To travel is to escape - Escape the mundane, the ordinary, the everyday. We all want to make the great escape meaningful and enriching. In 2020, sustainability is a large part of making our vacations meaningful. It’s about travelling without any concessions on the experience, but making it responsible, by making sure that we do not hurt the environment, the culture, that we travel with our morals and ethics intact.
A place is hardly ever the same once you leave, even when it looks the same to the naked eye. The key to responsible travel is to make your absence felt, not your presence. Utopiic bridges the gap between sustainability and luxury.
Here are some first steps to greener travelling:
1. Self Sustenance Begins With Your Cup Of Coffee
Most of our daily plastic usage is unconscious. Imagine millions of travel plans being made every day, now imagine those many plastic toothbrush purchases everyday. While hygiene is key, investing in a bamboo toothbrush instead is a more sustainable and informed choice for all the travel toiletry kits in the making. From your toothbrush to your beach towel, everything has a sustainable alternative.
2. Self Sustenance Begins With Your Cup Of Coffee
Carry your personal coffee mugs, flasks and bottles everywhere you go. While this may seem unnecessary, if practiced on a large scale by the masses, it can reduce a huge proportion of disposable usage in the world. This comes handy now more than ever during the time of a global pandemic when disinfecting surfaces is the need of the hour and carrying personal belongings is definitely a safer bet.
3. Reconsider Your Means Of Transportation
They say that it's not about the destination, but the journey. Hence it is imperative to make the journey eco-friendly and green. While getting transported from one place to another, there is no right or wrong but there is always better or worse. Air travel should be reconsidered by train usage, road travel should mean carpooling, and hiking and cycling should make a comeback for the lazy.
4. A New Screening Process For Your Hotels
While budget and luxury have been the top two deciding factors while choosing your stay, a new lens to look for a hotel is sustainability. Whether the hotel has in place solar energy, rain water harvesting, if there is a no plastic policy, or whether there are energy saving lights installed are crucial things that should be kept under consideration while making your pick. You’ll be happily surprised at how many luxury boutique hotels are winning on the green front, so do not worry about limited choices!
5. Go Digital (Mindfully)
Brochures, tickets, maps and boarding passes have always existed in the form of paper, but some paranoid travellers continue the use of paper even when the world has shifted to digital. Use E-boarding pass, Electronic tickets, and websites instead of physical brochures. For those who wish to collect tickets as souvenirs, the best kind of memories exist in your mind, not paper!
6. A Tote A Day Keeps Non-biodegradability At Bay
While doing the grocery store runs or while check marking the endless vacation shopping lists, a reusable tote bag should accompany you at all times. Consider it a fashion statement on top of a bio-friendly replacement to the plastic/paper bags that are a serious threat to the environment. Also consider carrying multiple totes to the beach or picnics and hikes, so that you can collect and bring back your disposables instead of littering!
7. Local Is The New Global
Support the native communities to meet their target audience. One of the best things you can do for the environment is to treat locals like the new global. Supporting their art, craft over mcdonalised mass products is a great way of saving the environment. Buying locally produced products as souvenirs are a much more thoughtful gift and would go a long way in the conservation of cultures and traditions!
While travelling, there are innumerable sustainable hacks that one can embrace. Utopiic urges its members to rethink every travel decision and too see it from the lens of sustainability and positivity. The above mentioned hacks are only a starting point to a far larger discourse on green choices on the road. Utopiic breaks the myth that in order to be sustainable, you have to let go of luxury, become a Utopiian and make sustainability and luxury go hand in hand.