I think it’s fair to say we could all do with being a little bit more environmentally friendly. One of the best ways to get started is by considering how you can improve on those day-to-day things. Even small changes to your routine could make a difference. And what could be described as more routine than your commute? Altering the way you travel is a great way to start treating the planet with a little more respect. Here are our top tips on how to make that commute a bit more friendly to the earth…
1. Use public transport more
Now, as we’re Trainline, we love trains. But we swear we are not being biased when we say that train travel is the way forward when it comes to environmentally friendly travel. Our Carbon Calculator estimates that travelling by rail could cut your carbon footprint in more than half compared to travelling by car. For example, if you commute from Brighton to London, you’ll use just 10 kgs of CO2 compared to 40 kgs when travelling by car.
Opting for the train instead of cars and buses, or flights when travelling for business, is a great way to cut down that carbon footprint. And on the note of business travel, arriving by train will (usually) put you in the heart of the city centre – rather than at an out-of-town airport – hence you’ll also be able to cut down your inner-city commute. Grab a bike or hop on a public bus or tube rather than a taxi and you’re good to go.
2. Switch to mobile tickets
If your route is available on mobile tickets on the Trainline app (over 45% of routes on Trainline are!) then you can cut down on paper waste during your trip too. You’ll need a bit of battery power of course, but chances are, you were going to need that anyway.
3. Stop using takeaway coffee cups
Another way to cut out the mindless use of paper and plastic is to invest in a to-go coffee cup. Of the 2.5 billion coffee cups used per year in the UK, it is estimated that only one in four are recycled. It’s fair to say that most of us enjoy a coffee-to-go on route to the office at least a couple of times a week, and switching to a flask or travel mug is a good way to stop contributing to the waste. Several large chains now also offer discounts to those who opt for their own travel cup. So it’s a win-win. Plus, no one has to know you opted for that chain café, rather than the hipster barista place you tell them that you go to…
4. Mind your waste
Coffee aside, breakfast and snacks are another way that you can kerb your waste. Bringing food from home in reusable Tupperware is the best way to go. But if you are in need of a Pret baguette, then do your best to recycle the waste. This may seem tricky, but many train companies are beginning to go green. Virgin trains for example, have incorporated recycling bins onto their trains. And if you are unsure whether your train has recycling, wait until you arrive at the office and recycle it there.
5. Use your commute to run errands
We all do it. Popping back out in the car to nip to the supermarket or the gym (I mean c’mon, really?). Fitting those day-to-day errands and tasks into your morning or evening commute is a great way to cut your carbon footprint down. All you have got to do is set your alarm a little earlier or press record on that show you normally rush home to watch.