For travelers who live a sustainable lifestyle, it can be difficult to admire the beauty of the planet without causing strain on the Earth. Here are some tips that can help individuals be more sustainable travelers. 

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Planes, trains, automobiles, or buses?

The amount of fuel consumed per passenger varies based on the mode of transportation. Airplanes use the most fuel, followed by cars, then trains, and finally, buses. Even when flying, travelers can take public transportation to the airport to reduce emissions.

Taking off and climbing to cruising altitude are the most fuel-intense parts of the flight, so choosing non-stop flights is easier on the environment than short-haul flights or those that involve multiple connections.

Passengers can avoid using the restroom on the plane whenever possible and save more fuel. It is estimated that each in-flight flush requires the amount of energy necessary to drive a car six miles!


Bring your own refillable drink containers to decrease the amount of waste produced while away from home. Most airports and train stations have refillable water stations, or when that isn’t an option, some coffee shop employees are glad to refill water bottles. Consider taking your own reusable covered cup for hot beverages to reduce the need for disposable cups.

Bring your own snacks in reusable containers to decrease the amount of trash produced. Many airlines only recycle aluminum cans - every other material, even if recyclable at home, gets thrown in the trash!

Pack light! By reducing the weight of luggage, you reduce the fuel demand for the chosen mode of transport.

Choose clothing that can be worn for multiple days and that can be easily washed and hung to dry.

Bring your own toiletries to reduce the amount of waste at a hotel. Shampoo bars and soap bars in reusable tins or small refillable bottles help prevent plastic pollution from all those tiny toiletries in hotel rooms. Many hotels or hosts already supply hairdryers, further having space in luggage and reducing the weight of items.

Use the hotel towels to cut down on luggage weight but be mindful to re-use them by hanging them up to cut down on laundry waste.


Stay in home rental accommodations - these use less electricity and water than hotels because of the extra spaces in hotels (hallways, elevators, lobby).

Seek eco-friendly hotels - many publish their sustainable practices like recycling, water-efficient bath fixtures, green laundry practices, eco-friendly lighting, and green housekeeping products.

Remember to turn off the lights and A/C every time you leave your room. The best conservation is not using electricity!