Earth Friendly Travel Tips

Yep, I know- holidays abroad as a whole aren’t environmentally friendly.

We know there is a large environmental impact that comes along with travelling abroad. Nevertheless, Anna and I really enjoy travelling. However we do enjoy our fair share of stay-cations, to opt out of the air miles, but we still rack up the air miles. 

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We are lucky enough to have been to awesome places around the globe, and have more holidays lined up this year. All holidays take planning and prep time and trying to create no waste whilst on holiday adds to this planning time. I’ve outlined some of the things to consider when preparing to travel around to ensure the minimum amount of waste is being created.

Not packing crappy clothes I’ll never wear again.

Primark bargains are alluring ways to fill the suitcase with 25 new outfits that will be worn once and thrown out. But, in the UK, we get rid of

"680 million pieces of clothing per year, 235 million of which go straight to landfill" (Guardian, 2017)

I buy new clothes less and less now, as I opt for second hand and have really reduced my wardrobe size so that most of the individual items complement each other, so I can make numerous items out of them. The same goes for packing for a holiday, which weans I am able to pack SUPER light when you can.

If I do want to buy a new piece of clothing, I save up to buy a higher quality piece of clothing, which has been ethically made out of natural fabrics, so the production has a lower impact on the environment and when it comes to the end of its life, it can be easily recycled.

Taking a water bottle

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I really really hate how airlines make people throw away plastic water bottles as you go through customs and then overcharge you to buy some more water when you’re in the departures area. I know it is a safety to not have the liquids, so I drink or pour out the water from my bottle (I’ve been know to water the plants around various airports with it!) before going through customs, and refill on the other side.

When taking a water bottle on the flight- you have to be careful of pressure! Slightly loosening the lid before take off, will help stop the water exploding over you- like it has me on numerous occasions.

Carrying snacks or a meal

Check with the flight company before taking my word for it on this one, but most companies will allow you to make food on the plane with you, as long as they do not contain ingredients which might cause someone an anaphylaxis shock.

I’ve taken fruit on planes (both fresh and dried) and sandwiches which I keep in a lunchbox in my bag. I also have an old, but robust, plastic fork and spoon which I take on trips abroad with me. I’m conscious that a plastic knife may be harder to get through customs, so leave this at home.

 The Zero Waste essentials get a holiday too!

The Zero Waste essentials get a holiday too!

Once I have arrived at my destination, I clean the box and utensils so I can use them when buying street foods on holiday.

I did used to really enjoy plane food, however, the excess non recyclable waste they are wrapped in, makes it impossible for me to justify eating these.

 Reducing the liquids I take on board

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I managed it. Two weeks, and no more liquids than the flight allowance allows. This was possible because I was travelling with the Zero Waste mentality.

Shampoo

I have solid shampoo bars from LUSH, and I love them! They pack very light and can double as a bar of soap if needed.

Toothpaste

I am yet to transition to plastic free toothpaste (I’ve somehow collected hordes of tubes that need finishing up!) So I took a tube of paste along with my bamboo toothbrush.

Body wash

Like the shampoo, I buy a solid block of this, so it doesn’t count towards my liquid allowance.

Deodorant

I make my own deodorant, and will post the recipe on here soon. I put the deodorant into a small pot, and it lasted the full trip.

A razor

I took my butterfly razor, with no blade in it. I then managed to buy a single blade for the trip and recycle it before I flew home.

Makeup

I wear vey minimal makeup anyways, but what I do wear was decanted into tiny jars, and was enough to last the duration of the trip.

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I hope that passing on these tips will help to reduce the amount of excess packaging that can be created through travelling abroad!