In honor of Earth Day, here are our top ten ways to be environmentally responsible and save energy (and money) while traveling.
1--Pack light. You’ll save on baggage fees, use less fuel. It will be much easier to get around, and you’re more likely to benefit from tip #2.
2--Use public transportation when possible. It’s also a chance to mingle with locals. Some of our most interesting conversations have originated on buses and trains.
3--Rent a bike--low-cost rentals are available in many European cities. Canada’s Montreal has an inexpensive BIXI program. Environmentally vigilent Switzerland has a system of bicycle rentals for their 40,000 miles of trails.
4--Walk. You’ll discover things you would never notice while in traffic--and won’t feel as guilty when you indulge in the decadent local dessert.
5--Use shuttle services, like the complimentary airport transportation offered by many larger hotels.
6--Borrow guidebooks from the library. Download destination apps and maps to your smart phone or other electronic device.
7--When traveling by car, maintain your car for best performance. Be sure your tires are properly inflated and remove items you don’t need to bring along.
8--Think local. Eat locally produced foods and buy locally produced products.
9--Use a solar charger for your electronic devices. We've successfully used Powermonkey, shown here on YouTube.
10--Use a refillable water bottle. Be sure to empty it before going through airport security. You can refill it on the other side.