Travel can be wasteful and harmful to the planet but you can easily reduce your impact.
Zero waste is a lofty goal at the best of times but it gets even harder when travelling. If you can reduce your waste as much as possible it goes a long way to keeping our planet clean and beautiful.
Here are some great eco products to travel with to reduce your need for single-use plastics.
Essential Eco Products To Travel With
1. Cutlery Set
An essential for eating zero waste on the go, I always leave my cutlery set in my backpack. These handy pouches have a knife, fork, spoon, chopsticks, straw and cleaner. A set like this is super handy for eating street food or at outdoor events. I also use mine when I’m on a flight so I can refuse the disposable cutlery. The amount of plastic you can refuse by having this with you is astounding. This travel eco product is easy to carry and saves a huge amount of waste!
The refuse the straw movement has gained a lot of momentum and it’s great to see a lot of businesses not giving out plastic straws anymore. Straws have been banned in many Australian states but if you are travelling abroad you may still come across plastic & a reusable option is still better than single-use.
There are many types of straws available is materials such as silicon, metal & bamboo.
For all the coffee lovers taking your reusable cup with you on vacay will save so much waste. There are many reusable cups available now from amazing ethical companies so you can choose one to be your new favourite.
One of the easiest ways to prevent a huge amount of waste is by bringing a water bottle with you. If you are buying bottled water not only are you wasting plastic but there is the added carbon footprint of manufacturing and transport.
So many places have perfectly safe drinking water so research your destination. Even if the water isn’t safe to drink out of the tap you can often refill at your accommodation or at cafes and restaurants. If you don’t see any available it never hurts to ask. Sometimes there can be a charge for a refill but it’s a whole lot more eco-friendly than buying a bottle.
In Australia, over 30 million toothbrushes are used and disposed of each year which means approximately 1000 tonnes of landfill annually. Luckily it’s easy to switch the common plastic toothbrush for a bamboo alternative. For long-term travel take a spare for when you need to replace yours as they are not always easy to find in some regions.
The humble canvas bag is one of my favourite travel essentials. I usually travel with 3-4 which I use for shopping as well as separating clothing to be washed. I leave one in my backpack so I can grab a few items without having to worry about needing a plastic bag.
At first, I thought travelling with a container might be a bit unnecessary and a waste of space but I have changed my mind! I really love being able to make a larger portion when cooking so I have a meal ready for lunch the next day. Storage containers are a rarity in hostels so bringing my own was most definitely worth it. I also like to take one with me to cafes and restaurants in case I have extra food I can take with me.
Life Straw filters water as you drink through the straw. It makes contaminated water safe to drink by removing bacteria and parasites, preventing the majority of waterborne disease. It can be used to filter up to 4000 litres of water. They also offer water bottles with a built-in filter.
I love the Godiva Solid Shampoo Bar by Lush! Buying a solid bar instead of a bottle saves a huge amount of plastic. One bar can last for up to 80 washes which could equal two or three bottles of liquid shampoo. Lush sell metal tins to keep them in or you can use something you already have. Other products they offer as a package free alternative include conditioner, face cleanser (i love Fresh Pharmacy), soap, toothpaste, moisturiser and deodorant.
I bought a reusable pouch by Keep Leaf a few years ago and I have had so much use out of it. It folds down small enough that it’s easy to leave in my day backpack so it’s a really easy eco-product to travel with. I use it at a cafe or restaurant if I want to take something to go. I have used it for sandwiches, pizza, empanadas, cookies and cakes. It has waterproof fabric on the inside so it’s easy to turn inside out and wipe the inner surface.
Enjoy Your Eco Travels!
We hope you are inspired to travel in a more eco-friendly way and get to experience all that our beautiful world has to offer.
- Alice Kuersch