Tips for Traveling GreenWhether your destination is a friend or relative’s home for the holidays, a warm get-a-way from the MidWest cold weather, or a ski destination (to name a few examples) there are many opportunities for traveling green. These tips are great for any time of the year, but they are definitely relevant over the holidays with this being one of the busiest travel times of the year. Here are some tips we’ve found to be useful for any traveler wanting to go green:
- Help to reduce greenhouse gases by packing lighter. The weight that any vehicle is carrying, whether it be a plane or your personal vehicle, increases emissions which in turn increase greenhouse gases. According to whatsyourimpact.org, these gases not only contribute to global warming but also ocean acidification, smog and ozone depletion.
- This tip might be tricky with air travel, but if you’re driving this holiday season try and bring your own reusable containers such as water bottles and plastic leftover containers to cut back on plastic bottles, cans, paper plates and food storage wraps. Also bring reusable bags instead of having your cousin pack all of that leftover oyster stuffing that you hate and the stale cookies your aunt made in her leftover plastic grocery bags.
- Turn off the lights and unplug your appliances before leaving home. For security purposes you can set timers on a couple of your lights to cycle on for temporary periods to make it seem like someone is home, but unplugging everything that won’t be in use will make a difference.
- Turn down the thermostat. We’re not recommending letting your pipes freeze or making your fish tank turn into an ice skating rink for the cat, but turning the temperature down even a few degrees will also make a huge difference on the power usage during your absence.
- If you’re driving and don’t want to put extra miles on your personal vehicle, rent one that that is the greenest possible – think hybrid and get the smallest possible that suits the number of travelers you have.
- Choose a green place to stay! The Green Hotel Association can help you find the one you’re looking for.