Bring Your Own Sustainable Habits to Your Overseas Family Holidays – Part 2

If we could predict how our ingrained daily sustainable habits would work in another country, travelling would be a breeze. For our latest family holiday to Japan, I learned a stack of good stuff to help you plan a more sustainable holiday by reducing unnecessary waste and help to maintain some of the good sustainable habits you’ve established at home. 

This is a three part series where I share how you can bring your own sustainable habits to your overseas family holiday. Each part of the series focusses on the most common areas of home living:-

This is your essential list of useful, reusable and low tox products to take with you when travelling overseas as a family.

Some links in this article are my genuine partnership recommendations. I may receive a commission for your successful purchases. 

Washing, Bathing and Hygiene

In all of our accommodations, the washing, bathing and some general hygiene products were freely supplied. Taking your own cleaning products and toiletries means you know what’s in your products that are kind on your skin, contain no nasty chemicals, and are minimally packaged.

Our best personal hygiene product recommendations are:

  • Shampoo decanted into a smaller container. This minimises the weight of your luggage and the space it takes up. 
  • Lip balm This is particularly handy for all types of weather conditions. I used both the Weleda Skin Food lip balm and my DIY lip balm by combining wool fat with jojoba oil that’s kept in a small screw-top container.
  • Towels Even though towels were provided in all accommodation, our large muslin cloth for incidental use was super handy. We used ours after taking a hot public footbath (onsen) in the cold winter. These cloths are the ultimate, more environmentally friendly quick-dry option.
  • Handkerchief They seem very icky to some, but these are the best for travelling – blow your nose, wash and dry. Or using a clean handkerchief for those times when accidents happen, like cutting your lip and tongue by falling up the escalator!

All of these sustainable habits are better for you and certainly reduce your environmental footprint by saving on unnecessary waste.


These few laundry items give you the flexibility to wash and dry small amounts of clothing when you ‘re on the go. There is always somewhere in your room to air dry them.

My essentials are:-

  • Elastic twisty clothesline with hooks at each end – ideal for stringing up to hang your smalls and lighter items
  • Two pegs per person – to use with coathangers with horizontal bars, to peg curtains together, close open packets
  • A couple of s-hooks – for hanging things over hinged doors
  • A small bottle of laundry powder. For times when you need to wash more than one items using the bar of soap.

How to Bring Your Own

Taking your everyday sustainable habits with you when travelling will help you feel more empowered in a country that (from a tourist perspective) does it differently to you. Travelling is about stepping out of your comfort zone but also knowing you can still follow the same eco-friendly principles you’ve already established as much as possible.

This is such a comprehensive list of useful suggestions and tips  for bringing your realistic, sustainable habits on holidays in regards to washing, bathing & hygiene and laundering. Above all, enjoy experiencing your travels and celebrate your little sustainability wins along the way!

For further sustainable holiday tips, click through to Part 1 – Shopping, Cooking and Eating and Part 3 – Clothing and Water use, in the series.

Some links in this article are my genuine partnership recommendations. I may receive a commission for your successful purchases. 

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