Eco-Friendly Travel Tips
Did you know that RV travel is a greener travel choice? It’s true. RV family vacations result in fewer carbon emissions than traditional fly/drive/hotel vacations, according to a PKF Consulting study.
Here are some things you can do to go even greener on your next RV trip:
Go green before you leave
In the excitement of planning for your trip, it’s easy to forget about the homefront. However, it pays to plan your vacancy just as carefully as you do your itinerary. Your home still uses energy even when you’re not there. Follow these tips to keep waste to a minimum (and trim your expenses):
- Unplug your devices. Electronics still draw power even when turned off. Pull the plug on your TV, microwave, computers and other unnecessary appliances and gadgets. If you are going to be gone for an extended period and plan to unplug your empty fridge, be sure to prop its doors open so you don’t come home to a moldy mess.
- Set your thermostat. Keep your heat or air conditioning set to minimum to prevent energy waste. If you will be leaving pets at home keep their needs in mind. To prevent frozen pipes in winter, set your thermostat between 56 to 58 degrees Fahrenheit.
Green Your Vehicle
Keeping your vehicle well maintained helps it run more efficiently and reduces your carbon footprint. Follow your manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule, keep your fluids topped off, and be sure to inflate your tires properly for optimal fuel efficiency.
Good driving habits can improve fuel economy by up to 33 percent. One of the best things you can do is to obey the speed limit. Remember, you’re on vacation, so what’s the hurry anyway?
Do your best to avoid aggressive and impulsive driving, too. Anticipating your next move and the actions of other drivers can help you drive more efficiently. Screaming up to a red light and coming to a screeching halt doesn’t save a moment of time, but it does burn lots of extra fuel and puts wear and tear on your brakes. Instead, look ahead and coast when possible.
Adopting a Green Travel Lifestyle
RV travel isn’t just about driving. It’s a lifestyle. Here are some ways to go green while on the road:
- Eat green. Avoid fast food as much as you can. Most fast food is not very healthy and generates a huge amount of waste in the form of disposable cups, containers and flatware. Instead, take advantage of your RV kitchen to eat healthier and make more sustainable choices. Make it a point to seek food co-ops and farmers’ markets for locally grown food wherever you go. You will be delighted at the fresh flavor adventures!
- Most rest areas now have recycling bins, making it easy to dispose of household waste responsibly.
- Green laundry on the go. Laundromat washing is expensive and energy intensive. Besides, who wants to spend their vacation in the laundromat? If you are planning an extensive trip, consider investing in a mini washer and dryer. These inexpensive, super-compact appliances take very little space, and use up to 100 times less energy than conventional machines. Not only will you save money and energy, but you’ll have more time to enjoy your vacation.
As you can see, going green while on the road is not difficult; by being mindful and taking small steps to conserve resources, you can make your next trip your greenest ever. Won’t that make your vacation even more enjoyable?
Corey Tournet is the owner of The Laundry Alternative, a company that specializes in extremely energy efficient, compact, lightweight and inexpensive washing machines and dryers that are perfect for campers, apartments, and traveling.
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