5 Eco-Friendly Hacks to Make Your Next Business Trip Much Greener

It's easy being green on the road. Stay sustainable with these travel tips.

By Sean Mellon

This story originally appeared on blue & green tomorrow

Business travel can be stressful, especially if you find yourself preparing for an upcoming trip in last-minute fashion—but it doesn't have to be that way.

Follow these seven tips to plan an eco-friendly business trip that leaves you feeling relaxed and prepared rather than stressed and harried. From booking your flight to making sure you pack eco-friendly accessories, this guide will help optimize your travel experience while minimizing your environmental impact.

Use public transportation

Consider public transportation as a viable option for your next business trip. Take advantage of walking, biking, or carpooling to get to your destination whenever possible.

If you're flying or driving, purchase carbon offsets for the amount of emissions you generate when traveling on an airplane or in a car. Carbon offsets help neutralize the environmental impact generated by your transportation by investing in projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions elsewhere in the world. You can buy these offsets directly from companies who specialize in it or through organizations such as the Audubon Society and 1% for the Planet.

When planning out your itinerary, choose hotels with eco-friendly practices such as locally sourced food and furniture made from recycled materials, take shorter showers, and reuse towels during your stay.

Book green hotels

When you book your hotel, be sure to ask if they are green-certified by the Green Hotel Association. The Green Hotel Association's standards require that at least 30% of the building's power come from renewable sources, that the water is sourced sustainably, and that they have recycling programs and eco-friendly amenities. Other things to consider when booking a hotel include getting an environmentally friendly or hybrid car rental or using public transportation when possible. Also, be sure to eat vegetarian meals in the airport so as not to add more meat products into your diet while travelling. Finally, stay tuned for our next blog post on how to plan an eco-friendly trip.

Bring Reusable Containers

Pack a lunch in your reusable containers, but check the airline's policy on what you can bring on board before packing any food.

If you have the option to do so, choose an economy class seat, as they usually have more room and are less expensive. Give yourself plenty of time at the airport by arriving 2 hours early for domestic flights and 3 hours early for international flights. This will allow you to go through security faster if there is a line and give you more time to relax before boarding. At the airport, opt for carpooling or public transportation. Avoid parking spaces that charge per hour or day because this costs more than paying for parking closer to your departure terminal. And last but not least: never buy bottled water.

Reduce paper waste

Planning an eco-friendly business trip? Here are seven tips to help you reduce paper waste.

Bring only the essentials with you in your carry-on bag. Use reusable water bottles, coffee mugs and travel cups when possible. Consider a digital camera instead of film cameras or disposable cameras. Use recycled paper products such as napkins, toiletries, printing paper, and tissue boxes. Request a printed itinerary instead of handing out copies at meetings. Choose hotels that offer recycling services for things like laundry detergent, soap, shampoo, and lotion. Turn off lights when not needed during daytime hours.

Avoid single-use plastics

If you're traveling for business, there are many ways to avoid single-use plastics. Some ideas include bringing your own coffee mug, water bottle, and utensils for eating. If you'll be staying in a hotel, pack a small toiletry bag that's made of natural materials like cloth or hemp. You can also request an eco-friendly room when booking the reservation.

If you're staying at someone else's house, bring items from your home so that you don't have to use disposable ones such as cups, plates, silverware, or plastic grocery bags.

Bringing reusable bags with you is always a good idea; this way, if something spills or breaks, it won't go into the environment right away.

Bring your own toiletries

Bringing your own toiletries can also help you to be more eco-friendly. Not only will this reduce the waste you create, but it will also save you money on costly travel toiletries. You may want to bring shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothpaste, and even a razor. This way, you won't have to buy these items when you arrive at your destination and can use what is already in your bag. It's worth mentioning that some hotels do offer complimentary soaps, shampoos, etc., so check before packing up all of those bottles.

Make Sure To Bring A Reusable Water Bottle: When traveling for business trips, we're usually encouraged to drink lots of water to stay hydrated. With bottled water being so expensive at airports or gas stations, bringing a reusable water bottle is an economical way to stay hydrated and environmentally friendly.

Do some research

The Philippines is one of the most popular destinations for eco-friendly business travellers, and it's not hard to see why. The country has a lot to offer in terms of natural beauty, local culture, and wonderful cuisine. A Cebu travel package makes it easy to explore everything this incredible country has to offer while still maintaining your eco-friendly values.

Cebu is known for its modernized buildings and scenic neighborhoods, but there are also plenty of opportunities for nature lovers to explore.

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