If you have ever thought about small ways that you can help the environment while travelling, then you might have considered how much plastic you end up using. It’s not always easy to use sustainable tourism practices, but it can make more of a difference than you might realize. The best thing about changing your habits in regards to plastic usage is that it doesn’t have to be a challenge. In fact, it can be quite easy to use less while on the road. Here are some easy ways to travel plastic-free on your next journey.
Own a water bottle:-
A lot of plastic comes from the one-use water bottles that people carry around with them for an hour or two before disposing of them. While this can be convenient in many ways for travellers, it can also be a big problem if you start using them on a regular basis. Many countries also don’t have proper ways to recycle items, which can lead to having numerous water bottles in the trash. The simplest way you can avoid this is by purchasing your own water bottles and refilling them.
Choose a local restaurant:-
Choosing local shops and restaurants helps a local economy as well as prevents unnecessary plastic from being used. When you head to a local spot, it’s likely that you won’t be served on one-time plastic plates and silverware. Not only do you get the taste of a culture, but you are also avoiding chain restaurants where almost all of your silverware will be thrown away. For places like Southeast Asia where street food is popular, try to choose stalls where dishes are served on paper or Styrofoam rather than plastic.
Order local dishes:-
This also goes for not just where you choose to eat, but what you choose to eat, as well. Ordering foreign dishes in a new location not only doesn’t give you the taste of a culture, but the packaging required to make these meals comes in plastic. For example, many Asian dishes are normally cooked with rice or noodles made from rice. Pasta dishes, on the other hand, are usually imported from another location and can cause much more waste than having traditional cuisine. Local dishes allow you to experience a culture and enjoy knowing you are not contributing to waste.
Pack your own toiletries:-
Although it can be incredibly helpful not to constantly be lugging around shampoo, conditioner, and soap, the plastic bottles in hotels are rarely reused and often end up in the trash. Though a few are changing to soap dispensers, your best bet is to bring your own toiletries so the empty bottles are not thrown out later. Fortunately, you can usually find refillable travel bottles at most drug stores. That way, you also get to take your favourite products with you!
It’s likely that as a traveller, you care about the future of our planet. Small changes can make a big difference for those who want to leave our earth for the next generation of adventurers.