Packing Tips for Sustainable Travel
Updated: Mar 6, 2018
The best way to travel is light, eco-friendly, and sustainably. This is an article with Tips and advice on packing, environemntally conscious products, and investing in durable gear.
1. Invest in Quality! Trends come and go, fashion is always changing. When it comes to traveling, you are constantly in a new place, exploring a new culture, getting a read on a new pulse. Fashionable in your hometown doesn’t matter.
Invest in clothes that you feel good in, ones that you know will stand up to the tests of long bus rides, dusty trails, camel backs, and planes.
Invest in bags that are waterproof, throw proof, and life proof. Invest in gear that you can rely on for years.
2. Pack Light! We cannot stress how important it is to pack light. Pack only what you need and sometimes even less. If you are on a long journey and will be travelling on multiple types of transportation, pack as light as you possibly can. Try to pack within the 25-55 lbs range. Invest in a durable backpack, tough day pack, good sleeping bag liner, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, and durable clothes.
Here are some suggestions of products we love to travel with and can't travel without!
Hammock--> A hammock is a vagabond's best friend. Use it for sleeping, resting, shading, sheltering, and more. Hammocks can be hung in a number of locations and can often provide a much comfier place rest than most places you find yourself sleeping on the road. Check out Madera Hammocks. Every hammock bought provides funding to plant two trees in Cameroon, Senegal, Uganda, Tanzania, and Cambodia.
Kindle or other Reading device --> We are book lovers and know how hard it is to say goodbye to that blissful feeling of holding a book in hand however, it is time to let go. Invest in a kindle, use your phone, or some other reading device. Books are wonderful however, they take up a great deal of space and weight.
Water Bottle --> A reusable water bottle with some kind of filtration device is hands down the best way to travel. Not only are you sourcing local water reserves, you are also cutting down on plastic and water waste. One plastic water bottle takes roughly 450 years to degrade and twice the amount of the water in the bottle to make it. Check out the Sawyer Mini Filter and be sure to pack a Nalgene. Durable, lightweight, and necessary for every journey.
Spork --> Don’t use plastic silverware it is a thing of the past. Invest in a titanium spork. Durable, eco-friendly, and reusable. Find one here at REI an eco-friendly company that now offers awesome deals in their used gear department.
Cloth bags --> A great way to save money, meet locals, and try local cuisine is going to markets. Instead of wasting plastic pack a reusable cloth bag. Comes in handy more than you would think. In my travels cloth bags have been everything from groceries to puke sack while on a bus. They are invaluable and very lightweight.
Bandana --> Bandanas come in handy in a million different ways. Traveling with a really solid bandana can make a world of a difference in many situations including sand storms, cold spells, napkins, head bands, wash cloth, trail marker, lens cleaner, etc. A great company to buy a soft eco-friendly bandana from is Sugar Sky a company based out of Colorado. SugarSky is about to release some new designs that are made entirely from recycled materials. You can even design your own style! Check them out.
Green Washing --> While you are on the road and traveling with lightweight the question of laundry always becomes an issue. One of the greatest inventions to solve this predicament is the Scrubba Wash Bag. Easy to use wash bag that keeps your clothes clean using minimal water and taking up minimal space and weight in your pack. If you are doing your laundry outdoors be sure to use chemical free soaps like Sea to Summit Laundry Wash. Don’t harm the land you are visiting.
**If you want to save money on gear and already have stuff sack that is waterproof, use that as a makeshift washbag.
Tent --> The Fly Creek HV UL2 from Big Agnes, Colorado based company working to create eco friendly lightweight gear. The Fly Creek 2 Platinum is a travelers best friend packing out at only 2lbs 5oz.
Back Packs --> Osprey Packs are made with the environment in mind. Based in Colorado, Osprey strives to create durable long lasting products. We suggest the Ariel AG 65 or 75 for backpacking, the Farpoint 80 for travel, and the, Mira Ag 26 for a day pack.
Manduka Yoga Mats --> For those who cannot travel without their yoga mat, check out Manduka Mats. Manduka makes their mats with the environment in mind, using the least harmful materials to leave the smallest environmental footprint that they can.
**Be sure to check out all their products and read how and what kind of recycled materials were used to create your product.
Photos by @tarah_waters (follow her on Instagram)