09 Jul

Six ways to reduce, reuse and recycle on your summer holiday

Find out how to win a carry-on bag by sustainability leaders Patagonia by making a pledge to reduce, reuse and recycle on your next holiday here: http://bit.ly/2YEpeqYThis blog is written for Make Holiday Greener, ABTA’s campaign in partnership with Travelife.

There are many areas where we can improve the impact of our holidays, from reducing or offsetting our journey footprint to buying local.  

One area that many of us are now looking at in our everyday lives is reduce, reuse and recycle, whether that’s using reusable bags on our weekly shop or composting leftover food waste. In addition to doing our bit at home, we can also help to reduce our waste when on holiday. This blog will offer some tips and hints on how to lower your impact during your next holiday, and what to look out for in your hotel or accommodation provider.

Look for the Travelife logo
If you’re not sure what your hotel or accommodation is doing to reduce, reuse and recycle, ask about their sustainability actions. Look out for the Travelife logo when planning your holiday by visiting the Travelife Collection  to book an accommodation provider that cares about people and the environment.

Avoid food waste
The hotel buffet is often a chance to indulge in treats and food favourites. Make the most of yours by taking a close look at what’s on offer, this will help you decide what you would like to eat, and will also help you avoid filling your plate with food you might not end up eating, hence avoiding food waste. If the buffet has unlimited refills, you can always go back. 

Sunrise Royal Makadi Aqua Hotel in Egypt encourages guests to reduce food waste by displaying posters in their restaurants showing the weight of food wasted the previous day. Look out for what your hotel or accommodation is doing to reduce food waste, and how you can get involved.

If you are staying at a self-catered accommodation, be sure to plan ahead to make sensible food choices. Find your local food market or supermarket, and buy little and often. Your plans may change, so plan your food shop carefully to avoid waste and make the most of local produce. 

Carry your own
Whether you’re by the pool, on the beach or on an excursion, it’s worth carrying your own to help reduce your waste and lower your impacts. Take your own backpack and reusable water bottle to avoid unnecessary waste. Some hotels offer free refills for drinks, served straight into your bottle. Etu Moana Hotel in the Cook Islands provide complimentary backpacks and bike hire encouraging guests to reduce their footprint, so it’s worth finding out what’s on offer at your accommodation.

Recycle and avoid plastic
It’s not as easy to recycle on holiday as it is when we’re at home. If you’re staying at a hotel, look out for recycling bins and don’t be afraid to ask what recycling facilities are available. Try to separate your waste where possible, and familiarise yourself with your nearest bins. If there are no recycling facilities on offer, try to reduce your waste by avoiding single use plastic, saying no to straws and reusing your cup whenever you order a drink on holiday. Your feedback could help change their mind on plastic!

Get involved!
Look out for any waste related campaigns or activities your hotel or accommodation are involved in to do your bit on holiday. Adaaran Hotels in the Maldives invited guests to join a beach clean, gathering plastic from their beaches, which was used to create their Christmas tree. You could also run your own activity by gathering litter as you walk along the beach or on an excursion, and encourage your friends and family to take part. A great way to get all the family involved in holiday action!Make your voice heard
You can also make a difference and support your holiday destination by making your voice heard about waste issues at your hotel or accommodation. Use customer feedback forms or surveys to tell your accommodation provider what you think they are doing well and what could be done better. Be a champion in responsible tourism and share your stories!

What’s the industry doing about it?
Individual choices can make a big difference, but you are not alone. Travel companies, hotels and destinations are taking action to reduce, reuse and recycle, from moving away from single use plastic to creative upcycling.  Read their stories here.

What else could you do?
Make a pledge to reduce, reuse, and recycle here: http://bit.ly/2YEpeqY

Why not also challenge yourself to take one of our other 15 pledges for Make Holidays Greener. You can choose pledges such as reducing or offsetting your journey footprint, buying local, going meat-free or only staying in Travelife certified hotels on your next holiday, visit:  http://bit.ly/2YEpeqY

Share your actions on social media using #MHG19

Check out our infographic for more simple tips on how you can ‘Reduce, Reuse and Recycle’ before going on holiday, en-route, while you’re away and when you return home.