Avoid single-use plastic
Bring a reusable water bottle for destinations that offer drinkable tap water. Pack a reusable shopping bag for shopping. Say no to disposable straws and cutlery, pack a kit of cutlery to bring with you on your adventures.
Limit your laundry
Hotels and resorts are notorious water wasters. Use your bathroom towels more than once. Request less linen changes throughout your stay and if you are on a longer trip – consider bringing clothes that are reusable and versatile – and can be washed or rinsed in the bathroom sink for a refresh.
Sunscreen and Toiletries
Don’t pack just any sunscreen. Hawaii and other areas have banned specific sunscreens that contain oxybenzone and octinoxate. These two chemicals are harmful to corals and can cause coral bleaching. Look into what goes into your sunscreen prior to taking a dip in those beautiful warm waters – sunscreen labelling as ‘reef safe’ is unregulated – so look up reviews/ingredients prior to purchasing (look for a natural, biodegradable brand that does not include oxybenzone and octinaxate).
Instead of stocking up on travel sized toiletries – purchase a refillable/reusable toiletry case that offers the ability to use your own toiletries from home (look for biodegradable products). Be aware of the liquids limit in your toiletry bag – 30ml.
Choose your wildlife experience carefully
Seeking animal encounters on your travels can be an unforgettable experience. Focus on experiences where you get to observe the animals in their natural habitat – if visiting a wildlife facility, check their international certifications, if they are working with any wildlife organizations and whether they promote animal welfare policies.
Travel during off season
Not only can travelling during off season result in saving a bit of money – one of the biggest perks to travelling during this time is less tourists. Off season timing will vary depending on the location so plan accordingly. Travelling to destinations during less touristy times will support local businesses and contribute to their ability to sustain themselves year-round.
Choose a tour operator/travel agency that supports social enterprise and gives back
Choose a sustainability-conscious operator that supports social enterprise, local business and community – both at home and abroad. This helps to give back to local communities and helps ensure the places you visit are benefiting directly from tourism.