Turning Off the Tap on Plastic Water Bottles

March 21, 2014 Caitlin Hotchkiss

If you’re lucky enough to live in a country that has safe, accessible drinking water for all, it’s likely that you don’t really think about how fortunate you are. But really, having access to water any time you need it is something that a lot of us take for granted—which is why we have World Water Day. In 2010, the United Nation’s Human Rights Council declared access to water was a basic human right. Every year, the UN system seeks to bring awareness to parts of the world that don’t have safe drinking water, in hopes that vital changes will be made.

Here at G Adventures, we’re always concerned with the well-being of this planet we call home. To that end, our not-for-profit organization Planeterra has joined the Travellers Against Plastic (TAP) campaign to help reduce the usage of disposable plastic water bottles while on our trips. Once you take the TAP pledge, you make a vow to use as few plastic water bottles on your trip as possible, leading to less waste and a better environment.

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Adrienne, one of Planeterra’s tireless crew, had this to say about TAP:

“The TAP campaign was spearheaded by Chris Mackay, one of Planeterra’s contacts at Crooked Trails. As a program supported by many of our industry partners, we joined the campaign to support the launch last April—on Earth Day. The stars aligned because—at the same time—we were doing with SteriPen (also a supporter of TAP) and one of our corporate sponsors, who had donated 40 SteriPens for our most environmentally conscious CEOs to use with their groups in Asia, Africa, Central and South America.

“As Planeterra works with G Adventures to introduce as many sustainable initiatives as possible, it was only natural that we joined hands with TAP to get the collective message out to spread awareness with the impacts of disposable plastic water bottles. We supported them through social media cross promotion last year.”

When asked how they feel about using SteriPens rather than disposable water bottles on our trips, some of our CEOs had this to say:

  • “It’s a great way to underline the impact of plastic use — and start a conversation with our travellers. “
  • “Because it’s a great way to lead by example. It’s our way of showing the world how important preserving the environment is to our industry.”
  • “I don’t want to spend money buying a plastic bottle of water—I feel frustrated when I see yet another plastic bottle discarded in the places I travel to with my groups.”
  • ” [SteriPen] not only saves plastic bottles, it saves the environment and lets our travellers experience the destinations as they once were.
CEO Gabo explaining SteriPen to his group.

CEO Gabo explaining SteriPen to his group.


You can do your bit by carrying your own reusable bottles when travelling—and filling up with fresh, clean water whenever you can. A lot of our hotels in areas without potable water are offering water-filling stations—and those that don’t might be willing to boil water on request. You can also treat your own water with purification devices, and there’s no need to suffer through the taste of iodine tablets: systems, such as SteriPen, don’t leave an aftertaste.

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