How to reduce your carbon footprint as a traveller.

I can’t believe we’re already a week into 2019. It means one fifty-secondth or 2% of the year has already gone. It also means, according to Statistic Brain, that 27% of New Year’s Resolutions have already failed. How cheery.

If your resolution for 2019 was to be kinder to the planet, reduce your carbon footprint and live more sustainably, however, hopefully this post will help you keep – and succeed – at your goal. The start of a new year is as good a time as any to make a change, after all.

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In November last year I booked flights to Montreal. On a complete whim, without much thought or research, when I saw the return flights for £88, I just booked them. Yep, less than £100 for return flights to Canada. Naturally, I was excited to share my most money-saving travel deal to date, so posted about the flights on Facebook, asking my friends for recommendations of things to do in Montreal, places to stay and (most importantly) where and what to eat and drink during my trip.

I received suggestions for bars and recommendations for poutine, and lots of ‘wow, wish I could come’ comments. And then there was a comment from a friend asking: “Do you ever worry about the amount of CO2 emissions your jaunts create?” It was apparently a “genuine question”.

So, after a bit of thought (possibly more thought than I actually gave to booking the flights), I replied with a genuine answer: “No, not particularly.”

I love wind farms

Why I don’t worry about my carbon footprint.

I sound like an arsehole, right? Eco-warriors around the world are probably reading this, shaking their fists and thinking: “How can she be so callous about climate change? She’s single-handedly destroying our planet with her far-flung travels.”

But I’m really not an arsehole, and I’m not destroying Earth – not single-handledly anyway. Of course I care about my personal carbon emissions, about the effect I’m having on that hole in the ozone layer, but I don’t worry about it. There are loads of things I actively do (see below) to reduce my carbon footprint, and thus minimise the impact my travelling has on the planet. But I know that my jetting off four or five times a year isn’t even going to cause a ripple in the sea of climate change.

As In These Times eloquently puts it, “unless you’re extremely wealthy or in the top brass of a multinational corporation, you probably don’t need to need to worry all that much about your own role in fueling the climate crisis.”

According to its research, just 100 companies have been responsible for 77% of global carbon emissions since 1988. The richest 10% of people in the world are responsible for nearly half of emissions rooted in personal consumption – while the poorest people contribute approximately 10%. So if you’re looking for a culprit in the climate crisis, you should look beyond travel bloggers like myself.

Personal consumption matters, especially in the northern hemisphere. But the consumption of the rich and the companies they run, matters more.

Should we be worried about the effect our trips abroad have on climate change?

Ways to reduce your carbon footprint when travelling.

As I went on to explain to my friend with the genuine question, planes will always fly, regardless of whether I’m on them or not. For example, I once took a flight with just seven passengers aboard. That airline undoubtedly paid more for staff wages, fuel, aircraft maintenance, airport fees, government fees, food and drink served to those seven passengers, the cost of running computer systems to track bookings, travel agent and flight booking website fees, pilot training and other incidental costs, than it made revenue from seat sales.

But the airline didn’t cancel the flight because it hadn’t filled all the seats, or because of concerns about the empty plane’s emissions impact on the ozone. And although the plane was empty, its emissions would’ve been only slightly less than if it’s flown with a bum on every seat (due to weight and fuel consumption). Therefore, surely it’s better to be on a flight and ensure it’s flying to maximum capacity, so the personal carbon footprint of each passenger is less? Just a thought…

Anyway, I do plenty of things on a personal level, both at home and while abroad, to minimise my impact on the planet. I believe that a little extra care when planning a trip – and a little extra effort during it – can reduce your carbon footprint, allowing you to travel more sustainably while still experiencing all that a country has to offer.

Deforestation means less oxygen in the atmosphere

Below are just some of the “green” things I do, which I believe go some way in compensating for any negative affect my trips have on the planet:

1. Fly economy class.

If you’re going to fly, economy class is the more environmentally friendly option. I’ve flown business class once, and only because it was the cheapest way to get from London to Belfast. Every other flight has been economy, which has a far lower impact on my carbon footprint than flying business.

Can’t understand why? Imagine air travel to be like road travel, comparing a bus carrying 55 people and a car carrying five. Both vehicles produce similar levels of emissions, but when you split the emissions by the number aboard, the carbon footprint of each person on the bus is considerably less than those in the car. It’s the same with business versus economy on planes.

