You’ve worked hard to build the greenest possible business but somehow all of your eco-friendly habits go out the window when you travel. Sure, when you come home you try to offset the carbon footprint by planting trees and donating to Carbonfund.org.
But what can you do to reduce the carbon footprint of the trip in the first place? You know how to conserve money by using the points from your airline credit card from NerdWallet; now let’s take a look at how to conserve carbon emissions.
Book your travel with airlines that are taking measures to reduce their own carbon footprints. Greenopia–a website that rates products and businesses according to how environmentally friendly their practices are–has a handy chart for helping you figure out which airlines deserve your business.
In addition to flying, try to stay only at hotels and motels that are eco-friendly. Most hotels have made the switch from incandescent to CFLs. Look for hotels that have gone above and beyond. You want to stay in a place with a tankless water heater. You want to have to request laundry service/linen changes instead of having them provided every day automatically–you can reuse towels multiple times before washing them. You want to look for hotels that hook up the machines in their gyms to help power the building and who have green roofs.
While on site, try to walk as much as possible instead of taking cabs or renting a car. If you can’t walk, consider using the local public transit if it exists. If you have to drive, rent a hybrid vehicle to keep the environmental impact low.
You know that water bottle you carry around with you every day? Take it with you on your trip. Yes, you’ll have to empty it out before security, but you can fill it back up once you’re through.
Invest in a solar powered device charger. This way you won’t have to draw power from regular A/C outlets while you travel. It also saves you from having to buy adapters if you plan on doing any traveling overseas. The larger cells can store enough energy to power devices as large as laptops.
Bring a water clock. Unplug the hotel’s clock (saves power) and use your own water powered clock to keep time in your hotel room instead. The water powers the clock and keeps accurate time and, when you’re ready to go home, you simply dump the contents down the sink.
Eating sustainably while you travel is not nearly as difficult as it used to be. More and more restaurants are choosing to go the sustainable route (it’s a big marketing perk). Use Urban Spoon or Yelp to find sustainable eateries close to your hotel or where your meetings are being held.
Make your own food. You can buy ingredients from local stores to make food of your own. This is also good for the budget, especially if you find yourself on an extended trip and staying in a hotel with a kitchenette.
Bring your own snacks so you won’t be tempted to buy snacks out of the vending machines.
Do you travel often for business? What are some of the things you’ve done to make it more sustainable and eco-friendly?
Photo Credit By: sandiboudreau.com