When you’re travelling with the family, there’s a lot to think about. From making sure you’ve packed everything to sorting out travel arrangements, you’ve got to have your wits about you when you’re planning a trip with the kids. As a result, checking the environmental impact of your holiday may not be top of the to-do list - but if you’re serious about doing your bit for the planet, it’s time to take action!
Reducing your carbon footprint slows climate change, preserves the Earth’s resources, and makes the world safer for people and animals. The benefits are obvious - the question is, how do you go about planning a summer holiday that’s fun, invigorating, and carbon neutral?
What’s The Average Family Holiday Carbon Footprint?
The first step is to calculate how much carbon you expect to produce on your trip - so let’s take a look at the carbon dioxide emissions (CO2e) for a couple of popular destinations. Return flights to Italy from the UK will produce approximately 2 tons of CO2e per family of four - while equivalent flights to Disneyworld in Florida are liable to produce more than 9 tons of CO2e. And that’s before you consider car hire, airport transfers, electricity and gas use, and buying food and drink.
What’s The Alternative?
Everyone deserves a break from their day-to-day lives - but you don’t have to take a long-haul flight to get away from it all. Particularly since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, staycations and UK-based holidays have become increasingly popular. Not only are they lighter on the wallet, but they have less of an environmental impact, too.
There are tons of options for a staycation. You can rent a hotel room, an Airbnb, a coastal cottage - or even a houseboat. But for the truly intrepid explorers - the travellers with adventurous spirits, and even more adventurous kids - nothing beats hitting the open road in a camper van.
Holidaying in a camper van is fun, practical - and, compared with flying, has a minimal impact on the environment. In our very own Grape camper van, you can travel from Essex to the Lake District and back - a journey of approximately 560 miles - and produce less than 0.25 metric tons of carbon dioxide. That’s less than an eighth of the CO2e produced on flights to Italy - and less than 3% of the emissions produced by flying to Florida.
How To Offset Your Carbon Dioxide Emissions
Reducing your carbon footprint is one thing - but by offsetting your carbon emissions, you can ensure you truly leave no trace when you travel. There are a number of ways you can offset your carbon footprint - it’s just about having commitment to the cause.
Plant Trees In Your Local Area
Trees absorb carbon dioxide - which is one of the reasons why deforestation has such a massive impact on climate change. By planting trees in your area, you can begin to offset the carbon produced on your trip - and it’s a fun activity to get the kids involved with, too. However, to offset 0.34 tons of CO2e, you’ll need to reforest approximately 680 square metres of land - which isn’t the most practical solution.
Pay To Offset Your Carbon Footprint
Many travellers choose to pay organisations to offset their carbon footprint on their behalf. This can include reforestation agencies, fossil fuel reduction activities, and projects in developing countries that benefit people as well as the environment. Use an online calculator to calculate your carbon footprint, and choose the projects that speak to you and your family.
Choose Carbon Neutral Activities
Don’t add to your carbon output while you’re away - choose carbon neutral activities like rowing, walking, cycling and hiking to ensure your carbon footprint stays as low as possible. This means you won’t need to offset as much CO2e - and also means you can explore the beautiful natural sites across the UK without causing harm to habitats or plants.
Do What You Can
It’s easy to overcomplicate matters when it comes to calculating your carbon footprint - but doing something is always better than doing nothing. Don’t be put off by the maths involved - make your best guess and do what you can to offset and reduce your carbon footprint.
Want To Know More About SKiN&BLiSS Essex Camper Van Holidays?
Our camper vans are always ready for an adventure! You can hire either Grape or Rhubarb for a minimum of 2 nights - just book online, then collect your van from our base in Essex.
Our Essex camper vans aren’t just for travelling - they’re designed to be lived in. With space for 4 bunkers, hunker down in our cosy yet spacious campers and hit the road. Whether you’re planning a long weekend at the beach, or a month-long European escapade, our camper vans will be your sturdy companions throughout. You can even bring your furry friends along for the ride!
You’ll have everything you need for a comfortable stay that’s filled with adventure - from a bike rack to a fridge to an inflatable awning, we offer loads of fun, useful features to make your staycation even more exciting than a trip to Disneyworld. Find out how it works here!