Summer is a great time to pack up the family and go on a road trip. At home, we may have established routines to minimize our carbon footprint, but it doesn’t need to stop there. Taking a green road trip is a great way to be environmentally conscious and save yourself money. The next time you take a road trip, consider these small gestures that make a real difference:

Unplug your appliances: Take a few minutes before you leave and unplug any appliances that may unnecessarily use up electricity. Items like small appliances, electronics that are on sleep mode, chargers and modems can be unplugged to save energy.

Minimize packaging: This small change has a big impact and it’s easy to do! Pack waste-free meals by using reusable containers, cloth napkins, stainless steel utensils and reusable drink containers. Not only are you generating less trash, you are reducing food waste as well!

Shop local: Reduce your carbon footprint, support local communities and find hidden gems by hitting up the local farmer’s markets. By eating seasonally and locally, you are reducing “food miles” and your impact on food.

Open your windows: A lot of us turn on the A/C before even giving fresh air a chance. Use air conditioning as little as possible by parking in the shade and leaving the windows cracked open when parked.

Walk when you can! A road trip isn’t all about driving. Whenever possible, get out, stretch your legs and enjoy the space you are in!

Road trips will always be a great past time, but getting in the car doesn’t mean you can’t be environmentally friendly. A few small changes before you leave will help to make a big difference while you focus on making lasting memories!