What do you do when you have a little time on your hands? Travel the world! That’s what industry pro Jess Flint is doing & she’s inviting you to join her this week as she learns how to ditch plastic bottles.
“Water is the driving force of all nature” Leonardo da Vinci famously claimed. As many an intrepid traveller knows, it can also be the driving force behind a holiday spent in the bathroom if you’re not careful to avoid drinking tap water.
Bottled water is often the easiest alternative for travellers, but this ‘easy option’ is having a detrimental effect on the environment and other solutions must be explored.
According to Forbes, globally we are now buying a million bottles each minute, of which 91 percent are not being recycled. This creates a range problems, including estimates that by 2050 the ocean will contain more plastic by weight then fish, much of which finds its way into the seafood that we eat.
As travel industry professionals we often visit and encourage others to visit countries where water is unsafe to drink, this means we have a responsibility to find ways to reduce our environmental impact and encourage our clients to do the same. Luckily these days there are many alternatives available.
On a recent 17 day hiking trip to Everest Base Camp, I put some earth-friendly options to the test. Here’s what I found:
TOP PICK: Grayl Purifier + Filter Bottle
Founded in 2012 by two global travellers, the Grayl claims to be the world’s most advanced purifier + filter bottle. Easy to use and weighing only 309 grams, the filter bottle offers full-spectrum protection from pathogens (viruses, bacteria & protozoa), particulates, chemicals and heavy metals.
– Use this filter system for filling the Grayl bottle itself & fill up other bottles
– The filter works in 15 seconds with one press
– Removes bacteria, viruses & other chemicals and heavy metals
– The filter system needs A LOT of pressure to work
– The filter takes up a bit of space,which means the bottle only holds 473 ml
LifeStraw Go 2-Stage Bottle
The story of LifeStraw began in 1994 with a cloth filter designed to remove Guinea worm larvae from water, a development that has helped contribute to the near-eradication of the disease. Continuous development and innovation has seen a range of products launched, including the Lifestraw Go 2-Stage filtration system, which incorporates an activated carbon capsule and reduces chlorine, bad taste, waterborne bacteria, protozoa and micro-plastics.
– No pressing/pumping required, you can drink immediately
– Weighs only 168 grams and holds 650 ml
– Lower price
– The bottle can only be used for drinking and not for pouring
– The filter doesn’t remove viruses, chemicals or heavy metals
SteriPEN Ultra UV Water Purifier
Since 1999, SteriPEN UV water purifiers have used ultraviolet light to destroy bacteria and protozoan cysts. UV light purifies water without harmful chemicals and without changing the taste, odour or colour of the water. Simply activate the lamp and stir in water to destroy microbes that can cause waterborne illnesses.
– Small size fits most containers & can be used in cups, water bottles or canteens
– Very compact and lightweight, weighing only 140 grams
– Can be used in warm water as well as cold
– The UV light does not filter out particulates & debris from water
The UV light requires re-charging after 50L via a USB power source
– Higher price or more basic models available for a lower price
Whichever option best suits your travel style, you can now enjoy off the beaten path adventures without adding to the plastic problem — let’s all raise a glass of filtered water to that!
How do you avoid using bottles on the road?
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