Green on the go: eco-friendly travel tips

By VGP Blogger: Rachel B

Green on the go: eco-friendly travel tips

It is tough to travel and stay eco-friendly, but there are a number of ways you can reduce your carbon-footprint when you are on the road. Buying some of the products below requires a little up-front investment, but will also help you to save money in the long run. Anyone who is a frequent traveler knows how most hotel rooms have low quality bath products and how buying travel size products can add up so quickly.

Reusable travel sized containers: You can buy these at almost any pharmacy but refiling bottles at home is the easiest way to cut down on your plastic consumption. GoToob by humangear are the top of the line if you are looking to invest in bottles you can use time and time again.  They are airplane carry-on approved, food-safe (FDA) and 100% BPA and PC-free. I find that zip lock baggies are messy and wasteful so I have a reusable clear bag similar to these many options on Amazon.


Reusable utensils: Not only are plastic utensils non-biodegradable, but they are also rarely BPA-free. Instead, keep with you a set of reusable utensils such as those that are made of bamboo which is abundant and is usually grown without pesticides. To-Go Ware RePEaT Bamboo Utensil Set is one of the more popular brands with a fork, knife, spoon and pair of chopsticks. And how cute isthis set for kids?


Reusable bags: A lot of people are improving their usage of plastic bags in grocery stores, especially in cities like San Francisco and Washington DC that will charge you for bags, but travelers often forget to continue those good habits on the road. is an entire site devoted to the reusable bag- everything from totes to lunch bags to travel bags. Baggu bags are pretty and functional, folding up to a few square inches. Each Baggu bag holds up to 50 pounds and is less than $10.  I often buy them at my local Jcrew factory store when they have 40%off accessories but has any color or pattern you can imagine.


Solar chargers: Depending on where you are traveling to, a solar charger can be a great option to charge on the go and save yourself from eating up energy from standard plugs. This one works on everything from iPhone 5S 5C 5 4S 4, iPods, iPad Mini Retina, Samsung Galaxy, and most Android Smart Phones and charger

And don’t forget that you can save energy before your trip even starts. Before you leave, pull the plug on appliances that won’t be used when you are away such as TVs, VCRs, stereos, toasters, and microwaves. These items can still use energy in their off mode. Also set your thermostat and water heater at low. What are you favorite travel accessories to keep green on the go?


1 Comment on "Green on the go: eco-friendly travel tips"

  1. Great reminders! Some other tips & suggestions:
    1. Many hotels offer points or a credit if you reduce the number of times housekeeping cleans your room. (Westin is great for this). You can always request fresh towels if needed, but we really don’t need the room vacuumed and sheets washed everyday.
    2. Turn all the lights off when you leave your hotel for the day. European hotels are way ahead with that master key concept.
    3. Travel with your own coffee cup and reusable water bottle. It’s stunning to see how many coffee cups and lids people throw away every day after 5 minutes of use. Some cafes even offer 10 cents off if you bring your own cup.
    4. Ask the front desk to email you the hotel invoices (it kills me when they ask me if I want an envelope for the bill that is not being mailed! Really? So I can throw it away later?!).
    5. If you don’t read the paper every day, or prefer to read it online, then ask the hotel when you check in to not deliver a newspaper to your door.
    6. If your travel policy does not require a receipt for your expense, then just say no when they ask if you need one for your $3 bagel.

    A lot of being environmentally-friendly is about reducing waste. Traveling produces a ton of waste for the sake of convenience, and we can all make an effort to at least be mindful of our consumption.

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