Britain’s own Prince William sets an example here, by flying economy class – unlike Prince Alwaleed bin Talal al-Saud, who converted an entire plane into a palace.

Flying economy class

2. Keep luggage to a minimum.

This goes without saying really, but as my blog name suggests, I “always carry on”. Even when I spent 27 days in Colombia, I only took a carry on case.

Travelling light means I not only save money on flights (some carriers can charge up to £50 each way for hold luggage) and save time when landing and getting out of the airport, I also reduce my personal input on the plane’s emissions, because travelling lighter means less weight, which means less fuel consumption.

3. Reuse water bottles.

Anyone who knows me knows I drink a lot of water. So I always reuse water bottles on any flight, road trip, hike or sightseeing tour. This keeps the several plastic bottles I might have used during the trip out of landfill, and again, saves money. Though I haven’t got one of these yet (hint hint, if anyone’s looking for a gift for me), but if you’re travelling somewhere where drinking tap water isn’t advisable, get a reusable bottle with a built-in filter. This means you can save money on bottled water, save the planet from nonbiodegradable plastic and drink tap water without the worry of tummy troubles and spending your trip in the bathroom.

Also, if you like a tea or coffee on the go, bring a travel mug with you. Many coffee shops now allow you to bring your own cup, and some even offer discounts to customers with reusable mugs. If you were to get a coffee every weekday, on your commute to work for example, that’s about 260 paper cups and plastic tops that you’d be saving from landfill.

Avoid plastic going into landfill - reuse water bottles

4. Don’t waste food.

As a child, I was taught to eat everything on the plate in front of me – regardless of whether I liked it or not. It’s a mentality that’s still with me now, some 30-years later; so if I’m in a restaurant, I always try to eat everything I’ve ordered.

I despise food waste. I get annoyed when I’m at an all-inclusive resort buffet restaurant and I see people piling their plates with mountains of food they’re just going to leave. And I get even more irritated when it’s in a country where, outside of the resort’s confines, local families are struggling and relying on handouts from food banks.

To ensure I’m not wasting food (or money) at home, I only buy food I know that I’m able to consume. For example, about a year ago I stopped buying milk; I could never finish even the smallest carton before it turned sour (even when sharing it with my cats), so I’ve switched to instant coffee sachets instead.

Planning, preparation and creativity are essential for reducing personal food waste. Living alone and only ever cooking for one makes it a challenge, as a lot of food comes in family-sized portions. But it’s a challenge that’s resulted in an appreciation for Tupperware. Batch cooking and freezing dishes like bolognaise, chilli con carne and casserole is the way forward. For more tips, check out this BBC Good Food article on how to reduce food waste.

5. Don’t waste water.

I’m sure you’ve seen those little cards (sometimes a sticker, strategically stuck on the mirror so you can’t miss it while brushing your teeth) in the hotel bathroom, sharing how many gallons of water it takes to wash the sheets and towels each day. By now those cards are so familiar they’re easy to ignore. But in the interest of the environment, don’t ignore them. Laundry accounts for 16% of an average hotel’s water usage, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. So cut down on the laundry load, save water and other resources by hanging up and reusing your towels, and only request clean sheets when absolutely necessary. If I’m only staying somewhere for a week (or less) for example, there’s no point changing the bedding unless it’s covered in sand or something.

Saving water at home isn’t difficult either – especially since I had a water meter fitted, letting me see exactly how much I’m using. I take showers instead of baths, I turn the tap off when I brush my teeth, and I only ever boil the amount of water I need in the kettle.

Save water by reusing towels

6. Don’t waste gas and electricity.

That leads nicely onto my next point: wasting power.

Having previously worked as a journalist at the UK’s biggest money-saving website, I know all about reducing power consumption to save money on energy bills – but I never really appreciated that less power also meant being more environmentally friendly. I’m pleased to say though, long after leaving that job, I still practise my money-saving/energy-saving/planet-saving ways. For example, I unplug my phone as soon as it’s finished charging, I turn off lights as I leave a room, and I don’t heat my house unless I’m there. Oh, and if I had a TV (which I currently don’t), I’d turn it off at the set, rather than leave it on standby using the remote.

When you’re travelling, whether staying in a 5 star luxury resort, an Airbnb or a hostel, always treat your accommodation like you would if it were you paying the power bills. Turn off lights you’re not using, take shorter showers and keep the thermostat at a reasonable temperature – or turn it off altogether if you’re going out. There’s no point having the aircon or heater on when you’re not in the room, so stop thinking you’re clever for figuring out that the power stays on even if you’ve left the room if you stick a diners club card into the key card slot. It’s not big and it’s not clever, it’s wasteful.

