In 2020 at the height of COVID-19 with a 60% drop in aviation, the peaks of the Himalayas became visible as air pollution plummeted. Wildlife was seen in cities as people stayed home and stopped commuting. On the Island of Phuket in Thailand, turtles were seen nesting on beaches for the first time in years in the absence of tourists. Images and anecdotes like this, really hammered home how much travel and tourism impacts our environment.
Slowly but surely as we’re able to travel once again, we can look for ways to reduce our footprint. It’s in our nature to want to explore, see new places and experience other cultures. That’s why we wanted to give you a few of our top tips for planning an eco-holiday.
- Offset your flights
With flying being one of the highest ways you can increase your carbon footprint, most commercial airlines now offer a way for you to easily pay for carbon offsets to cover your flight. It’s simple and affordable to add this on at the time booking, so you can travel with greater peace of mind.
- Book an eco-escape
Over the past few years, there’s been a growing movement of eco-retreats and sustainable locations, as travellers become more conscious of how their holidays affect our planet. Eco-lodges often look at multiple ways of reducing the environmental impact from their guests – be it through recycling, renewable energy, sourcing local produce or sustainable building materials, to name a few.
If you’re looking to book your next eco-trip, how about considering the Daintree Rainforest? It’s not only believed to be one of the oldest rainforests in the world, our amazing recycling partner Schwarzkopf has teamed up with Chemist Warehouse to give you a chance to win a stay at the Daintree Ecolodge, including a Daintree River Cruise, breakfast, flights and car hire.
To get involved, all you have to do is purchase any two Schwarzkopf products at Chemist Warehouse to enter! Want to learn more – for more information, visit this website.
- Pack light
All those extra clothes you don’t end up wearing, isn’t just annoying to lug around all trip, it can also have a negative impact on the environment. Extra weight on planes burns more fossil fuels, which in turn produces more carbon. Just by dropping a few extra kilos of luggage that you don’t even need, you can make a small but impactful difference.
- Don’t travel so far
The beauty of Australia is that you don’t need to venture all that far to find yourself on a sandy beach, trekking through mountains or by a scenic lake. Sometimes we forget that we have some amazing holiday destinations within driving distance from where we live.
Cutting down on travel, not only helps the environment, but is a great way to show support for local businesses and communities. In 2020, businesses were not only impacted by COVID-19 restrictions, but many regional businesses and towns were severely hit by the bushfires. Here’s a great article from Traveller on regional towns around Australia to visit that were hit by the bushfires – read more here.
- Support small local businesses
Before you head off on your travels, it’s worth spending that extra time doing a little extra research on venues and restaurants that are small local businesses, and go to efforts to reduce their footprint.
When we go away, it’s easy to let our eco-habits slip. Make sure you don’t forget to pack a reusable bag for when you go shopping, or any reusable utensils, containers or a keep-cup so you don’t have to use single-use plastics. Also, remember, if you finish containers like toothpaste tubes, razors or shampoo bottles, you can always bring them home with you and recycle them through TerraCycle.