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Pack it In

Our tips for travellers who want to be polite to the planet while taking pleasure in it.
Click here to go back to enRoute's Road Guide to Eco Etiquette.

On carbon closure

Canadian architect Peter Busby, of U.S.-based green firm Perkins + Will, hasn’t checked a bag in 15 years, and never packs more than four changes of clothes. Commuting between Vancouver and San Francisco, plus travelling to work sites, the Altitude Super Elite® 100K member clocks up to 175,000 miles annually on Air Canada. “The firm tracks how many miles every person in our office flies or drives per year. Last year, we logged more than 11 million miles, which we offset by purchasing carbon credits,” he notes.  

Lose some weight

If one passenger on a full-capacity Boeing 777-300 between Montreal and Paris managed to drop one kilogram from their baggage, the savings would be about .19 kilograms in fuel. If all 349 passengers did the same thing, the savings would be almost 68 kilograms of fuel or 214 kilograms of carbon emissions, roughly the equivalent of driving between Toronto and Montreal four times in the Toyota Auris Hybrid.

Work it out

Exercise gear is a space eater. So plan to swim (and fly that Speedo flag!) or look for hotels that will equip you. The Westin’s Gear Lending program loans out New Balance running shoes and workout clothes in guests’ requested sizes. (You can keep the socks.) Through the Fairmont Fit program, President’s Club members can borrow outfits, yoga mats and MP3 players. Cue the Zumba.

Keep calm and carry on

Pack rats take note: Before you even fill it, the dead weight of your luggage can add up. Barely tipping the scales at 1.9 kilograms, Rimowa’s Salsa Air Cabin Multiwheel ($475) shaves off grams with a polycarbonate shell rather than the company’s signature aluminum. The parachute-strength fabric divider, lock, waterproof zipper and 360-degree swivel wheels are all featherweight.

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