Ah, the joys of travel.                      

Not only do we have to deal with the hassles of flying, but other healthy habits such as diet and exercise often fly out the window, adding to our level of frustration and fatigue.

I know it can be very hard to maintain our eco-friendly ways while on the road. We tend to opt for convenience when crunched for time, or when we’re tired and far from home.

Still, it is possible, and needn’t take too much effort.

So here are my tips on How to Travel Green:


Stay Hydrated

While it’s definitely important to stay hydrated while traveling, I think it’s equally important to consider the type of bottle you’re drinking out of.

Yet, how does one maintain proper fluid intake without going through gallons of water packaged in plastic bottles?

My method isn’t foolproof, but here it is:  I travel with a stainless steel water bottle. I empty it prior to passing through airport security, then request a refill at the nearest Starbucks.

A friend of mine gave me this tip a few years ago, and it really works!

Your second option is to buy bottled water, refill the stainless steel bottle, and then recycle the plastic container in the nearest recycle bin.

It may not always be possible to find a recycle bin, but I think this is more about doing what you can. Every little bit helps!

Remember – you’re travelling. It isn’t going to be perfect. If it comes down to choosing between quenching your thirst and staying ‘green’ – personally, I would choose the water every time.


Linens & Things

Have you noticed that more and more hotels are giving you an option whether to have your sheets and towels changed on a daily basis?

Sure, the luxury and pampering that comes with fresh linens every night is definitely nice, but is it really necessary?

When you arrive at your hotel, look for a card near the bed that asks you to please leave said card on the pillow, and housecleaning will simply remake the bed without changing the sheets.

It’s actually a win/win situation, as the hotel will benefit greatly from a reduced laundry bill!


Toiletries and Such

I love arriving at my hotel and checking out the little bottles of shampoo, conditioner, etc., in the hotel bath – they feed my weakness for cute, little things.

It’s even better when the hotel has conscientiously chosen eco-friendly products that are free of parabens, sulfates, phthalates and other harmful ingredients, such as the ZERO% products pictured above.

However, I also think it’s important to not waste these products.

Therefore, if you’ve chosen to use any of those cute little bottles of shampoo and conditioner, please consider taking the unused portion home with you.


The Air You Breathe

The Westin Hotel chain boasts a healthy environment by choosing to be smoke-free.

That’s definitely a good approach.

Any accommodations that are restful, calming and free of toxins will surely leave you revitalized for the next leg of your journey.

When you can, choose to stay in a hotel that honors the same principals you practice at home.

It’s really that simple.


Reduce, Re-Use, Recycle

If you do this at home, there’s no reason you can’t continue the habit while you travel.

As I mentioned earlier, when you need to purchase bottled water along the way (and invariably, you will) try to make a point of recycling the bottles whenever possible.

Another trick I’ve used for many years is to always travel with a supply of Ziploc bags. These come in handy for many things.

Yes, I know this isn’t exactly a ‘green’ tip – it’s plastic, after all. But sometimes there has to be a trade-off and this is one of those times. Rather than let things go to waste why not pop them into a baggie and extend their life? (The baggie ensures leak-free travel).

By re-purposing what you can, and leaving behind a smaller footprint, you will be doing your share to travel Green.