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7. Reduce your waste levels altogether.

While you’re at it, why not reduce as much of your personal waste as you can?

Limit the amount of single-use plastic you use when travelling and at home. Don’t buy anything unnecessary. See all those condiment sachets over there, do you really need six packets of salt and four ketchups? You’re only going to use two of each, but once you’ve touched them, your waitress can’t put them back into the condiment bowls (in case you’ve injected them with poison or something), so they’ll go straight in the rubbish bag, and then straight to landfill, wasted and unable to biodegrade.

The temptation to buy myself new clothes is strong, especially when I’m being advertised to left, right and centre – but I can usually avoid it, preferring to spend my money on travel and experiences. I’m not embarrassed to admit that when I do buy myself ‘new’ clothes, they are often from charity shops. I feel better about giving the money to charity and putting something to use, rather than sending it to landfill. And when I have unwanted clothes, I’ll either donate them to charity or sell them on Facebook marketplace or at car boot sales (which can fund further travels).

I stopped using single-use carrier bags long before they were chargeable in the UK (mainly because Tesco gave green Clubcard points if you brought your own bags with you – and Clubcard points could be used for Avios points, which can be used for free hotel stays). I’ve also switched to paperless bills and e-boarding passes wherever possible. Not only is this easier than having to file endless documents, but it has drastically reduced both paper usage and the effect of transporting all that post to me. I’ve also registered on several databases so I don’t receive junk mail – and any that I do receive goes straight into the recycling.

8. Recycle all that can be recycled.

I recycle everything that can be recycled: card, paper, glass, tin cans, drinks cans and hard plastics. I get a strange satisfaction seeing my recycling bin being more full than my waste bin. And even when travelling I try to recycle wherever possible. Though an Airbnb in Santo Domingo that I stayed in took recycling and sustainability to a whole new level…

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9. Buy local.

I try to buy local produce and products wherever possible – both at home and when travelling. This allows me to sample the local cuisine and absorb as much of the local culture as I can, without fear of contributing heavily to the climate crisis.

Buying from a farmer’s market, an independent butcher or green grocer that sources their produce from local farms means your food will have travelled less ‘food miles’ than supermarket produce. Did you know that the average vegetable travels approximately 1,500 miles to get to your plate? Buying local therefore saves fuel and reduces carbon emissions.

10. Use public transport.

For the most part I use public transport at home. I spend nearly five hours a day commuting to and from work using South West trains, despite the fact that it would be quicker if I drove. And if I need to get to the airport, I usually prefer to take the train – as it saves on parking and is better for the environment.

If you’re travelling to a city with a reliable public transport network, the greenest option is a no-brainer. Check out the public transport options in your destination city before departing – you might be surprised what you find. I certainly was with many of the European countries I’ve visited, especially Hungary and Croatia. Their trains, trams and buses were frequent, clean, quick and cheap.

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11. Walk walkable distances.

I am a big, big fan of walking – I walk as much as possible, to get from A to B and also for pleasure. Some of my favourite spots for walking in the UK include Spurn Point and the Trans Pennine Trail, near where I used to live up in East Yorkshire.

When abroad, I like to just wander aimlessly and see what I stumble across. From amazing street art in Oslo and colourful streets in Amman to a clowder of cats in Kouklia in Cyprus, walking is not only a healthier and more environmentally friendly mode of transport, but also allows you to find hidden spots in the city you might not have ever seen if travelling on a bus or driving.

12. Rent a bike.

Sometimes you just can’t get cram it all in when on foot, though. That’s when you should get on your bike – or if not your own, hire one. Bicycles and motorised bikes are good options for travellers who want the freedom of individual travel with the benefits of reducing their environmental impact. I’ve hired bikes when in Paris and Mexico – and managed to travel a lot further than I would have been able to walking, while also working on my tan in the sunshine.

4. Stop 1 - Notre Dame 9

13. Eat less (red) meat.

All meat is relatively resource intensive, but beef in particular is a huge greenhouse gas emitter. A lot of articles published over the last few months have emphasised the importance of ditching meat to fight climate change – even switching to eating chicken over beef is preferable. Though I’ve never been a big fan of beef, and rarely eat lamb, I do like pork products and fish – so I’d find it difficult to go 100% vegetarian right now. Nevertheless, my meat consumption is considerably less than most.

