The world is opening up again and many of us are looking for a getaway.
Whether that is a staycation in good old blighty or further afield I’ve put together some top tips for an eco-friendly and sustainable stay!
If you can, consider a staycation in the UK. Not only is it easier for you (think, there’s no currency exchange, airport hassle,….) but staying in the UK is so much more environmentally friendly not taking flights.
We have some gorgeous destinations on our doorstep and we are keeping our money in our own countries’ economy.
My personal favourites are Newquay in Cornwall, Ilfracombe in Devon and the Snowdon area in Wales.
But lets face it, if we want some summer sun, or even on the other end of the scale, some snow, it may mean leaving the UK.
I’ve already touched on it lightly so lets explore travel options.
Land travel can only get you so far, so you can use sea crossings to get to France, Spain and many other European countries such as Holland, Belgium and Denmark.
You want to go further? The good news is flights aren’t all that bad as the average fuel consumption per transported passenger is below 4 litres per 100km compared to cars averaging 8-12 litres per 100km.
There’s also big steps being taken to further reduce fuel consumption, serving environmentally friendly meals and even adjusting the materials used for in-flight magazines (or removing them altogether!)
The most recent data puts TUI Airways as the most eco-friendly airline. So when booking take a few seconds to google the eco-credentials of the airline and consider alternatives. You might even save some money choosing a more ‘no frills’ approach to flying.
Travel options at destination
It’s easier said than done but try to pack light, every extra kilo on the plane burns extra fuel. We all take far too many clothes and other accessories. You could pack some super lightweight laundry strips in your case to hand wash and freshen up a few pieces to wear again.
Just the size of an envelope they wont take any room in your cases!
Time to find somewhere to stay. Choosing family-owned/independent hotels or home stays are great ways to support local businesses especially in the UK.
When you’re in your room treat it like your own home:
Try to avoid using the extras placed in rooms such as shampoo bottles and single use tea and coffee items. Taking your own shampoo bar doesn’t count towards your liquid allowance on flights and is a real space saver in those small hotel bathrooms.
These handmade ones mean you only need 1 bar for 5 uses which also reduces weight in your case.
Natural and cultural environment
Its time to explore! These top tips will ensure you keep the locals happy:
With so much to see and experience in such a short time why not combine the two? Join in with a beach clean up spending the day by the ocean while keeping it clean.
Eating and Drinking
IMPORTANT: stay safe when drinking water/ice in foreign countries to avoid issues arising from the differently treated water. Check the advice for the country you are travelling to.
You can decant bottled water into your reusable bottle to ensure the empty bottles are disposed of correctly and they are more handy to carry around.
Ideally you could embrace a different cuisine by supporting small and local bars and restaurants. IMPORTANT: be safe when ordering certain dishes including known culprits such as chicken and fish.
Other things to consider
Reduce/ resist buying souvenirs – most items taken home from holidays seem like a good idea at the time but then collect dust when you’re back to reality. Often souvenirs in tourist hotspots are unethically produced with unsustainable materials.
Completely avoid any items that could be considered illegal and/or use animal or wildlife in any way; for example, products using ivory, tortoise shell, reptile skins, furs and some corals and seashells.
Its not to say don’t buy any souvenirs. At the end of the day it’s a lovely token to remember a holiday. Try to support local projects that hand make items for charities and good causes.
It’s an unfortunate reality that all might not be as it seems on your dream vacation. Try to be alert to signs of slavery/trafficking. Do not enter into any confrontation or behave in a way that may cause a scene. Contact relevant local authorities to report any signs of illegal activity.
Wherever you choose to go and whatever you choose to do, make amazing memories and leave no trace except footprints in the sand
Love, Light and Green Vibes,