[dropcap]T[/dropcap]raveling is an important part of many people’s lives; however, travel can take up a huge amount of the earth’s natural resources, pollute the air, and consume a lot of energy. But, that doesn’t mean that you should forget about booking that trip you’ve been dreaming of for the last few months (or years!). In fact, there are several things that you can do as a traveler to become more environmentally friendly and responsible whilst you explore.

We’ve listed some simple steps to help you become more aware of the impact of your own travels on the planet, and what you can do to reduce your travel carbon footprint.

plane over sunset

Step #1. Book Nonstop Flights

Unless there is no direct flight available, avoiding changing flights will help you to reduce the amount of carbon emissions produced during your trip. Although booking a journey with flight changes may seem tempting if it is likely to be cheaper, it’s vital to understand that it’s during take-off and landing that the most environmental damage is done by an aircraft. In addition, take-off and landing are the most dangerous parts of an airplane journey; the more often you do this, the higher your risk of being involved in an accident.

Step #2. Hire an Electric Car

The great thing about traveling today is that there are so many options available to help you get the most out of your trip. For example, car hire is available in almost any country that you might be considering visiting. Usually anybody over the age of 25 with a full driver’s license can hire a car. However, bear in mind that the more often you drive, the more carbon emissions and pollution you will be personally responsible for. But, don’t worry – there’s no need to walk everywhere or get the bus. Electric or hybrid cars are a far eco-friendlier option and are offered by most good car rental companies.

Step #3. Choose Your Hotel Wisely

When looking for accommodation for your vacation, the location and other facilities offered by your hotel can help to reduce your travel carbon footprint. For example, choosing a hotel such as ChateauBeauvallon.com which is located closely to local amenities, activities and more means that you’ll need to travel around less to get to where you want to be. In addition, look for hotels that have a strict recycling program and take energy efficiency seriously. Not only will this help to reduce the amount of environmental damage caused by your travels, you may also get a cheaper deal.

Step #4. Track Your Personal Energy Use

During your trip, it’s a good idea to keep track of your own personal energy use. For example, consider how long you have had the lights turned on in your hotel room or how often you are using appliances such as microwaves, coffee machines, televisions or laptops. Simple changes, for example sending your hotel bedding and towel to be cleaned every other day rather than daily, can add up to make a huge difference.
How do you reduce your travel carbon footprint? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.