Green on the go

Simple travel tips for an eco-friendly trip

Whether you’re gearing up for a Fourth of July weekend getaway or an extended summer vacation, some simple steps can be taken to leave a smaller environmental footprint behind. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency offers these tips:

Plan Ahead: Choose a hotel near public transportation or places you intend to visit. Look for places that have environmentally friendly certifications or memberships in green-industry associations, such as Green Seal or Green Leaf. Though standards vary between organizations, hotels must use energy-saving appliances, have recycling programs, reuse towels, and meet other standards to be certified “green.” If flying, book e-tickets to reduce paper waste.

Before you leave: Unplug any unnecessary appliances like TVs, computers and microwaves, which use energy even in off mode. Set thermostat and water heater settings to low.

While you’re there: Follow the same rules you do at home as far as turning off lights and appliances not in use. Avoid room service and carry out, which increase waste. Walk or use public transportation. Only take maps, brochures and hotel sundries (shampoo, soap, etc.) that you intend to use.