When traveling, be aware of your impact on both the physical and social environment. Whenever possible, try to minimize negative environmental impacts and make positive contributions by choosing eco-friendly options, conserving plants, wildlife and other resources, and respecting local cultures and communities.
Travelers have opportunities to preserve and protect the environment of the place they are visiting. Look for green lodging options and earth-friendly transportation such as biking, walking and taking public transit.
The Government has made environmental sustainability a priority. FedRooms is working with its hotels to promote properties that have sustainable practices in place - look for the FedRooms “green” icon when searching for hotels.
Some tips to think about before traveling include:
- Choose hotels that are locally owned or staffed by local employees.
- Choose hotels that have recycling programs and options for reusing towels and sheets instead of having them changed each day.
- Research if the hotel offers energy-efficient lighting, low-flow toilets and showers, or if they take advantage of alternative energy sources.
- Select a hotel close to public transportation and or near the places you are going to visit.
- When flying, book electronic tickets.
- Minimize air travel and choose to stay longer in a destination instead of making many short trips.
- For shorter trips, take the train, take the bus, or drive.
- When renting a car, choose a small hybrid car.
- Share the ride with fellow employees. Ride sharing can include either cabs or shuttle services between airports, hotels, and conferences or meetings.
- Pack lightly. Reducing the weight of luggage can significantly cut green house gas emissions and reduce the weight of your individual carbon footprint.
- Before leaving home, unplug any unnecessary appliances and set the thermostat and water heater at low settings.
During your trip, try to:
- Minimize water usage when showering or brushing your teeth.
- Turn off air conditioning and other electrical appliances when not in use.
- Use your own drinking cups and toiletries.
- Tell the hotel how important eco-friendly options are to you.
- Walk: Agencies should raise the awareness of the environmental and health benefits of walking or bicycling between lodging and meetings at the temporary duty site when practical.
- Use public transportation: You as a traveler should be familiar with subway/trains and bus routes that are available between meetings, lodging, and other locations at which business is to be conducted.
- Grab only the maps and brochures that you will actually use.
- Eat local: Visit a farmer’s market, shop at a locally owned grocery store and choose locally owned restaurants that buy local.
- Whenever possible, utilize options that do not require batteries. Buy rechargeable batteries for your essential travel items (cameras, razors, and flash lights).
- Check out electronically. Most hotels allow travelers to view and approve their bill electronically rather than relying on paper documents.
After your trip, eliminate the use of paper by signing up for online or paperless statements and payments.