Go Green when You Travel

Eco friendly travel tips

We have to travel - even if it's just a ten-mile trip to and from work every weekday. People can't help but move around, and a good bit of that is by some sort of fuel-burning transportation. Cars, trains, planes and buses all require fuel. Going green when you travel can save you money and make your community a more pleasant, less polluted place to live.

  • Look for the most efficient vehicle you can afford. Sometimes this is a hybrid. Other times, a diesel that runs on an alternative fuel source - like Flex Fuel or vegetable oil - is the most-efficient vehicle for your needs. Do the research, ask the questions, and make a good choice. You'll be glad that you invested time in your decision when you start putting fuel into your new ride.
  • Conserve fuel when you drive. If you tend to drive five miles over the speed limit, slow down to the legal limit. You'll save some fuel - and perhaps avoid a couple of tickets if you happen to drive past a very by-the-book type of police officer.
  • Plan your trips. Try not to cover the same ground more times than necessary. This saves fuel and time. You can also run as many errands as possible in one outing, instead of spreading them out throughout the week.
  • Perform routine maintenance. Your car gets better fuel economy when the front end is properly aligned; the tires are inflated to the proper specifications; your engine is tuned up and your air filter is clean.
  • Get some exercise. If you get a craving for a hot dog from the convenience store two blocks away, why not walk? You can also ride a bike if that's what you prefer. You'll take a bit more time getting to the store and back, but you'll get your heart rate up a bit and save some fuel.
  • Share rides or use public transportation. You don't even have to drive all the way to work. If, for example, you live ten miles away and there is a public-transportation depot or stop two miles from your house, you can park the car there and ride the rest of the way in.
  • Find an efficient way to take long trips, like vacations. The train is usually more energy-efficient than the commercial airliner, for example. Sure, your travel time is a lot longer, but think of all the great things that you'll see - and do with your family - while you're getting there and back.

Traveling green is about more than just saving money. You're also conserving resources and reducing your carbon footprint, making the world around you - both now and in the future - a slightly-better place to be.

author: Sarah Borroum

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