To those that think Veganism is the answer (perhaps you’re partaking in that fad Veganuary?), check out this post on why going vegan won’t save the world

14. Don’t have children.

Ok, a little extreme, but if someone doesn’t exist, they don’t have a carbon footprint, right? This reasoning might seem cynical and at the same time stupidly obvious, but it’s also true. According to Population Matters, having one fewer child is 25% more effective in cutting carbon emissions than living without a car.

Having children means driving to school every day, multiple loads of washing per week, buying and cooking more food, and probably having quite a few more electronic devices plugged in around the house than a single person living on their own. As I have no children (and don’t plan to pop any out any time soon), I know that my carbon footprint is considerably less than families with children.

wooden-laundry-washing-clothes-line

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There’s obviously loads more I could do to reduce my impact on the planet when travelling. Things like carbon offsetting and flying directly wherever possible (or at least a flight path with minimal stop-overs), as well as less hotels and more camping. And travellers who are serious about seeing the world while remaining eco-friendly should explore ecotourism. Defined by the Nature Conservancy as “environmentally responsible travel to natural areas,” ecotourism emphasises conservation, education, traveller responsibility and active community participation, and is a way to explore our world without stressing its resources.

Are you concerned by climate change and the impact your travels have on the environment? If so, what have you done to try to minimise your carbon footprint? Is there anything else I could do – both at home or while travelling – to reduce mine?

Also, if you have any suggestions or recommendations for Montreal, I’d love to hear them!

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149 thoughts on “How to reduce your carbon footprint as a traveller.

  1. These are great ideas. Every little bit helps, so the more each of us can do to limit our negative impact on the environment, the better.

  2. this just so much fun to read cause i was just nodding along to every single one hahahahaha. Is that a picture of your apartment btw? Because it’s such a cute space!

  3. This post is detailed and packed with helpful tips many travellers consciously and unconsciously fail at. The end result is terrible for us eventually. I’ll share this post with friends and family. Hoping we all become responsible travellers and tourists.

  4. I love the way you write! You make many valid points here in regards to the carbon footprint of travel and offer even better advice on reducing it. Thanks for the valuable post!

  5. Thanks for the insight! I didn’t really realize the impact we have when travelling (I usually try my best to reduce waste at home, but I never applied the concept to vacations!) Although I must admit I do try to pack as light as possible, always travel economy, and don’t eat red meat. So, I am doing my best! (I hope!) Every little helps!

  6. I agree with most of your ideas (except for flying economy, unless the economy airline is good). Being minimalist and mindful will help us reduce carbon footprints. There is no reason to waste even there are plenty of resources.

  7. I don’t always worry about my carbon footprint as a traveller either. Your tips are really great. I already implement many of these in my daily life & try to do it when I travel as well (recycling isn’t always easy).

  8. I have failed on the having children bit as I have 6, but in all seriousness, we try to walk everywhere, have reduced plastics and recycle as much as possible

  9. I study sustainability and have been doing a lot of research into air travel recently; as a result I will never fly again. Though this is not the same as never travelling again.

    Despite us not being in the same leagues as the high-polluting elites, only 10% of the worlds population has ever been on plane, and if you look online, with a decent salary, we’re in the top 3% richest in the world. According to some calculators we should all be aiming for a 2 ton carbon footprint per year. It’s a tricky topic isn’t it, because we think we have a ‘right’ to air travel, but because of this attitude we are denying those who have never flown a right to survive. Sadly, as well, our small changes like driving less or recycling are overshadowed as soon as we get on a plane. I only recently learnt about all of this; two years ago I visited Panama and as a consequence of global warming, the idyllic island community I visited have since been forced to leave their island homes and way of life because of sea level rise. There is also a case of ‘last chance tourism’ – there will be a rush of tourists to these places that are likely to disappear, causing even more emissions! I’m not sure that eco-tourism is the answer; it does a very good job of soothing our consciences and making airlines more money, when they’re facing a threat from dwindling fossil fuel resources. I can recommend Peter Kalmus and George Monbiot on Twitter – Kalmus is a climate scientist and has written a good book about giving up flying. There are a lot more resources, especially a lot of research papers about the struggles of communicating the effects of climate change and changing people’s attitudes, especially us in the West who are creating the most emissions yet will not suffer the majority of the effects. It’s a no-brainer that the travel companies will do everything they can to promote more and more travel… if the scientists had anywhere near the amount of money and good PR, then we might think differently. We could even invest the money spent on air travel on renewable-powered efficient high-speed rail if the demand was there. Would love to talk about it more – those of us in a position to influence others should make the most out of the opportunity, if we can. https://stay-grounded.org/position-paper/ is another good resource. My carbon footprint was 13 tonnes last year: there are loads of calculators online and I like the challenge of how I can get it even lower. Flying is just not cool anymore!

