10 tips on how to reduce waste while travelling
A lot of unexpectedness during your travels can mean lots of waste, but it does not have to. Want to reduce your trash? Here are nine tips on how to reduce your waste while travelling.
Just say no to the unnecessary things
Say no to brochures and souvenirs you do not need. Skip the fridge magnets and postcards. Instead of giving unnecessary gifts, you can organize a cultural night where you show your friends and family pictures of your trip. You can tell a story about where you went and what you learned and offer traditional food if possible. Feel free to use a powerpoint presentation, watch youtube videos or movies about the country. I bet your friends will get stronger emotions and memories from that. For kids, you can take something from nature. When I went to Italy, I took two huge pine cones and my siblings were very happy.
Skip the paper and show the ticket from your phone
In many places, you can have the ticket barcode scanned from your phone without the need to print out the ticket. One ticket less is one ticket less.
Pack a water bottle or thermos with you
Carrying and refilling your own bottle can save so much money. If you want to save space, take a thermos with you to use for both hot and cold drinks. You can buy coffee in it and many places all over the world even give you a discount for that. The drink also stays hot for a lot longer and you can put it in your bag. Some people like me prefer to keep their coffee and water separate and carry both a water bottle and a thermos. You do you! If you are just choosing a thermos or a bottle for yourself, I recommend Klean Kanteen bottles. They have a lifetime guarantee and you can order small parts separately for them if something breaks.
Have cloth bags and/or a box to pack your food in
Skip the packaging waste and ask the shopkeepers to put snacks into your own bag. You can even get a croissant into your own cloth bag. Some people prefer to carry a box with them instead an get their pies packed into that. In that case, use what you already have at home. This way you can avoid the overpackaged aeroplane lunch.
Use a cloth napkin
You can use one cloth napkin for your mouth and the other in case of a runny nose. This way you don’t need to carry or buy tissues. You just need to wash the napkins with your other laundry.
Bring your own toiletries
Although many hotels have a general dispenser for shampoo and body wash, there are still places that offer single-use mini-toiletries. Bring your own solid shampoo and soap to save space in the suitcase.
Look for zero waste accommodation
If you want to find a place that sorts their waste and tries to prevent it then type in “zero waste” to your Airbnb or Booking.com search bar. If you are coming to Ljubljana, for example, search for Modern Bright, a zero waste apartment.
Do your part by sorting waste as much as possible. When you book your accommodation, you can ask for information about whether this opportunity is available.
If you visit a hotel or a place that could reduce or sort their waste, write a kind letter with a suggestion for improvement. Your letter can help reduce waste for years to come.
Pick up trash You can contribute by participating in a cleanup event or taking the initiative alone. myWater's team took part in this year's World Cleanup Day.