There’s no doubt about it: everyone needs to be living in a more sustainable way to protect the future of our planet. However, we also know how overwhelming it can be to know where to start, feeling like you have to make so many changes at once that you end up taking no action at all.
Here at Oliver’s Travels, we’re already taking crucial steps to lower our carbon footprint, working with ecollective to track our progress over time. This is because we truly believe that, little by little, we can all make a difference. To help you get started too, we’ve decided to share some of our top sustainability tips to live a more eco-friendly life in 2023.
1. Eat local produce
When it comes to top sustainability tips, food is something we often gloss over. However, the worldwide distribution of food and the wastage caused by restaurants and cafes is a huge contributor to CO2 emissions. An easy way to improve your carbon footprint is to say no to shipped fruits and avoid the international foods aisle, instead opting for seasonal produce from trustworthy sellers and farmers’ markets. And, if you’re feeling really inspired, why not get green-fingered by growing your own fruit and veg? You’ll enjoy the freshest food while cutting down on plastic bags and packaging in the process.
At Oliver’s Travels, we’re all about living like a local when travelling abroad. That’s why so many of our luxury villas are within walking distance of food markets and authentic restaurants, allowing you to support the local community throughout your holiday.
Eco tip: Use your leftover peels to make compost in your allotment – an easy way to achieve a completely zero-waste meal!
2. Cut down on excess water
By now, we all know that we should be cutting down on plastics and non-recyclable materials, but cutting down on our water usage is easy to forget. The more we use in our homes, the more energy that’s required, which ultimately increases pollution and the need for fuel resources.
However, the good news is that it’s really easy to keep sustainability in mind and reduce your water usage – simply turn off the tap when you’re not using it! That means not leaving it running while cleaning your teeth, and only turning it on right before hopping into the shower. And when it comes to the kitchen, you have your own eco-warrior waiting for you – the dishwasher. This handy appliance uses less water than washing up by hand, especially if you put it onto eco-mode.
Unfortunately, not everything is dishwasher friendly, so if you do end up using more water than you wanted while washing up that non-stick pan, make sure to reuse it for something like watering the lawn.
Eco tip: Switch to eco-friendly washing-up products like Method to keep from polluting your excess water.
3. Forget fast fashion
The fast fashion industry may seem cost-effective, but its impact on the planet is unmistakably negative. Cheap clothes encourage the wear-once-and-throw-away mentality, but even if you do keep them for longer, the plastic fibres used in synthetic fabrics pollute the oceans through every wash.
That’s why it’s important to shop with sustainable brands like People Tree, who use eco-friendly materials such as organic cotton, lyocell and responsible wool. Prices can be a little steeper up front, but these items are often handmade and of higher quality, meaning they will last a lot longer than fast fashion items. Think of them as a long-term investment! Alternatively, you can try shopping at second-hand and vintage stores, or use clothing rental companies to keep up with the ever-changing trends.
Eco tip: Instead of throwing away clothes, take them to the charity shop to be reused, or upcycle them into cushion covers or patchwork quilts!
4. Help on holiday
Holidays can cause a lot of ‘green guilt’ but there are many ways to stay eco-friendly on your travels. For those choosing to fly, why not check out some green airlines? Studies have also shown that daytime flights can emit less CO2, so choosing your flight time wisely can make a small difference. Looking to cut out the aeroplane altogether? We also have a collection of holidays by train to choose from.
Then, when you arrive at your destination, consider opting for public transport rather than a car. You could rent some bikes and go on family excursions, or hop on the bus to visit local attractions.
Eco tip: Beach days can be sustainable too! Use eco-friendly suncream while you lounge by the sea and be sure to pick up your rubbish before you leave.
5. Go paperless for the planet
Although it’s recyclable, paper has become an unnecessary commodity – but also one that’s simple to cut back on. When at work, think twice before you use the printer, swap notebooks for online planners, and get rid of those sticky notes! And back home, avoid make-up wipes and cotton pads, instead choosing a reusable washcloth, and similarly trade in kitchen roll for a tea towel.
Eco tip: Even if you can’t give up wrapping paper just yet, you can also recycle metals or items containing metal that you don’t need anymore.
Sounds easy, right? With these five simple sustainable tips, you’ll be achieving eco-warrior status in no time! And, to continue that good work abroad, we’ve pulled together a collection of sustainable villas to choose from. Our concierge team are available to help you with your booking so don’t hesitate to contact them with any queries!