  10. Phew! I’m glad to say I am not in the 27% who have failed on their New Years Resolutions! These are all such great reminders. I always use a reusable water bottle (well, not ALWAYS … I guess I could work on it). A big one that I’d like to get better about is using less water – I love a long shower and it’s not only a water waster, but a time waster too. Love your writing style!

    1. Thanks for your lovely comments Dani – and yes, I know exactly what you mean about it also being a time waster 😉 perhaps you could set yourself a timer? I try and always have a shower within 2 songs on Spotify x

  11. Compared to other modes of transport, such as driving or taking a train, air travel has a greater climate impact per passenger per mile, even over longer distances. It can be hard to reduce your emissions!

    1. I don’t 100% disagree, but nor do I agree Moni. Tourism is a way of life. Many of the world’s poorest countries rely on tourism and have few other economic alternatives. Tourism is now the principal export earner for a third of developing nations. In developed countries, too, tourism is valuable for conservation and rural development. If you consider how best to use your flight, and choose to go on trips that bring tangible benefits to the destination – wherever it is in the world – you can make a significant difference to conservation and to local communities. So not flying at all probably isn’t the best solution… x

  12. Yes!! I love this post because so many times when we are travelling I think we forget that we still need to be aware of what we are throwing away and how much energy we are using. It counts outside our home just as much as inside our home.

  13. I must admit, my carbon footprint is rarely at the forefront of my mind, reading this has definitely given me food for thought!

  14. Great ideas, aside from the carbon footprint (which is a difficult topic I admit as i like to travel), what really annoys me is all the unnecessary plastic waste on flights. So I’m pleased to hear that Ryanair wants to eliminate these in the coming years. I’m also a big fan of sustainable travel, local transport and buying locally make for great memories and are so much more sustainable 🙂 #goinggreen

  15. I love the ideas! I recently started carrying an empty water bottle into the airports with me to help save on plastic waste and cost! Looks like there are some other things I can think about also.

  16. Even though large companies do most of the polluting and have a greater impact on climate changes, I think we can all do our part, as individuals, to try and reduce our carbon footprint. Being more conscious of our waste and what types of transportation we use can help make some impact.

  17. It’s true that the plane will still fly even when you’re there or not. So the carbon emission is the same. Thank you for this list, will follow them!

  18. I really could do a better job of reusing water bottles. Although I would get nervous about doing that while out traveling, not sure about the health of the water supply in the various different countries. But I know it’s healthier for the environment for sure. Just have had friends develop Malaria in some areas of unclean water.

  19. These are great tips! I did not know that there was a difference flying business class and economy for the environment. So I’ve learn something here.

  20. Lol I love that last one Becca! Like you, I try to implement small things into my daily routine, recycle and definitely don’t waste food. I think if we all do our part, it’s better than nothing. Like you said, us travel bloggers need those planes to travel!!

  21. This is amazing. My husband and I have really been trying to be eco-conscious lately by recycling and switching out our cleaning products to safer alternatives. I really love these tips and they fit in perfectly for us since we love to travel and often!

  22. I am proud to say that from a young age I teach the children the importance of recycling, reusing and reducing as it was part of my growing up too! I swap second hand clothes with friends, used cloth diapers at home which lead using the toilet at one month old to avoid washing countless diapers :)…. And now, my children’s source of income is to collect bottles and take them to recycling depots each week.

