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Eco-friendly travel: what is best for you and the planet?

Going away on holiday can be stressful. Between the rush to pack your bags, organise your home for while you are away, and making sure you have all the foreign money and insurance you need, it can be easy to forget about the ecological impact your journey may have.

Every journey we make has a carbon footprint, which is the total amount of greenhouse gases emitted in the process of making that journey. Walking has the lowest carbon footprint of any journey, but even Googling something has a carbon footprint. Every search emits about 7 grams of carbon dioxide, which means two searches are equal to boiling a kettle.

Keeping track of your carbon emissions can be a complicated issue, so we have prepared a guide to helping your next holiday have a lighter impact on the planet. You may be surprised by which forms of transport are greenest!

Walking and cycling have the lowest impact on the environment of all modes of transport, but assuming you want to holiday abroad, we have compiled a list of ways to holiday, starting with the one which is best for the environment.

Travel by ferry or cruise ship

Travelling by sea instead of flying is not only greener; it is also a lot more enjoyable than shooting through the air at 30,000 feet in a metal box. You can stroll the spacious deck, relax in a restaurant with delicious fresh food and take in the fresh sea air all around you. Your luggage will be on the ship with you too, so you are much less likely to lose it. For all the best cruise offers, Cruise 1st partner with the major cruise lines, so can save you more money than booking directly. You can travel by cruise ship to the other side of the world, or just to Europe.

Cruise 1st

Green rating:

Waste: 1.2 tonnes of carbon

High speed train travel

If you want to travel to Europe then catching a Eurotunnel train is an efficient way. While not as green as travelling by ferry, it is quick and still much more eco-friendly than flying. If you haven’t travelled this way before then you may be pleasantly surprised by just how quickly you will find yourself speeding through the beautiful French countryside. It takes around two and a half hours to get from London to Paris on the train, about half an hour of which is under the sea. Checking in is quick and easy, and the journ¬ey is similar to an intercity train ride.

Green rating:

Waste: 2 tonnes of carbon

Long haul flight

Taking a long haul flight, such as a journey to the United States or New Zealand, creates a high level of carbon emissions. While a long haul flight will generally be the quickest way to reach your destination, it is not necessarily the best. One way to make a flight less damaging to the environment however is to use carbon offsetting. This involves a relatively small one-off payment for trees to be planted and green energies to be developed, thus removing some of the harmful carbon emissions from the environment.

Green rating:

Waste: 7 tonnes of carbon

Short haul flight

Short flights are one of the most damaging forms of transport for the environment in use today. While a longer flight may be unavoidable in certain instances, a shorter flight will generally have several much greener alternative options. Short haul flights are not always the quickest way to reach your destination either. By the time you have reached the airport, checked in, made it through security and had an over priced panini in departures, you could be halfway through France, tucking into a fresh baguette and sipping hot coffee as you watch the fields flash by.

Green rating:

Waste: 3 tonnes of carbon produced

So green travel does not have to break the bank and you do not have to accept a poor substitute for anything, as taking a little more time on your journey can really improve your enjoyment. After all, the best things in life happen slowly. Friendship, food and sex are not as good when they are over quickly. Why should your holiday travel be any different?

All offers (including descriptions, prices etc) contained within this advertising feature are the sole responsibility of the individual advertisers and CMG cannot accept any liability whatsoever for the accuracy or validity of the content. Champion Media Group is not responsible for the content of any external websites outside of their control.

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