The Rise of the “Green Traveler” – and How to Become One Yourself

green traveler

 

 

We love traveling because it allows us the opportunity to escape the monotony of our everyday lives and inject it with some much-needed fun and adventure. Whether it’s for work or leisure, visiting different travel destinations gives us the welcome chance to see new sights, taste new local fares, and experience new cultures that are completely different from our own. The most passionate of travelers among us often save up to visit a new state or country at least once a year. 

Unfortunately, one of the downsides to frequent travel is its contribution to human-induced climate change. According to iea.org, aviation accounted for 2 percent of global energy-related CO2 emissions in 2022, and due to trends like revenge travel—in which people travel as much as they can to make up for lost time during the pandemic—the industry continues to produce high levels of carbon emissions. 

Given the situation, you may be wondering if there’s a more responsible way to travel—one that provides the same experience of enrichment and enjoyment, but without so much heavy consumption. This is where the notion of the “green traveler” mindset comes in. Let’s take a look at what this means and how you might be able to embody this ethos for yourself.  

 

What Does it Take to Be a Green Traveler? 

A green traveler is someone who focuses on minimizing their impact on the local environment, communities, and cultures during their travels. They make it a point to follow sustainable and responsible tourism practices and encourage others to do the same to offset their environmental footprint. 

At its core, being a green traveler entails a more mindful outlook on the impact of one’s travels and the value of making greener, more sustainable, and more ethical choices when possible. Here are some tips to keep your own travels more eco-friendly: 

1) Pack Light

Being light in your packing approach will not only make your journey more convenient; it also has environmental benefits. When you pack light, you reduce the weight on any form of transportation you take when you travel, resulting in lower fuel consumption and carbon emissions. Light luggage also minimizes the need for larger accommodations and lowers your overall ecological footprint. 

To avoid overpacking on your next trip, it helps to create a packing checklist and stick to it. This way, you can lay out all of your planned clothes and gear beforehand and avoid adding extra stuff to bulk up your luggage. 

2) Pack High-Quality, Multi-Purpose Travel Clothes

Another thing you should consider doing is packing high-quality travel clothes that you can mix and match. Go for versatile garments that are made out of sustainable and durable fabrics and that can withstand multiple wears. Examples of these types of clothing include breathable cotton T-shirts, high-waisted leggings for women, and comfortable sneakers or hiking sandals with heel straps. 

The goal should be to bring clothes that are easy to style together and that can be worn for multiple occasions, like a trek or a visit to a cultural attraction. You should also build a travel wardrobe that discourages you from having to buy new clothes as replacements, thus reducing your contribution to textile waste.

3) Bring Reusable Travel Utensils and Beverage Containers

Do your part to limit what goes into the world’s landfills, and bring your own reusable travel utensils and beverage containers on your next trip. On top of helping you cut down on plastic waste and minimizing your environmental footprint, it also encourages sustainable practices wherever your travels take you. 

Pack a reusable water bottle to stay hydrated without relying on disposable plastic bottles. It’s also a good idea to bring a set of durable, reusable utensils for meals on the go. Most dining and tourism establishments make it easy for travelers to refill their water bottles and pack meals for takeout, so take advantage of the greener trends happening in the communities you visit. 

4) Bring Reusable Shopping Bags 

Reusable shopping bags will come in handy when you make multiple purchases during your travel adventures. These lightweight and foldable bags will eliminate the need for single-use plastic bags, allowing you to actively contribute to reducing plastic pollution in the destinations you visit. 

Many cities around the world are adopting plastic reduction initiatives, and as an aspiring green traveler, your effort to use reusable bags aligns with these efforts.

5) Use Sustainable Toiletries

If you plan to bring toiletries, make sure to choose products that come in eco-friendly packaging, such as refillable containers or materials that are easily recyclable. You should also select biodegradable and cruelty-free options for items like soap, shampoo, and toothpaste. 

On the other hand, if you’re not inclined to shop for these items individually, consider bringing a reusable toiletry kit instead. These choices will help you minimize your environmental impact every time you leave your home country and support the growing market for sustainable and ethical toiletry products.

6) Use Public Transportation to Get Around

Yet another significant thing you can do as a more mindful traveler is to take public transportation whenever possible. One of the goals of green travel is sustainable mobility, which puts the emphasis on moving more people than private vehicles per journey. You’ll likely be able to save a significant amount of money in addition to bringing down fuel consumption when you choose to take a bus, train, tram, or other form of public transportation in the country you’re visiting. 

7) Support Local Businesses

Lastly, it’s in your best interest to choose local businesses for your accommodations, dining, and shopping. This not only provides you with a more authentic travel experience; it also ensures that a more significant portion of your spending directly benefits the local community as well. 

Explore local markets, dine in family-owned restaurants, and stay in locally operated accommodations. This way, you’ll be contributing to the local economy and promoting sustainable tourism practices that preserve the unique cultural and environmental aspects of the destinations you visit.

Go Green on Your Global Travels

Make the most out of your next trip by adopting the green travel practices listed above. Even as a single traveler, your actions contribute a lot towards preserving the world for future generations and encouraging others to explore the world with a more conscious mindset.



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Site Policy

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.