Eco-Friendly Summer Travel

familybeachIt’s the best time of the year!  SUMMER.  Our days will perhaps be filled with sandy toes, salty hair, waterfalls, hiking, fishing, camping, sailing and dreaming under the stars.  One thing is for certain, though, most all of us will be traveling to reach at least one of our Summer destinations.  As such, we thought we would put together some of our favorite tips on how to travel a little greener as we embark on our adventures.  (Photo credit: coastalliving.com)

Overall Eco Tips:

  1. Bring your own water bottle!  
  2. If you’re staying at a hotel, don’t have the towels washed.
  3. Pack lightly!  Don’t weigh down the car (or aircraft) as it increases fuel consumption.
  4. Use Eco Sunblock.  Most conventional sunblock is harmful to the environment (and your skin).  See our previous blog post on DIY Sunscreen to make your own.

Air Travel:

if you’re flying to your destination, try to fly on a bigger aircraft as they consume less fuel (per capacity pound mile), and try to fly non-stop.  Aircraft use the most fuel during take offs, so if you limit your take offs to two for your trip, you’re saving fuel. (justenergy.com)  From the International Council on Clean Transportation, here is a ranking of the most fuel efficient airlines:

AircraftFuelEfficienfyUSE

Car Travel:

Keep those tires inflated!  Properly inflated tires decrease fuel consumption by three to four percent.  Also, don’t be in such a rush!  Slow down and enjoy the scenery.  Reduce your speed by ten miles per hour and save around ten percent on fuel. (justenergy.com)

Eat Local:

When you eat at restaurants that source their foods locally, your food has a smaller carbon footprint, and you’re supporting the local economy!  You’ll also be experiencing the cuisine of the region you are visiting, making your experience more authentic.  Use this Eat Well Guide to find the restaurants using local foods in the area you are visiting.

…and since we are approaching the 4th of July Holiday…  Here are a few tips specifically geared toward July 4th!

  1. Repurpose your decorations.  Use fabric or cloth for decorations that you can turn into other useful items around the home.
  2. Keep the grill green.  Load the grill with veggies and if you must grill meats, buy local, grass fed, non factory farmed meats.  Also, use propane instead of charcoal, it’s three times more efficient!
  3. Having a picnic?  Bring reusable dishes and silverware instead of disposable ones.
  4. Attend a community fireworks event.  Traditional fireworks are very polluting, fraught with harmful chemicals, don’t buy or use them.

Have a fantastic Summer everyone!  We wish you safe and green travels!

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