1 - Bring your own refillable skin and hair care products. Not only do these have less impact, they also ensure you have your favourite products with you wherever you go. I always go for carry on size containers - easier to carry, plus lost bags suck!
2 - Research the companies you're planning on travelling with. Get to know their policies, see what they do to minimise environmental impact and how they work with local communities to support the local economy. For instance Contiki's website has a whole section dedicated to their sustainable initiatives and ideas on how to travel responsibly, called Contiki Cares ( www.contiki.com/contikicares)
3 - Think about transportation and try to reduce your impact. If you're flying, try to book direct flights wherever possible. If you're on the ground, try out carpooling, take public transport or better yet, travel by coach. One full coach of people means 16 fewer cars on the road; in other words, a much happier environment.
4 - Bring your own refillable water bottle and/or insulated coffee/tea mug. I personally love the range from Klean Kanteen - the perfect alternative to any plastic water batter or coffee cup.
5 - Turn off the tap. Such a simple suggestion that I come back to time and time again because it's just so important. Leaving the tap running for just 1 minute whilst you brush your teeth means 6 litres of fresh, clean drinking water is just going straight down the drain.
6 - Try to tread lightly, literally. Sticking to designated trails and leaving nature and structures untouched is imperative to preserving the natural beauty of any destination, and that's not restricted to above ground. Exploring underwater worlds is not only part of my profession but it's one of my passions, and so I'd implore any young traveller to admire the beauty of our ocean life, but respect it too. Coral belongs on the reef, not in someone's bathroom.
7 - Mobile phones running out of juice are a problem any frequent traveller knows only too well. I always pack a lightweight solar charger for my travels - Goal Zero have an incredible plethora of items that have saved my battery life on many occasions.
8 - Shop locally. You wouldn't believe the number of incredible objects I've picked up from my travels over the years, each with its own unique story to tell. Keep traditions alive when you travel by buying from local artisans who use traditional methods for their craft. You'll be rewarded with some absolute one of a kind pieces plus you'll be contributing to the local economy, so win win.
9 - Read up on the places you'll be visiting. Knowing about a county's religion, culture, history, and any local rules you might need to be aware of is super important to get the most from your travel experience. And hey, if you can brush up on a few key phrases too that wouldn't hurt!
10 - Have fun! Exploring new places and getting to know new cultures is what travel is all about, so just enjoy it. Happier people make for a healthier planet too.