The Best Way to Travel…

A look at how to be eco friendly while travelling the world

As there are more and more people travelling around the world, there are arguments about whether the environment can afford so many people globetrotting. Travelling is actually causing damage to the environment, especially travelling by plane. Therefore, we should start to think about whether there are any alternative ways of travelling that could reduce the impact on the environment.

Plane versus car versus train versus cruise…

For most people, the most popular and common way of travelling is by plane. It is the fastest way to travel from place to place. If you have a busy schedule, a plane would be the best choice of transport as it can help save time compared to other ways of travelling. However, planes are the major contributor to impact on the environment as they produce a high carbon footprint which gives rise to the greenhouse effect. In addition to this, travelling by plane means you might miss out on some beautiful scenes of the environment. Also, compared to some of the other ways of travelling, the price of travelling by plane is very high, and at the same time you won’t have a flexible journey because it is common to have flights delay that affects onward journeys.

“This is less expensive than travelling by plane and interrailing”

In recent years, more people have chosen to drive across countries or inside a country. This is because you can have a flexible journey based on your own schedule and plan your journey easily – you can decide when you are going to start the journey. During the journey, you can adjust the route and destinations at any time according to your own wish. You can also see more scenery along the journey that you won’t be able to see by plane or train as you can take a break from the journey if you want to. More importantly, this is less expensive than travelling by plane and interrailing, although travelling by car takes a longer time to get there than by plane. Another point to consider is that driving requires high intensive concentration for  the whole journey which will affect the driving quality as you will get exhausted easily. Despite having a smaller impact on the environment compared to plane travel, travelling by car still produces high carbon emissions and is not a mass transportation.

“It is more comfortable to travel around by train”

If you are travelling around European countries, a common way is interrailing. Compare to driving, it is more comfortable to travel around by train. You can have a flexible plan for travelling to different countries in one journey as the train network has a variety of services, and various choices for you to fulfil your schedule. Also, you can experience the change of culture and scenarios outside the train during the whole journey. More importantly, it is environmentally friendly since it would not produce a lot of carbon emission as it is a form of mass transportation. However, there are some consequences when travelling by train takes more time to travel to different countries than by plane and sometimes the train ticket can be more expensive than the flight ticket. Also, if the weather is extremely bad, the train system may be badly hit and this could affect your journey afterwards.

“You don’t have a lot of time to experience the local culture of a place”

If you wish to travel intercontinental, aside from travelling by plane, you can also choose to travel by cruise. A cruise is a tour which stops by different countries in one journey, which means you don’t need to do a lot of planning for the journey. On board the cruise ship, there are many entertainment facilities so that you would not get bored – even though it takes a longer time to travel compared to the plane. Also, it could reduce the impact on the environment. The negative sides of travelling by cruise include the price, which is very expensive compared to all other transports. Also, each place only stays for a very short time and the schedule is packed, therefore, you don’t have a lot of time to experience the local culture of a place.

Travelling is the best way to experience different cultures and deepen the horizon. At the same time, we should think about which way of travelling is the best not only benefit yourself but also to the environment.

Charlotte Leung

Image courtesy of kansasphoto via Flickr.

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