The Queenstown Lakes District aims to have a carbon-zero visitor economy by 2030. You can support this by being a more conscious traveller. Every little thing counts (and we’re working on the big things, too). Here are five ways you can help:
Travel light: This is one of the best ways to reduce your carbon footprint when you fly. The heavier your luggage, the more fuel that is used getting you to your destination. You'll be doing yourself a favour, too. If you can limit yourself to a carry-on bag, you'll be able to check in more quickly, avoid waiting for bags when you land, clear Customs faster, have less weight to lug around, and be able to use public transport more easily. So, how do you do that?
Be ruthless when packing: The first things to remove are those "just-in-case" items. Do you really need that sequinned dress or a selection of shoes? Pack light, versatile clothes that you can layer up, if necessary, and wash along the way. Bonus points if they're made out of natural materials. Toiletries are heavy, so buy them when you get to your destination (or, at least, transfer products into small refillable bottles). Leave the laptop at home and use your phone or a tablet instead. The same applies to heavy paper books. Now might be the time to try an audio book.
Carry a reusable cup or bottle: It is important to keep well hydrated when travelling and this will allow you to avoid takeaway cups and plastic bottles. It could also save you money, enabling you to use public water fountains. The water at Queenstown Airport is UV-treated and safe to drink, but don't fill your bottle until you have cleared security screening.
Use public transport: It's cheap, environmentally friendly, and a great way to experience living like a local. If you want to catch public buses around Queenstown, get a Bee Card from Paper Plus.
Embrace the slow travel movement: Take time to immerse yourself in a place and build connections with people, rather than rushing around ticking off a shopping list of destinations. If you've arrived in Queenstown, two of the best ways to explore this region are on foot or on a bike. Here's some advice for doing that safely.