Discovering the world is a dream for many people. It used to be a privilege of the rich and mighty people before low-cost airlines and cheap accommodation websites have stepped in. Today, thanks to the Internet, you can easily get to any city in the world and find a cheap place to sleep in.
Of course, this couldn’t but affect the environment. Millions of tourists migrate from one city to another by air, buses, and cars, consume irresponsibly, and leave tons of plastic behind, making excessive traveling dangerous for our planet. At the same time, when you travel for the first time, you get addicted immediately. You can’t give up on it. Therefore, sustainable traveling is the only way to keep discovering the world while hurting the planet a lot less. It is, however, more expensive.
Do Not Forget About Student Discounts
Sustainable traveling is still traveling. Then, why not benefit from each of your next trips? To do that, join as many travel rewards programs as possible when you plan your trip. If you are used to using promo codes and discounts from essay writing services, then why not give it a try and earn some rewards as a traveler?
Banks, airlines, car rental services offer lots of opportunities to save money on traveling. All you need to do is to subscribe to their loyalty programs or use their branded cards. The more you travel and spend, the more benefits you receive.
When you book hotels, tickets, museums, and activities, never forget that you are a student. Get prepared and order an ISIC card on campus to prove your student status whenever you go abroad. This thing really helps in saving money on your trip. Some travelers admit that thanks to student discounts, they managed to cut around 15-20% of their total costs per trip.
You can spend savings from student discounts, special offers, and rewards on enhancing the sustainability of your trip. For example, take a train instead of a plane whenever it’s possible and use electric vehicles to drive around a city.
Filter the Needs From Wants
The first rule of making your travel adventure affordable while keeping it sustainable is to decide what you actually need. New emotions and experiences are what you chase in your trip. However, little things do count. You need to weigh your perceptions of comfort and preferences against your budget and decide what you can sacrifice to reach the ultimate goal.
At the same time, do not forget about sustainability. Be conscious about the activities you choose to pursue. Plan what it is that you really want to see and experience. For example, make sure you participate in responsible wildlife tourism that doesn’t hurt any animal. Make sure that while snorkeling or scuba diving, you do not cause damage to the fragile ecosystem.
Research Your Route
Saving your budget while remaining conscious of the environment is a difficult task. Everyone knows that adding a stopover in a new city will save money because indirect flights are usually cheaper than direct ones. However, such travels are not sustainable at all. Give your preference to direct flights to avoid doubling your carbon emissions per passenger.
Countries and states are huge, so you may not have enough time (and resources) to see everything they are famous for. Thus, you should decide what sights are your top priorities. To get to them, go on foot or use bikes whenever it is possible. If not, use public transportation. This is the most sustainable option. Also, consider ‘slow traveling,’ choose to not migrate and stay longer in certain destinations.
Find a Cheaper and More Environmentally-Friendly Place to Stay
As for accommodation, renting a room or BnB could be a perfect solution for you. Ecobnb, and other companies offer a wide choice of locally-owned homes for you to stay for a reasonable price. Using these services, you can find a great place in almost every city across the world.
Some people let travelers stay at their places for free. If you do not mind having a conversation, you can use websites like Couchsurfing to find a host. However, if you prefer to stay in a hotel but wish to save money on your accommodation, you can look for hostels or guesthouses. However, do check whether the hotel of your choice has green certifications. This proves that their owners care about the environment and try to operate their business in a sustainable way.
Cook at Home
You can really cut your overall expenses if you choose to cook at home. Hostels, guesthouses, and rooms rented via services like Ecobnb usually list kitchens among publicly available places. Thus, allowing you to have access to all kitchenware and can store your groceries in the fridge.
If you have a nice breakfast at home and then buy some snacks during the day, the only big expense you’ll have is your dinner. You can either eat out at a local restaurant or cook food at home again. Yet, we strongly encourage you to eat local food and buy local groceries. Transported fruit and vegetables cause carbon emissions. By eating local cuisine, you support small restaurants and farmers that produce and serve organic food. Also, avoiding all-inclusives and choosing to cook at home (recycling and waste sorting included) will help you make your travel experience more sustainable.
Be Eco-friendly When Shopping
Shopping is important when traveling, but if you want to make it sustainable, purchase only local products. Sometimes, country-based products can indeed maximize your savings while making your travel a more rewarding and conscious experience.
For example, you need to buy souvenirs. Most of those you’ll see are imported from China. If you strive to be eco-friendly, go the extra mile and look for local ones. Should you be looking for new clothes, don’t get yourself tricked by marketers. Apply the rule “one in, one out” if you want to buy something: one of your current clothes goes away to charity each time you buy a new one. Sich a discipline actually helps you meet your budget goals as well.
Once you try traveling, you never give up doing it. Discovering new places will become your addition and true passion. Yet, students should remember that they have duties and a budget to stick to. If you approach traveling responsibly, you’ll get a chance to live a more rewarding experience. First of all, you’ll be more focused on local products and foods. Secondly, you’ll discover each place longer and more consciously, collecting beautiful memories. Thirdly, you’ll sleep in peace knowing that you leave the smallest environmental footprint possible.
- Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash
- Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash