It’s no secret that we need to do more to help save the planet. It’s also no secret that it can be hard to find ways to make your trips easier on the environment. This list of eco-friendly travel gadgets should help.
But first, why do we need to be more mindful of the environment when we travel anyway?
How Travel Harms the Environment (and What You Can Do About It)
Everyone knows that flying is generally pretty bad for the environment. But there are ways to lessen your carbon emissions when you travel by plane.
The best way, of course, is to not to fly unless you can help it. For those who must, you can fly “eco” with a company that offers green flights. British Airways just changed its logo color to reflect that it now offers what it calls environmentally-friendly flights, and Air New Zealand launched a new “FlyNeutral” initiative that allows customers to offset carbon emissions.
If you want to make small changes that can have a big impact, start with your travel routine. If you replace the plastic water bottles you take on trips with reusable ones, that will eliminate not only the waste created by those empty bottles but also all of the waste that goes into transporting them.
Another small change that makes a big impact is by using public transport to get to the airport. If you live near the train station, why not take public transport to the airport rather than driving? You can also take public transportation while you’re visiting your destination if it’s an option.
From reusable alternatives like salt and pepper shakers to clotheslines to solar-powered chargers, here are some helpful gadgets for making this planet a little happier.
1. Travel Clotheslines
Travel clotheslines are a simple tool that provides the ability to hang any heavy or wet clothes, making them dryer and less wrinkled. These lines can be hung from hooks, doors, balconies, fences—anything you can find to hang your items on—by using a small piece of wire.
As you won’t need to use expensive and energy-consuming washing and drying services, travel clotheslines may help you save money while also conserving energy at the same time.
2. Reusable Salt and Pepper Shakers
Every year, Americans throw away enough single-use plastics to circle the earth four times. That’s an astonishing amount of waste that can’t be recycled and ends up in landfills or oceans. One of the most needless products is the single-use salt or pepper sachet.
Carrying a reusable travel-sized salt and pepper shaker set is a simple way to cut down on your use of single-use packaging waste while traveling. These reusable containers are made with a closing mechanism that makes them ideal for traveling, so you don’t need to worry about making a mess in your bags.
3. Reusable Drinking Straws
Another big offender in the single-use product category is the disposable straw. Whether you’re going out to a restaurant, pub, or the movies, it’s almost guaranteed you’ll be offered a plastic straw. It can be hard to refuse these disposable straws as they are so conveniently available.
However, you can eliminate your use of plastic drinking utensils by bringing along reusable drinking straws. They come in a variety of materials from stainless steel to glass and bamboo. The best part is they all fit inside your purse or pocket for easy transportation.
4. Solar Powered Chargers
If you’re traveling abroad, things like your tablet or phone can die quickly. With solar-powered chargers, you don’t need to worry about finding a plug around every corner.
Choose a model which is made with strong monocrystalline cells, which are more efficient than other types of solar cells. They’ll take less time to fully charge devices, including smartphones.
Green Means Go!
If all of these environmental considerations have made you want to purchase or create more green products to make our world greener and healthier, take a second to pause first. Remember that the most effective ways to eliminate waste are to reduce the number of things you buy and to reuse what you already have.
Doing these things may not be easy but they are important to our planet’s future. Consider what others have contributed before us and try to leave things better than how you found them.
If, however, you can’t refuse or reuse, these eco-friendly gadgets will put you on track to becoming a greener traveler.