We at TreeCoin have the environment at the heart of what we do. In last week’s blog post, we talked about the importance of eco-friendly tourism. We even shared a few little-known spots for eco-tourists to visit in Paraguay.
And now, it’s that time of the year again, isn’t it? When we make plans to see friends and family. When work takes a back seat (for a little while!) and for a few weeks, it’s all about you. Whether you celebrate the festive season or it’s just a regular end-of-year vacation, you deserve it!
Depending on where you live, it could also be the perfect time for you to enjoy a different climate and weather. Many in winter-time Europe like to travel to the warm beaches of Asia, for example. And equally many in balmy Asia take the chance to enjoy a bit of a white Christmas in snowy parts of the world.
Even when enjoying ourselves, we should never forget our responsibilities towards our planet and future generations. And so, as everyone gears up for the coming holidays, here are 5 tips on how you can celebrate in an environmentally-friendly way.
1. Use a tour operator with an eco-friendly policy.
It’s 2019! If your tour operator doesn’t at least have a tiny plan or policy to improve responsible tourism or to at least have some aspects of eco-friendly tourism, you should consider changing to one. A policy basically explains how they minimize environmental impacts or even how they support the local economy.
This could be by giving you reusable bottles on your trip instead of plastic ones. Or giving you packed food using biodegradables instead of styrofoam.
2. Re-hydrate with Reusables
Buying water in plastic bottles is probably the most convenient way to stay hydrated. However, we know by now the devastating effect plastic garbage is having on our world. Because they don’t easily disintegrate, they usually end up in oceans, consumed by animals and eventually killing them.
Try to bring along a large bottle made from reusable materials. This can range from stainless steel or non-toxic BPA-free plastic. Fill up boiled filtered water from your hotel or pit stops whenever you need!
3. Take fewer, but longer holidays
We all need our breaks, and we all want to make good memories! So don’t stay at home to save the planet, but try to take fewer but longer vacations. For example, instead of travelling twice a year, try taking a single annual trip but spending twice the time.
This saves you money, and actually improves the quality of your experience. Why rush through every Instagram destination if you can thoroughly enjoy a few good spots? Take the time to meet the locals and learn the culture and eat the local cuisine. You’ll realize you have better memories to cherish and a more fulfilling experience. Isn’t that a great way to lower your carbon footprint?
4. Buy local
Wherever you are, try to buy a local alternative. Not only is it better for the local economy, but it is often better and cheaper for you! Local fruits are cheaper, fresher and more nutritious. Imported fruits are often more expensive, laden with chemicals to preserve them, and have lost a lot of nutrients.
Furthermore, the cost to transport domestic goods are far lower than those imported. Whether it’s clothing, other types of food and even souvenirs, buying imported means your purchase cost a lot of carbon emissions!
5. Leave eco-friendly footprints, not rubbish
You’ve probably seen the signboard before near beaches: “Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints”. It’s important to remember that no matter what we do, we leave an impact on the environment simply by being there. We consume water and food, we use up resources, we leave waste behind.
But we can always do our best to minimize our impact. When packing, travel as lightly as possible and remove all excess packaging around items. Waste disposal is difficult in remote places and developing countries.
Remember! As much as you need a break, remember, Mother Nature also needs a break from time to time. Wouldn’t we like our children to enjoy the same beauty we do?