Almost waste-free travels

Posted by Stephanie Mandrea on

So, we all know that travelling is not the eco-friendliest activity around. But we all get that wanderlust at some point. So if we all try and reduce our waste along the way, and that we all made the changes necessary when travelling, that carbon footprint wouldn’t be as imposing!

voyager zéro déchet

If you are travelling by plane, always make sure you check-in in advance, and ask for an e-ticket, then all you have to do is add them to your “Passbook” on your phone! Less paper and one less thing to bring along with you!

Also take good note, because all these tips can be used when travelling by car, train and bike etc.!

Here is the list of my favourite items, which I like to call the ZW Survival kit:

  •    Reusable water bottle

It might seem like an obvious one, but I can’t even begin to explain how vital this bottle actually is! I strongly recommend you get one that is made of stainless steel for it to keep your water fresh when you are in the sun all day.

Refuse any plastic bottles offered on the plane and make it a habit of filling your bottle at the airport (no need for the plastic “cups” on the flight) and when you are on the move.

  •    A utensil set

Not that I want to promote our own product here, but it was so convenient to have on hand! The main idea is to have a reusable napkin on hand that can be used to wipe off your food residue and to wrap your food. The utensil is essential when you travel; I avoided so many single-use spoons and forks with this one. Oh and make sure you don’t have the knife on you when you are at the ;)!

Serviette lunch zéro déchet

  • A snack container

If you’re a snacker, then always make sure you have your snack container with you! This way, you can avoid stopping at the corner store for food, and you’ll also be able to bring your leftovers along with you when you’re done eating at the restaurant. I prefer the Dalcini ones, they are very light and won’t keep odours.

It could also be something as simple as one of our bulk bags, but if you’re carrying leftover chili, it might not be the best idea;)!

This also means you might have to get cooking a bit before you go on your way. Granola bars, crackers and spicy maple syrup nuts are all my best travelling allies (click on the link for each recipe)

  • A Mason jar 

While this isn’t mandatory, it’s an excellent item to have with you if you are a coffee or smoothies to go fan. The Masson jar is a great idea! And no worries, you can absolutely bring it with you on board, simply make sure it’s empty when you cross the borders, but then you are free to fill it up with whatever you like in the airport.

  • Reusable grocery bag

Make sure you bring a bag that can be folded easily. It’ll be perfect for when you go do groceries, shopping or even as a beach bag!

Try to find groceries that offer some bulk options and always buy the product that is the least wrapped.

reusable market bag cotton

In your luggage

There was a time when if I was travelling, I would immediately bolt to the pharmacy to grab all the products I needed in small format! I know you know what I mean: tiny shampoo bottles, tiny deodorants, tiny cream jar etc. PLEASE DON’T!!! No judging ;) but I’m sure we all don’t need that many sunscreens, bring one that suits your face and your body, and you’re all set.

valise zéro déchet

One thing we like to do is that if you’re travelling with friends, just divide what you need to bring within the group. This way we all have lighter luggage. I like to bring a bar of shampoo, and soap that I simply wrap in a facecloth. I don’t use shaving cream, I usually just use soap or coconut oil. That same oil can be used to hydrate your skin and remove your makeup.

When it comes to clothes, all you have to do is keep it simple and make sure you bring multi-function items. You know you’ll end up wearing the same comfortable items anyways. Bring your favourite pieces, and you can always wash them in the sink if you need to. No need for 3 pairs of sandals, 1 pair with your runners is more than fine. Like I said, we end up wearing what we always do, just like at home!

I think that covers it all; I hope these tricks will help you pack light!

It’s tough to generate absolutely no waste as we do at home when travelling. I had to make some tough choices when I went on this trip (like buying a loaf of bread in a bag for sandwiches and breakfasts because there were no bakeries around!) But in the end, I know I did my absolute best to not generate any waste along the way, and sometimes you have to make do with what’s available. I didn’t want to stress out so much during my trip;)!

If you like to rent Air BnB’s like I do, which allow you to cook for yourself, it will demand a bit more planning than simply walking into the restaurant but make the best of it! Each and every single small action counts, and I love watching the waiters face when I give them my cup or my napkin. You might feel a bit strange doing it but look at it like you’re setting new trends and spreading the mission everywhere you go.

Happy travels:)!

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