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Green Travel
clip art for sustainabilityTo take the first step toward becoming a green traveler, ask yourself: 
Do I need to travel at all? 
Is it possible to achieve your goals with a teleconference?                                   

Sometimes travel is the best option to meet business needs.  Here are some things to think about to make your trip as environmentally friendly as possible.


Fly Less:

  • Will a train do? Use alternative modes of transportation whenever possible
  • Fly nonstop. The majority of a plane's carbon emissions come from takeoffs and landings, and more fuel is required for a one-stop or two-stop trip.  You will get there faster and reduce both emissions and fuel consumption.  Keep an eye on the price, to make sure the nonstop is a good value versus the multiple stop options.
  • Plan wisely - schedule trips back to back.  You will save time and resources not flying home in-between business trips.
  • Use electronic tickets.  Saves paper.

    Logo for joining the biking community through PennCycle or Indego

Choose Ground Transportation Smartly:

  • Walk.  Try to walk as much as possible instead of taking cabs or renting a car.
  • Take public transportation. In most metropolitan areas, taking the subway or metro is often faster than a taxi navigating through traffic.  (Added benefit - it is usually cheaper!)
  • Share transportation.  If you are traveling with co-workers, schedule your travel at the same time so you can share taxi rides or rental cars.  Or, take the hotel van or airport shuttle service to reduce the number of vehicles on the road.
  • Opt for eco cabs. Most major cities now have hybrid taxis and eco cabs.  Research before you travel to see if this is available at your destination.
  • Choose a green car rental. Renting a hybrid car might be slightly more, but you'll balance it out by saving money on gas, and you'll also reduce the pollutants put into the air.

Carry Green

clip art water bottlePack light. Heavy luggage requires more energy to get where it needs to go.  In addition to saving the environment, packing light can save you time (no waiting at baggage claim), stress (no worry about losing your bags), and money (no overweight luggage fees).
Bring a reusable water bottle. Carry it empty through security, and fill it before getting on the plane.  Keep it with you throughout your travels, refilling it often.

Green Your Hotel Stay

  • Use fewer resources.
    • Adjust the thermostat up two degrees in the summer and down two degrees in the winter.  Turn it off when you are not in the room.
    • Unplug everything you are not using.  Appliances drain energy even when they are not on.
    • Hang your towels, rather than having them replaced each day.
    • Decline housekeeping.  Do you really need clean sheets every day?  Save water, electricity, and the use of cleaning chemicals.
    • Leave any unused toiletries for the next guest.  Think of all the plastic and packaging used to create the tiny bottles of shampoo, conditioner, lotion, and other items.
    • Leave the pen (and other freebies) behind.
  • Check out of your hotel electronically to reduce paper.  Choose to receive your detailed receipt via email.


Take advantage of every opportunity to recycle throughout your trip - at the airport, on your flight, and in the hotel.

To learn more about Penn's Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0, visit: