Most of us have developed pretty good systems for recycling and composting at home, but recycling on the go is a different story. This typically requires advance planning and foresight, which starts with booking hotels, planning meals, and packing reusable food and beverage containers. Follow these tips to keep your waste reduction efforts up while on the move.

Bring Snacks and Water in Reusable Containers

Food and water consumption accounts for a lot of single-use packaging. If you are going on a trip, plan ahead by bringing reusable food containers, travel mugs and water bottles. Bringing some or all of your food helps cut waste and save money because a lot of travel foods come with lots of packaging. You can then refill your mugs and water bottles on your trip. Some restaurants may even let you get food to go with your containers.

Photo: Shutterstock

Bring Bags to Collect Recyclables

It can be difficult to find recycling bins on the go, especially if you aren’t familiar with the area. If you are driving on your trip, bring bags or bins to collect your recyclables and possibly even your food waste scraps for composting.

Stay in a Hotel with Recycling Services

If you are planning to stay in a hotel, do a bit of planning. Before you book your hotel, you can call ahead to find out about their recycling services or look online for hotels with a high green rating. TripAdvisor, for example, has a GreenLeaders Program to help you find sustainable lodging. If the hotel you use doesn’t have a collection system, plan ahead by either collecting your recyclables or finding an alternative recycling collection point.

Recycle with Your Friends and Family

If you are going to visit people, find out if they have a recycling system. If they don’t, you can help them create one. If they live in an area without curbside recycling, find a nearby recycling center online. If they don’t compost food waste, here are some resources to get them started.

Create or Expand Your Workplace Recycling Program

Offices can generate a lot of waste, especially if they don’t have a recycling system. If your office doesn’t already have a recycling program, try to start one and also reduce your waste as much as possible. Try to cut your paper consumption by printing as little as possible, taking paperless notes, packing a lunch, and bringing your beverages in reusable bottles.

Feature photo courtesy of Shutterstock

By Sarah Lozanova

Sarah Lozanova is an environmental journalist and copywriter and has worked as a consultant to help large corporations become more sustainable. She is the author of Humane Home: Easy Steps for Sustainable & Green Living, and her renewable energy experience includes residential and commercial solar energy installations. She teaches green business classes to graduate students at Unity College and holds an MBA in sustainable management from the Presidio Graduate School.