Green Globetrotting: Zero-Waste Tips For The Avid Traveller
In May, SQ posted record revenue and earnings for their latest financial year. Now, that is undeniable proof that we Singaporeans have been going all out on revenge travel since the world reopened. Just take a peek at your TikTok and Instagram feed, and you’ll know what I mean.
But amid the excitement of planning your next escapade to Tokyo or exploring the wonders of Europe, let’s not forget our responsibility to the environment. It’s time to adopt zero-waste practices during our travels, and make a positive impact on our planet.
Here are some tips to help you become a more savvy and eco-conscious Singaporean globetrotter on your next holiday.
Home-made airplane snacks and reusable containers
Flying is exciting, but the in-flight snacks can be a bit of a hit or miss. Instead of tiny, plastic-wrapped snacks, why not bring your own? Make some kaya toast sandwiches or homemade kueh, and pack them in reusable food containers (just be mindful of other passengers and avoid bringing anything with strong odours). Not only is this a more satisfying snack, but you’ll also reduce single-use plastic waste. Don’t forget to bring your own cutlery too!
Power up with rechargeable batteries
In the era of gadgets and electronics, batteries are a travel essential, especially if going off the beaten path is part of your holiday itinerary (a flashlight always comes in handy). Instead of relying on disposable batteries, opt for rechargeable ones. Can save money and reduce battery waste at the same time. Don’t forget to bring your portable battery charger!
Need your travel docs? Go paperless!
Stop scrambling around searching for a printer to print your travel documents. There is no need to carry around stacks of documents and add weight to your carry-on. Nowadays, you can save everything digitally. It’s easy to have your hotel booking, boarding passes, and travel guide all on your phone. By going paperless, you’ll reduce the risk of losing important documents and help save trees along the way.
Bring your own water bottle
Staying hydrated is super important during your travels. Instead of buying bottled water at every stop, how about you bring your own reusable water bottle and fulfil your hydration needs at complimentary water dispensers in airports? (Some more, can save money leh).
If you’re a kopi or teh lover, a thermos can also be your new BFF. Fill it up with your favourite beverage before you head out, and you’ll avoid single-use cups and help reduce waste.
Put your HDB to “sleep” before heading out
Before you excitedly rush to Changi, make sure you unplug everything in an outlet. Yes, that also means the appliances and gadgets that are not switched “on”, like your lamps or standing fans. Just by being plugged in, energy is being pulled from the outlet. Of course, don’t need to switch off your fridge lah, otherwise everything inside spoil liao.
Go through your perishable food a few days before the trip
If you’re going on a long holiday, check the fridge and pantry for perishable items a few days before flying off. You’d want to eat up what’s left. Don’t worry if you can’t finish it all. Wrap meat in paper and freeze it. Peel fruits, chop them up, and freeze for smoothies when you get back. For anything else, see if your friends, housemates, or neighbours would like some. Or give your food items away on apps such as Olio that are on a mission to eliminate food waste.
Say no to freebies, hello map app
Paper maps are so yesterday. No need to struggle with folding and unfolding them like a puzzle. Navigate your way in a new city using Google Maps or Apple Maps. Nowadays, these apps can even tell you how packed a train is, and a rough estimate of your travel cost. Not only is it more convenient, but it also eliminates the need for paper maps that often end up in the trash.