Eco-friendly travel tips
The beautiful thing about being eco-friendly is that you can do it anywhere. Just because you're going out of town, it doesn't mean you have to abandon your earth-friendly practices. Living green is a mindset and that means you can incorporate your new found habits into all areas of your life. So the next time you go on vacation, keep these tips in mind and you'll be able to plan your very own eco-vacation.
1. Instead of printing out your directions from MapQuest or other directional site, have them sent to your cell phone
or PDA. Both MapQuest and HopStop will shoot you directions. HopStop will even send you New York City subway directions while you're trying to figure out which line to take. Just call 888-2-HOPSTOP and they'll send you a text message guiding you to your destination.
take the bus
2. Yes, flying somewhere is a lot faster, but it's also more harmful to the environment. Considering planes put out more carbon dioxide per person than any other form of transportation and they do it in the most damaging place possible - high up in the atmosphere, the next time you plan on going out of town, look at a bus schedule. It's cheaper, and considering how many people they haul at one time, it's the most greenhouse-gas efficient way to travel.
rules of flight
3. If you have to fly, then do it in an earth friendly manner. When booking your flight, fly direct, as all the worst carbon emissions are emitted during landings and take offs. Also, completely turn off your electronics during your flight. Don't just put them on standby, as they will still use up an exorbitant amount of energy.
research your hotel
4. When booking your stay, look for a green hotel. Find out which hotel is locally owned and operated; if they have an effective recycling program; if they have policies in place to reduce consumption, such as energy efficient lighting and low flow toilets; and find out if they contribute to the local community.
during your stay
5. When going out of town, keep in mind all the things you do at home and practice them in your hotel and around town.
- Keep your showers short
- Turn off the water while you're brushing your teeth
- Turn off the lights when you leave the room
- Reuse sheets and towels
- Bring your own toiletries and try to avoid using the prepackaged ones your hotel provides. If you forget something and must use the hotel's shampoo, bring what you don't use home with you and finish it off.
- Use public transportation, rent bikes or walk while sight-seeing.
- Don't purchase over packaged souvenirs.
turn every vacation into a green adventure
6. Just like in your day to day life, keeping your vacations eco-friendly doesn't have to be difficult. There are simple, basic thing you can do to reduce your carbon footprint around the world.