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Archive for the ‘Eco-Friendly’ Category

Even though the economy is slow right now, people still want to travel locally or abroad. With some adventures, a car is a must in reaching a particular destination. With Earth Day upon us, I tried to think about some environmentally friendly, budget travel tips.

Ever heard of car sharing? This is not borrowing a friend’s car to do some shopping. It’s a form of car rental in which you, as a member of a car sharing club, have access to a vehicle for an hour or two. You swipe a card in a reader by the windshield to gain access and you’re off. Hourly rates at car sharing clubs sure beat renting a car for several days and paying expensive overnight parking fees; not to mention, that car sharing clubs typically pick up your gasoline costs and insurance, too.

I find that car sharing meets the needs of individuals needing a car. This car sharing can be a blessing for a family wanting to just take a one day outing.

Read more about car sharing here to consider if it might benefit your travel budget. And be sure to check out this site and this one for information on Earth Day and how you can do your part to help the environment today and everyday!

Have yourself a great travel experience!!

“We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.”
-Native American Proverb

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Sometimes we forget that while we travel, we have an obligation to do it eco-consciously. The large hotels, pampering, and time off take our minds so far out of the realm of environmentalism. That’s why I think it’s important to remember that eco-friendly traveling requires making a few simple changes and can be so much more meaningful.

1. Use Public Transportation
Trains can be a great way to see parts of a country that roadways don’t traverse. Once you arrive at your green vacation destination, take advantage of buses, monorails, ferries, and subways rather than traveling by yourself in a gas guzzler.
Worried about what to do when you go abroad? Well, passengers on the highly regarded Swiss Train System can rent bicycles at stations and bring them abroad.

2. Pack Light
I am a large supporter of the “One Bag Rule” while on vacation. Take advantage packing light, making sure that you bring quality items that you can use repeatedly. Wrap up travel size toiletries in re-usable bags that will undoubtedly come in handy during your green vacation. Just make sure that you don’t more luggage than you need on a green vacation. It adds weight to whatever means to transportation you use, requiring more energy while adding more to the burden that you carry.

3. Take a Volunteer Vacation

Keep your vacation green by doing good while you’re away from home. Organizations like Habitat for Humanity and Global Volunteers allow travelers to take a meaningful vacation while giving back to an underdeveloped community. You can participate in projects such as helping to construct a holding tank for a community’s water supply, building classroom furniture and playground equipment, and installing footbridges that cross local rivers.

4. Book an Eco-Friendly Hotel

Put your money where your beliefs are and support eco-resorts, eco-lodges, and eco-hotels constructed from recycled materials. Don’t think that by doing this, you’ll have to forgo luxury on a green vacation either! At The Tides Riviera Maya for instance, natural materials are used throughout and no motorized vehicles are allowed on the property. If you’re worried that your eco-friendly choice might break the bank, be sure to check out TWDHF’s secondary blog: Budget Travel for some great tips and locations to check out.

5. Shoot Digital Shots
Carry a digital camera to take great vacation photos rather than a disposable or an film SLR camera. Not only does this cut down on waste to the environment, but you will take up less space in your suitcase with one camera and small memory cards. Be even more eco-friendly and use rechargeable batteries instead of disposables.

6. Acknowledge that Some Destinations Should be Off-Limits

Known as eco-tourism, there are destinations whose ecosystems are so fragile that the arrival of you and hundreds of other tourists can create severe, irreversible environmental impacts. Among them are the Galapagos Islands and the Amazon Rainforest.

7. Rent a Smart Car or Car Share
If you must rent a car on your green vacation choose a hybrid or a compact model that goes farther on less gas. Not only get a car that is easier on the environment, but if you can, try to group together when you travel and share a car. The extra people will lessen the impact gas emissions have on the ozone and save you money. Whichever route you choose, just make sure to stay at or below the speed limit to ensure that you’re conserving energy.

8. Conserve In-Room Energy

Just as when you’re at home, shut off the lights, TV, and air conditioner when you leave your room.

9. Don’t Generate Any Unnecessary Laundry

Must you have your towels and sheets changed everyday? The energy and the water required to wash them are wasteful. It’s become accepted practice for travelers to leave soiled towels and sheets on the floor and it is understood that everything else in the room does not need to be changed. When it comes to clothing, make sure that the items you’ve packed do not require any special laundering. Pack clothing that can withstand more than one wear to eliminate excess laundry.

10. Consume Locally
Maine lobster that you order in San Francisco or New Zeland lamb that you’re served in New York are the results of extensive long-haul shipping and handling. Instead choose locally grown meats, vegetables, fruits, and wines on your green vacation; you’ll develop a fuller appreciation of your area while you savor it.

Have a great travel experience!!


“My future starts when I wake up every morning…Everyday I find something creative to do with my life.”

-Miles Davis

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