In 2017, Canadians made over 20 million overnight trips to America. This was a rise of almost 5% compared to the three years preceding it. This is not only an expensive way of travelling, it contributes significantly to carbon emissions. In cases where this travel is used as part of a break, there are plenty of cheaper and more sustainable ways of having some time out. One option is to make the most of being at home. If you are planning on getting away, here are some pointers on how to make it more eco-friendly and affordable.
Go green with your transport
The most eco-friendly way to travel is of course by foot. Cycling is also a sustainable choice. If traveling by car really is the only option for you, research the range of vehicles that suit your needs and are the most eco-friendly. Otherwise try to travel in groups or on public transport. The train is a good option as it has a relatively low carbon footprint and can accommodate hundreds of passengers at one time. Canada’s own Via Rail recently made a commitment to making their transport as sustainable as possible, something that should hopefully encourage more people to travel this way.
Find eco-friendly accommodation
Despite the increase in short trips from Canada to America, there have also been encouraging signs about Canadians’ attitudes towards sustainable living. When the United Nations made 2017 the International Year of Sustainable Living, over Over 60% of Canadians wanted to use eco-conscious accommodation on their travels. This figure is nearly double the number of those who used eco accommodation the year before. This doesn’t necessarily mean living in anything basic; rather, in places that that have a more ‘green’ focus, with features such as energy-saving light bulbs, controlled heating and low flowing water appliances. Little things can make a big difference.
Ditch the plastic
The way things are at the moment, by 2050 there will be more plastic in the oceans than fish. It is more important than ever that we all make an effort to consider the environment. When it comes to travel, there are many simple things we can do to reduce our use of plastic. For example, take reusable drink holders when out and about and fill them with drinking water. Avoid the need for plastic bags by taking tote bags with you when shopping. Take your own toiletries so you don’t use all those tiny bottles of shampoo, conditioner and lotion.
Cheaper and sustainable travel doesn’t mean compromising on fun
There are plenty of ways in which to travel that promote sustainable living and do not have to burn a hole in your budget. The key is to do your research into eco-friendly options in all aspects of your traveling, whether it be means of transport, accommodation or day-to-day self-care.