Travelling green is without a doubt a challenging goal. It requires more thought and care to begin with before it can become second nature to you.
Environmental awareness has rapidly grown over recent years, but there is still a long way to go.
If you want to become an ethical traveller but don’t know where to start, or you have an idea but feel like you need a little bit more inspiration, our travel packing list below will help you grow into the green traveller you aspire to be.
Eco Travel Checklist
We have compiled a list below of what you should consider whilst planning an eco-friendly holiday:
1. Choose a green hotel
Choosing to stay in a green hotel means that you are supporting a business that is working towards making a positive impact on the environment and local economy.
Green hotels can be hotels that use eco-friendly toiletries and cleaning products, have options to avoid washing towels daily, use locally sourced foods in their restaurants, and so on.
Even with just one eco-friendly option available at a hotel, it is still a step forward towards reducing the impact of environmental or economic issues. When you think about how many guests are staying at these hotels, it can really put into perspective how big the eco-friendly impact can be.
Take a look at the Kiwano approved green hotels here.
2. Choose a green tour company
If you’re using a tour company to plan a holiday, choosing a green tour company/tour guide may not have crossed your mind. However, choosing a green tour company is a great way to ensure that your money is going towards a business with good ethical practices.
Green tour companies often contribute to the community and take local social and political issues into account, so you can be certain that any activities you do with them are eco-sensitive.
All you need to do is a little bit of research for tour companies in your chosen destination, as most green tour companies will promote their ethical practices.
3. Walk, cycle, or use public transport
Reducing your carbon footprint where you can is a great way to become a green traveller. All vehicles cause pollution, but there are always ways to minimise it.
If you can, you should avoid flying where possible; for example, you could think about doing a road trip or using the train instead for long distances that aren’t out of reach by plane. However, sometimes avoiding planes is out of the question for your chosen destination.
Also, when you are at your destination, going out and about, you should opt for using public transport instead of hiring a car. You could even walk or cycle at times to minimise the environmental impact.
Using public transport, walking and cycling are also a great way to truly experience the culture of where you are and meet new people. As cliché as it sounds – it’s about the journey, not the destination.
4. Leave a light footprint
When you go on holiday, there are things you can do to leave a light footprint. This includes simple things such as; turning off light switches when they aren’t needed, taking shorter showers etc.
Leaving a light footprint is such an easy task that every traveller can do, it just requires a bit more thought on how to minimise the energy you’re using.
Some destinations may have scarce resources, so being aware of that is important so that you can act appropriately. However, leaving a light footprint should be done regardless of the destination’s resources.
5. Volunteer in the right places
Volunteering is a great way to help the local economy and give back to the communities that you’re staying in, even if it just feels like a small act of kindness. However, volunteering in certain communities or countries is a lot more popular than you may realise, and this has, and can, lead to volunteering scams.
Some people within the community may use the fact that it is a popular place for volunteers to donate money or their own hard work to them, so they set up their own pretend community ‘charity’. Consequently, genuine charities will lose out, meaning you won’t be helping the local economy and community.
The best practice to avoid these scams is to ensure you do your research before donating your time and money into these businesses.
Start Packing Your Eco Travel Break…
Becoming an eco-traveller takes time, and you need to be dedicated to making a change to help the environment. But, in the end, these challenges are well worth it to know that you have personally helped towards creating a greener future for travel.
Kiwano can help you towards the first step of becoming a green traveller, by providing a list of green accommodations for you to stay at and giving you further tips on how to stay green as a traveller.