Being a backpacker I always have very limited space to carry things so I always find ways to keep my luggage light. Eventually, when I started travelling I didn’t even know what it meant by eco-friendly travelling. I was extremely illiterate about the whole idea regarding eco-friendly travel. and I have no shame to admit that I was irresponsible towards our environment.
I am glad things have changed
so today I am going to talk about how I made my travel more eco-friendly
The first step to change this is to get used to having a bag on you at all times. Below are a few items I have switched to, and you will need in order to reduce the amount of trash you make.
- I started using a biodegradable bamboo toothbrush. We now have the option of switching to a bamboo toothbrush. Considering the amount of pollution caused by plastic toothbrushes, it is necessary. Plastic brushes are non-recyclable and last for about 400 years in landfills. http://bit.do/smiling-shark-toothbrush
- I carry a reusable cotton cloth/ handkerchief rather than using tissue papers or wet wipes. We need to go into the past old habits of carrying a handkerchief. Wipes are a blend of cotton and plastic, chances are they will end up in landfills. Trees need to be cut for making one-time use tissues.
- Why waste resources? Switch to reusables. I carry my own cutleries and have even switched to Steel straw – It is important to have your reusable cutlery with you whenever you go out. Tell them not to include your drinks with a straw. Include your cutlery with a metal straw and a cleaning brush. https://amzn.to/35B3BL8 Straws are especially handy when having a mocktail/cocktail or mojito when you don’t want any unwanted mint leaves in your mouth.
- If you have a set of travel cutlery you’re good to go or simply carry a spoon or a fork from home in a pouch. Also, it’s good to carry a small, empty reusable container to get your extra food at restaurants or even to get food on the go. Time for ice cream? Get it in a cone, zero waste.
- I carry my own bottle so that I don’t have to use plastic bottles. Carry your own reusable bottle everywhere, also have a reusable coffee mug if you love having coffee whenever you go out. Refill your mini bottle and use it mainly for short travels. Could be small, best is to keep it light, something you will not mind carrying the weight of. You can request your bottle to be refilled at the restaurants you visit.
- Bamboo earbuds – cleaning ears don’t have to dirty the environment, by switching to bamboo earbuds that can be easily composted, you have a better choice.
- Reducing the amount of trash you leave is important. Many travellers don’t know about, sometimes because they are assured that trash is taken care of by the authorities of hotels they are staying in. Well, many hotels and restaurants dump garbage in the waterways or the sea. All one-time use plastics are taken care of by dumping it out of sight in the environment because most of the plastic we use is non-recyclable. Only 9% of the plastics we use are recyclable.
- Those one-time paper cups and bowls are not fully paper, they are lined with plastic which makes them non-biodegradable and non-recyclable.
- Your mode of transport. – Did you know aviation contributes to 5% of the global carbon emissions?
- Luxury air travel requires more space, that would increase your carbon footprint 3-4 times. Whereas train travel reduces the carbon footprint by a lot, it can also transport many passengers at a time, if the train is electric carbon footprint is reduced even further depending on how the electricity is generated. It’s also wise to use public transport whenever possible.
- Female travellers can be much more relaxed when on periods without worrying about changing pads/tampons, by using a menstrual cup. It’s safer for longer hours. Plus it can be re-used for 5 years or more. You can run, swim without any discomfort and it’s the most convenient option available! Using a biodegradable pad with you is also much better than the plastic ones that live up-to 500 years at landfills, where they would release methane and leach toxins into the environment.
- An extra cotton bag won’t hurt. Carry an extra folded reusable cotton bag in your handbag/backpack/purse for unexpected purchases.
A little extra effort is needed and it will reduce your personal carbon footprint, also you’re efforts will inspire others. Although imperfection is okay. It’s just 1 plastic bottle/bag/straw said 7 billion people. Our planet is our only home, take care of it.