With Christmas fast approaching, it’s the ideal time to stock up on those expedition essentials in preparation for your upcoming trips. But one of the best ways to travel more sustainably, is by packing responsibly. In following these top tips, you’ll be able to pack smarter and become a more responsible traveller – before you’ve even left the country!
It might seem obvious, but when considering your expedition kit list it’s important to only pack what you need! The lighter your rucksack the lighter your load on the plane (and other transport in-country) which means you’ll burn less fuel on your travels and reduce your carbon footprint. Plus, remember that whatever you bring you’ll have to carry, so save yourself the back ache and just stick to the essentials!
For most students, their expedition is the first time they’ve done anything like this and as such, think they need to go out and buy lots of expedition kit. But before you go splashing the cash on expensive items, take a look at your your wardrobe and what you already own – more often than not, you’ll already have most of the kit you’ll need! For those few things that you’re left to source, first consider borrowing them from friends, family and sometimes even school will have kit available to use or rent for your trip. Then finally, if you really do need to make a new purchase, consider shopping second-hand at charity shops or online on sites like Vinted and eBay – re-using is better for the planet and your bank balance!
By now, most of us know to carry a re-usable water bottle with us when we’re out and about, but what about those other single-use items that slip into daily life on expedition? A top tip for sustainable travellers is to go equipped with your own zero-waste kit, containing multi-use alternatives to everyday, single-use items. From those all-important water bottles, to cutlery, straws, and sanitary products.
There are a few basic items that you can take with you that don’t take up much space in your rucksack but can save you a lot of hassle while you’re away – you just need to be prepared. A reusable shopping bag is a great multi-purpose item that will not only come in handy when you’re stocking up on the teams’ supplies, but it will also double up as rucksack organisation. A travel sewing kit is always a good idea is it means you can quickly repair items when you’re overseas, preventing you from having to throw things away and buy new. And of course, a stash of bio-degradable wet wipes will be invaluable in many scenarios on expedition!
While you might think travel-sized toiletries are your best option, they’re not always best for the planet. Consider instead solid shampoo and soap bars – they last much longer and don’t leave you with an empty plastic bottle. Plus, as they’re made from natural ingredients, they don’t damage the environment when they’re washed down the drain either – much like reef-safe suncream and natural insect repellent. These eco-friendly products may cost a bit more initially, but because they last much longer, and are not full of chemicals, they are kinder to the planet, your skin, and are a worthwhile investment in the long run!