Travel is paramount for self-development. It takes us out of our comfort zones and exposes us to new ways of living. It also causes us to appreciate the value of life and get outside of the material things. That does not mean it doesn’t come with unfortunate consequences, and that is why making zero waste swaps is vital as we consider eco-friendly travel.
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Zero Waste Swaps for Responsible Travel
Why is sustainable travel important?
According to the United Nations Environment Programme, 14% or 4.8 million tons of waste results from tourism. That number is staggering, but thankfully sustainable travel trends are catching on as more people become informed. Responsible travel is something that each person should consider as they traverse the globe.
Are you wondering why zero waste is important?
Just like when you are at home, recycling is essential, as is omitting single-use plastic from our lives. Especially while on the go, people are using these toss away items en mass.
It’s necessary to think about having sustainable vacations and practicing green travel, and considering zero waste swaps can be a simple, first step in protecting our globe and reducing waste as you travel.
Consider the following items that are fabulous zero waste examples that you can take along and use over and over again.
Use zero plastic with a reusable water bottle
Whether or not you are a seasoned traveler, you probably know that a reusable water bottle is the first step in making zero waste swaps. What you probably didn’t know is that if you travel to a place that does not have safe water to drink, you will inevitably need to buy bottled water.
Water in plastic containers can get expensive and wasteful. The solution is rather simple. Just look for hotels and hostels that provide filtered water or a clean water canister, or invest in a water bottle with built-in filtration.
Invest in zero waste travel containers.
To a traveler, there is something exceptional about those little soap bottles you get at the hotel. Often they are luxury brands and smell irresistible. However, they usually end up in the trash after one or two uses.
Instruct the hotel staff not to replenish the disposable toiletries, and be sure to give them back and mention they are unopened. The best swap you can make while traveling and at home is to use bar toiletry products or refill your bottles at home.
Many countries don’t have the infrastructure to manage or recycle waste. Think about responsible travel and don’t waste plastic bottles. In third world countries, waste often ends up in the waterways, landfills, and even the streets, which can lead to unsanitary conditions.
Consider a zero-waste kit for cutlery.
A crucial part of sustainable tourism and responsible travel is not leaving anything behind. If your plan includes street food, then you will inevitably get disposable cutlery.
That is a lot of waste, so to make your journey more eco-friendly, invest in a reusable cutlery set. It’s a zero-waste swap that is easy to take along in a purse or backpack.
Ditch the plastic bags for a reusable tote.
The plastic baggie may as well be the biggest offender to our ecosystems – at home or on the journey. Purchasing a cute tote bag is convenient, too. Whether buying souvenirs or heading to a local market, you can reduce waste by taking along your bag. Every time you use it, you can feel good about saving the oceans and the landfills.
Another wasteful product is take-out food containers. Most of them are plastic, take up a lot of room, and get tossed after just one use. Fill collapsible food containers, and then fold them up when you finish.
You can make a difference with a few small changes!
With a few quick, affordable zero-waste swaps, you can make a tremendous difference. Do you have any eco-friendly travel trips? I’d love to hear why zero waste is important to you! Read more green travel advice here – you’ll be glad you did!