Our Top 5 Eco-Friendly Travel Tips for Earth Day
Travel provides an unparalleled opportunity to explore the world’s most remarkable ecosystems and natural treasures. Yet it’s no secret that travel can be a burden on the environment and the wild places we visit. But this doesn’t have to be the case.
There are plenty of ways that you can transform your impact on the planet and green your travels. In fact, when tourism is done in a conscientious manner, it has the power to create benefits for nature and wildlife. In honor of this coming Earth Day, we’re dishing up our top five tips for more eco-friendly travel.
Read on for a quick dose of inspiration that will help you plan more eco conscious trips.
1. Reduce plastic waste
When we travel we tend to use more disposable items than when we are at home. On top of this, many destinations don’t have sufficient recycling systems in place to deal with the influx of plastic. This can lead to overflowing landfills and plastic litter ending up on beaches and other fragile ecosystems.
One of the easiest ways to reduce your plastic consumption when you travel is by bringing along a reusable water bottle. For destinations with questionable drinking water, be sure to pack a bottle with a high quality purifier.
When you travel, make a conscious effort to become more aware of your impact. Once you start paying attention to the types of plastics you use, you’ll start realizing other opportunities to cut down your consumption.
2. Rethink your mode of transportation
Transport-related emissions account for nearly half of global tourism emissions and are projected to increase over the next decade.
To mitigate your travel carbon footprint, choose the most fuel efficient modes of transport to reach your destination, and to explore it while you’re there. This could mean opting for trains instead of planes or hopping on a bike to explore your destination. This blog post goes into more detail about reducing transport emissions and choosing fuel-efficient modes of travel.
3. Offset any unavoidable travel emissions
For those travel-related carbon emissions that you can’t reduce, offset them to contribute to impactful climate projects.
The theme of this Earth Day is “Invest in Our Planet.” When you offset carbon, you are doing exactly this. Carbon offsets help fund projects that protect threatened forests, regenerate degraded ecosystems, and accelerate the clean energy transition. By conserving critical wildlife habitats, many carbon offset projects also prevent biodiversity loss and safeguard endangered wildlife species.
Our new carbon footprint calculator makes it easy to purchase carbon offsets. This Earth Day, invest in the planet by balancing out your emissions from flights, cruises, cars, and more.
4. Try local vegetarian dishes
This tip is a win-win for both local communities and the environment.
By trying more dishes that are made with locally grown fruits and veggies, you’ll benefit local farmers and economies. At the same time you’ll minimize the environmental footprint associated with both meat-heavy and imported foods.
Whether you’re a vegetarian or just want to try something different, there are plenty of plant-based dishes around the world that are sure to make you drool.
5. Respect the wildlife you see
From diving with manta rays to spotting cheetahs on a safari, travel allows us to see some of the most fascinating animals around the world. Unfortunately, not all wildlife experiences are inherently eco-friendly.
Before participating in wildlife tourism, do some research to ensure the experience is ethical and cruelty free. And when you visit natural ecosystems, be sure to keep your distance and minimize disturbances to the animals that you see.
Looking for inspiration? Check out our blog post on ways to protect marine wildlife.
We know that it’s not just individual traveler’s actions that have an impact on the planet. That’s why our bonus tip is to Choose travel companies that care about the environment.
Seek out companies that are adopting eco-friendly practices. This could mean encouraging responsible wildlife interactions, providing environmental education, conserving their natural surroundings, and taking measures to reduce their waste, water, and energy use. By asking companies about their environmental initiatives and supporting those that are taking action, you can help drive the demand for more sustainable business practices.
We’ve shared our tips, now we want to hear yours! What is your top tip for environmentally conscious travel? In honor of Earth Day, share your #EarthFriendlyTravel tip on social media and tag us so we see.