  23. I do all the above other than I own a bike and had 5 kids. I also fly an awful lot, but most of it is to visit my family around the world and as we live abroad. I’ve heard many other sides to your point about the plane will fly regardless of whether it’s full of not, the more we fly the more routes will be put on and the more planes they put on, the more we’ll fly. Also the Top 100 countries who pollute the planet are making/providing services that we are demanding, it’s a vicious circle #goinggreen

  24. First of all, I am very similar to you in thought Becca, “planes will always fly, regardless of whether I’m on them or not.” I, in general, don’t proactively go out of my way to reduce any footprint. However, I don’t mind trying to be responsible!
    That is why I love your tips because they not only benefit our planet but they also have other wonderful effects on the world as we travel and explore it! For Example: I am a big advocate of not wasting food on planes or restaurants. I would rather give away my small bag of peanuts than have the attendants throw them in the trash.
    Also, I ALWAYS carry my own water bottle especially while flying! I like drinking water but I never mind filling up my water bottle from a fountain than wasting another plastic bottle! Plus I HATE buying water when I can get it for free from a fountain nearby! Drives me crazy!
    Anyways, Love all of your tips to reduce carbon footprint while travelling! Little efforts can go a long way!

  25. Some good tips here for travellers. I think if we all do a little bit more to reduce our carbon footprint we could make a big difference.

  26. I’d love to try Prince Alwaleed bin Talal al-Saud’s plane, sounds lush!
    Great post and I love anyone trying to aid people in reducing environmental impact but the science is there for veganism… it may not save the world but it’s the easiest way to make the biggest impact for the majority of us.
    Keep fighting the good fight 🙂

  27. I mean most of us don’t pay much attention to the carbon footprint that we leave behind us, I mean that is bad, of course, but still even recycling and cutting down on driving helps a lot basically, I try to recycle, as far as driving goes, it depends if I have a lot of time then commuting on public transport is not so bad, if I am in a hurry or something, hello there personal vehicle, but we all need to band together and try to save this planet, these are good tips, although some are extreme, but sometimes extreme is a must.

  28. A very mindful post! I think sometimes I forget to be frugal, but I need to pay more attention to it because it all adds up.

  29. When I travel, I treat it like I am at home. I use the same towel multiple times. I use my reusable water bottle. We save our left overs and eat them. And I always turn off the lights when I do not need them.

  30. I remember receiving a comment on my blog from someone telling me to stay home and stop traveling because of my carbon footprint. And it made me think how can I reduce it? Obviously I can’t just jump on a bus from Spain to London for example, when a flight takes 2 hours. However, I do agree with you. Reducing plastic, trying to be more eco-friendly, stop wasting water, are things that I do to compensate. I have a similar philosophy with you regarding food: “if it died for me, I will finish eating it, on my plate”.

  31. Great post. You make great points in how one person is able to do their part for the environment. It’s very difficult to live a life COMPLETELY free of anything that may cause the environment harm, it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. PS. Great price you got on that Montreal flight! I live in Toronto and flights to Montreal are almost never that cheap!

  32. These are great tips, once I saw that 27% of resolutions have already failed, that made my stomach sink . It will remind me to keep on striving. I am travelling in March so these are fab for me.

  33. I have never thought much about my carbon footprint when traveling. This is a great post to help spread some awareness and help in knowing how to reduce our own. Thanks for sharing!

  34. I think this is excellent! I love your tips and agree with your opinions here. I try to reduce my waste and do things like reuse bottles and the like but I agree that this is just a tiny drop… It is the large companies that do the most damage. Not saying we shouldn’t all do our part but blaming travel and travel bloggers isn’t quite correct.

    1. I used to practice a lot of these tips purely for the money saving benefits (because I’m a tightwad haha!). But now I’m also conscious of the amount of damage I’m doing to the planet with being wasteful x

  35. Oh jeeze I can’t believe we are already into the year by 2% scary when you think of that way. It is great there are ways to try and lower your carbon footprint when travelling these days. I try and do little bits but I 100% could do more.

  36. They are great tips and you really did get complete bargain flights to Canada!

    Hopefully all the little things people have started to do to help the environment will start to make a difference.

  37. I have seen many people take water and electricity for granted in a hotel as they feel they are not wasting their own resources. People should be more mindful of such things. Great tips!

  38. You really caught my attention with this! And I’m really glad that you’ve listed your knwoledge and wisdom when it comes to carbon footprint and how we can minimize producing them in our day-to-day lives! Yep, somehow the footprints are inevitable but we can minimize them by really becoming proactive with our life choices. The list is clear!

  39. What great tips! I always try to buy local when I’m away and if I’m somewhere like the maldives then I bring my trash home with me so that it doesnt end up on rubbish island xxx

  40. Interesting article. Many things are arguable, especially that you think your emissions are smaller as you don’t have children. If you apply the logic of dividing the share of emissions among passengers to justify why you travel, the same thing could be applied to people with children, the emissions will be divided by each member of a family! LOL
    I have two children, but I don’t have a car 😉 we pedal or walk to school!

