
- Travel to the destination by train or boat instead of plane; once you arrive use public transport, ride bikes, or walk everywhere.
- Shop at local markets, farmer’s markets, organic markets, and specialized stores, such as butchers, cheesemongers and fishmongers. If you must use a supermarket, check packaging carefully.
- Use small, local, independently-owned businesses to keep the money in the community, instead of big supermarkets, department stores and global franchises.
- Do eco-friendly activities: walking tours, nature-based activities, visit small museums, local parks and gardens, and use local, eco-certified, responsible travel companies.
Maybe you’ve never considered these sorts of travel options. If not, we hope you’ll explore some of these ideas. And knowing how careful some of our customers are about sustainability, we know some of you are experts on traveling that way too.
Please share some of your own tips and experiences with us!