As travelers, we love to explore our beautiful planet. Associated with this is the responsibility to do our best to reduce the negative effects of our actions. Travelers are becoming more and more environmentally conscious about the products they use – on the path of being an environmentally conscious traveler.
The good news is that there are so many products out there that are designed with the green traveler in mind. More and more companies are designing wonderful eco-friendly travel items and accessories to help eco-conscious travelers reduce their footprint when traveling the world.
Whether it’s a Christmas present, birthday present, wedding present or parting present – we will help you find it perfect eco-friendly gift for the eco-conscious traveler in your life!
Here are the Travel Dude team’s favorite eco-friendly gift ideas for the eco-conscious traveler!
Eco-friendly gifts for all travelers
From recycled gifts to sustainable and ethical gifts, below is a list of great one-of-a-kind travel gifts for all the eco-conscious traveler. Including travel gifts for men and travel gifts for women.
Buying travel size toiletries is so unnecessary! Some alternative toiletries to buy include:
Scrubba wash bag
Backpackers or travelers who want to pack light often wash their clothes while traveling. The Scrubba Wash Bag is a useful item for laundry on the go, as you can wash your clothes practically anywhere you can find water. You save excessive water consumption in traditional washing and expensive laundry costs in hotels.
Collapsible coffee cup and water bottle
Coffee lovers will love getting a collapsible coffee mug. Since it’s collapsible, it doesn’t take up much space when not in use – great for on the go! The same goes for a collapsible water bottle.
We love the collapsible Stojo coffee mugs and the collapsible / foldable CHICMODA water bottle. For environmentally conscious travelers who frequently travel to areas with unsafe drinking water, bottles with a purification system (not just a filtration system) may be a better gift option. Two popular options are Grayl and LifeStraw.
While more restaurants and bars are throwing away plastic straws thanks to the global #NoMoreStraws movement, it’s still a good idea to have your own reusable straws with you when you travel. They’re great for whipping while sipping your pina coladas on the beach, or for families traveling with kids.
Check out this 12 pack of bamboo straws (handmade in Bali and supplied with a cleaning and pouch bag) or these handy collapsible reusable straws (they also come with a cleaning brush).
Multipurpose travel towel
Quick-drying towels are a lifesaver when traveling. A quick-drying, antimicrobial towel made from eco-friendly fibers like the Trespass bamboo towel is an all-in-one option. Not only is this convenient when traveling as it folds up very small, but it also means less washing which is better for the planet.
Reusable food containers and cutlery
In countries with a strong street food culture, it is almost impossible not to have single use bags and containers. This is of course the case if you don’t have your own reusable containers that you’d rather use. Reuseit’s collapsible silicone food containers are great. We also love Stasher’s reusable silicone grocery bags – these are great for packing snacks for a hike or long bus ride.
Snack containers often come with plastic cutlery as well – both of which are pretty useless and usually not properly recycled. Bring your travel companions a set of reusable cutlery to take with you on your travels. The Light My Fire Spork is a great option, along with this bamboo cutlery set that rolls up into a neat pouch (it even includes a pair of chopsticks!)!
Solar Battery Charger
Finding a way to keep your gear charged can be a problem for travelers on the road – especially during long bus / train journeys or hiking off the grid. The Anker PowerPort Solar uses solar energy to charge your equipment. Other options for solar chargers are Instapark or Goal Zero.
This makes a great eco gift for active travelers who spend a lot of time outdoors. A solar charger is really a gift that keeps giving!
Whether for stays, day trips while traveling, backpacking or as hand luggage – for many travelers it is important to find a well-made and versatile backpack. Cotopaxi is one of the best companies on the market that makes well-made backpacks and gives back with its poverty reduction project.
Ethnotek is another great company focused on keeping culture alive by making high quality laptops and travel bags with handcrafted textiles from ethical sources. By purchasing one of her bags, she will get a job in the art of hand printing, weaving and embroidery with her partner villages in Ghana, Guatemala, India, Indonesia and Vietnam.
Read our post on the functional and stylish daypacks for more inspiration.
If there’s one thing that all travelers need, it’s good headphones. Long flights, bus rides, and train rides get much better with your own jams playing in your ears. The House of Marley headphones are made from recycled plastics, metals and bamboo – they are the perfect sustainable gift.
Eco-friendly travel gifts for women
Looking for the best travel gifts for her? Make sure they are environmentally friendly too!
With this reusable menstrual cup, ladies can have an environmentally friendly time. They also make your periods so much easier when traveling! Ladies – get one of these for yourself as well as for your female travel companions! It may take you a while to get used to it, but once you get the hang of it, you won’t be looking back. Did you know that using one menstrual cup for one year can save you wasting over 200 single-use products ?!
There are many different menstrual cups on the market – check out the options here. Or save time and check out the most popular ones, including RubyCup, Lunette or DivaCup. For every RubyCup sold, they donate a menstrual cup to someone who does not have access to safe products.
Reusable makeup wipes
Disposable makeup wipes are an environmental nightmare! They’re not biodegradable and also filled with nasty chemicals. These reusable bamboo makeup removers are a great alternative – they also come with non-latex makeup sponges.
And if your traveling beast can’t do without wipes, these face and body wipes make a great ethical gift. The Ode to Clean wipes are free from fragrances, allergens and toxins. They are completely vegetable, biodegradable, and are made from wind power.
Causes and experiences
Giving does not always have to be a physical product. Another great gift idea for the eco-conscious traveler is giving experiences or donating for a specific purpose. Donate to an environmental cause your friend cares about – it can be a conservation project, animal welfare, or environmental education and research.
Alternatively, book an environmentally conscious trip or experience wherever your next trip will be. G Adventures has a strong focus on responsible travel with lots of great eco-conscious trips around the world. Read more about their initiatives here.
Intrepid Travel is another tour operator with a highly responsible travel policy – they offer many trips around the world. Gift card options are available for both G Adventures and Intrepid Travel.
We also love the idea behind the Tinggly gift box! The recipient can choose from a huge list of the world’s most impressive travel experiences. From skydiving in Singapore to riding adventures in Puerto Rico!
Another great idea is to give away gift cards for online services that will allow your green travel buddy to enjoy their travels more. Give an Amazon Gift Card, Kindle Gift Card, Audible Subscription, or Spotify Gift Card.