  41. This is a great conversation starter when thinking about what we can all do to make a difference. There are so many little changes that can be made when we are mindful of our human impacts.

  42. Really impressive, and that is always the missing piece. most of us are curious about everything regarding traveling except the impact on the environment. thanks for the article really helpful

  43. Great tips on traveling smarter and leaving less of a carbon footprint. I learned many of these techniques when I spent the summer in Boca Del Toro, Panama 2 years ago!

  44. All the points you make about how we can, as individual, reduce our carbon emissions are brilliant and more and more people are taking these ideas on board. However I am that Eco-warrior you spoke about when it comes to flying (and many other things as well!).

    As the wealth of developing countries grows, air travel is set to increase rapidly over the coming years further fuelling (pun intended) carbon emissions which are made worse by the fact that the emissions are high in the atmosphere where they are proportionally more damaging than those emitted at ground level.

    You quote that 100 companies are responsible for 77% of global carbon emissions – that may well be correct but it is because they are producing goods for the population as a whole. If we bought less “stuff”/travelled less/wasted less etc companies would produce less and global emissions would fall. If we flew less those almost empty planes would be taken off the timetable.

    Carbon offsetting ie eating less red meat etc so I can fly guilt free (in it’s most simple terms) is the preserve of those who can still afford to eat some red meat (or vegan food transported around the world) and then hop on a plane several times a year for leisure. And the damaging effects of increasingly high levels of tourism on many fragile economies/landscapes is well documented. 5 reef islands in the Solomon Islands have been lost to rising sea levels since 2011 and this number will only increase.

    I am not in a position to tell anyone to not get on a plane and or gly off for a holiday. But I can point out that it is totally unsustainable and that flying contributes to the damage of many of the very places so many people fly to visit. However the real damage is felt not in the more affluent areas where he people who most frequently fly, live but in the very poorest regions of the world. The truth of the matter is that if we all stopped flying as well as reducing our carbon footprint in all the ways you mentioned (and many more besides) we could massively limit climate change. It is, however up to each of us to decide what we are willing to forgo in order to save our planet. #GoingGreen

  45. It is so important that we keep our surroundings clean everytime we travel. i. Respect to the local people and to other tourist. I omce a volunteer of a group who go to a beach resort and clean up the area for plastic trash it was worth it,

  46. We should always be aware that our waste, no matter how small, is still contributing to climate change and the destruction of our earth. We need to be more aware of all that we use and how it affects the very place we call home. I love your tip to reuse water bottles!!!

  47. I have thought before about airplanes flying whether or not I’m on them. You are right that there are many things we can do to reduce our footprint. Water bottles are a life saver! Bikes are also amazing!

  48. The statistic made my day Lol. Buying locals is what I am doing every time I travel. This is my way to show my support to the locals.

  49. Gas and electricity are my main goals to reduce using while travelling. I always use reusable bottles and tend to travel by bike which leads me to minimizing things I use daily both during the travels and in day to day life. But during the vacation I often get tired (esp after a long day cycling) so I want to have a warm cozy space etc so I tend to heat up the room more than necessary. Thinking green sometimes definitely makes you reduce comfort a tiny bit

  50. I think this is a great initiative! If we can leave a place we’ve visited just a little better than when we got there, the world would be a better place.

  51. I definitely think being conscious of how our escapades can affect things around us is smart. We can still have fun and explore without causing too much harm.

  52. Super love all the ideas! I consider myself a green traveler like i always carry an empty water bottle every time i travel just to save on plastic waste. Love your ideas. Thanks a lot for sharing.

  53. Such a great content, we can all make a change, little good changes we do can make a big impact if we all do cooperate.

  54. As a frequent traveler, this post has come useful for me, as a reminder as well. I do agree there are something we could do, eg re-use water bottles and most places in Europe there are free fountain water for drinking where we can refill our water bottles.

  55. A lot of these are really good tips although, I have to politely disagree about not having children. They are our future.

  56. So many great ideas on how to reduce your carbon footprint! I always try to use reusable water bottles. Such an easy way to help the earth

  57. These are some great tips! For the past few years, I have been trying to work on some of these, especially eliminating waste. It’s nice to have some thought out responses for when someone asks me about this! I wouldn’t have known what to say at first either!

  58. Not sure about the not have children tip – I have 6 #oops – we do use public transport though and reuse water bottles.

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