Advantages of Learning the Eco Traveler’s Language

Going green means being aware of what is harmful to the environment and has come to be associated with caring for the planet. When you travel, you may encounter some eco traveling enthusiasts or some of the attractions you’ll visit implement eco-friendly policies. To deal with this kind of situations properly, you may need to understand the concepts and statements that are typically used to express the purpose and passion of ‘go green aficionados. On the other hand, if you yourself is a ‘go green’ advocate, maintain your good habits even if you are in a different place. Don’t allow language barrier to stop you from conveying your preference. Sometimes we tend to bend our practice and just accept what is offered to us due to our difficulty in expressing and explaining our preference. At times, we may stay away from a conversation with an eco-friendly topic since the vocabulary and concepts being used are unfamiliar to us. Make sure that you can relate and will not be intimidated when you hear these words. Learn it, to have a more meaningful interaction with eco traveling enthusiasts. 

Some of the many benefits of knowing ‘go green’ concepts are listed below. Moreover, to guide you on how to talk like an eco traveler, some expressions and questions are also provided. 


1. To be able to relate to the worldwide topic ‘eco-friendly’.

A common topic in conversation around the world is about the environment. Many are becoming more conscious of the environmental state and supports the protection and preservation of it. Understanding concepts about ‘going green’ will enable you to easily relate to anyone who is talking about it. Since it directly affects us may we be in our hometown or in other places, many are getting interested in discussing it. That’s why being able to understand and talk about environmental preservation and protection in English is a useful skill. Being a worldwide concern, oral presentation and printed materials are delivered in English to make sure that it would reach a wider audience, and can be understood by different people across the globe. You may also hear this topic from TV news programs or even see ‘go green’ catchphrases from T-shirts, billboards, mugs, posters, buttons. recycling bins and reusable shopping bags.

Some of the helpful vocabulary and concepts you need to know are: 

Go Green

Green is the color of nature. Going green means to adopt an environmentally friendly lifestyle by doing things such as buying local, reducing, reusing and recycling whenever possible and choosing products that are non-toxic. It is a popular term to describe a process that consumes little energy or produces little waste. Meanwhile, for manufacturers, it means meeting a high environmental standard.

Eco-friendly or environmentally friendly

This refers to a service, a product or activity that is designed to have little or no damaging effect on the environment. Eco-friendly products promote green living that helps to conserve energy and also prevent air, water, and noise pollution.


Greenwashing is the practice of labeling products “eco-friendly” or “environmentally friendly” but it may not be what truly it is. It is aimed at helping companies increase their sales by making unsubstantiated or misleading claims about the environmental benefits of their service, product or practice. It is used to appeal to environmentally conscious buyers by enticing them that the product or service they are offering is efficient in using power or cost-effective over time.


Being sustainable means causing little or no damage to the environment and therefore able to continue at the same level for a long time. In tourism, it means  trying to use modes of transportation and raw materials that do not harm the environment or use as much as finite resources or resources that can run out


This term describes a more natural way of producing without the use of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, or other artificial agents, therefore generate less harmful waste into the earth and the atmosphere. This term is commonly used in farming vegetables and fruits, as well as raising livestock.


This means that the raw material is made from a natural plant or animal. It is capable of being decomposed by bacteria or other living organisms thus decay rapidly and return to nature.


Recycling is the process of converting waste into reusable material. It can also mean reusing the same material for other things. Instead of simply throwing away things, recycling or upcycling is being considered as alternatives.


This pertains to the addition of any substance or any form of energy to the environment that makes land, water or air dirty and unsafe and may cause harmful and poisonous effects to people.


When a product is non-toxic, it means it does not contain any poisonous substances, thus doesn’t harm the environment. It is generally safe to eat, use or breathe the product.


2. To express your eco-friendly choices and decisions

Once you have adopted a ‘go green’ lifestyle you are more careful and intentional in choosing what to use and consume. Since you have different factors to consider, it is only natural to express your choices, so the people you are dealing with will know your preferences. 

Here are some of the common eco enthusiasts’ preferences and statements. 

  • I’m bringing my shopping bag.
  • I’m looking for a recycling bin.
  • I like to use a paper cup.
  • I don’t need a plastic straw.
  • I’m okay to walk.
  • I’d like to rent a bicycle.
  • I’m looking for LED lights.
  • I prefer to take organized carpools with fellow tourists to get to that attraction.


3. To spark a conversation and connect with like-minded individuals.

A lot of people are turning towards a “green” mindset. Saving our planet and our resources seems to be one of the priorities of many. Therefore, it is not surprising that on your travels you may encounter some people who are also into sustainability. Start a conversation with them and learn more about their ‘go green’ efforts. Meanwhile, if you yourself is an eco traveling enthusiast, let them know about your advocacy and your efforts to make a change for our environment. This helps in establishing a good rapport with fellow eco-travelers. Oftentimes, simply asking them a question can be a good conversation starter.

Here are some of the common eco-traveler questions:

  • How do I turn this off?
  • Can I return my bottles here?
  • Is this bin for bottles?
  • Is there a trash bin that separates biodegradable and nonbiodegradable?
  • Where can I buy a reusable bottle?
  • Where can I buy a reusable bag?
  • Is there a used or second-hand clothing store around here?
  • Do you organize carpooling here?
  • Do you have any hostels in the area?
  • Do you rent a hybrid car?
  • Is there a nearby restaurant that specializes in serving local food with a low carbon footprint?
  • Do you prefer staying in a shared sociable lodging?


4. To influence

Sometimes even just speaking about ‘going green’ can influence others. It may help draw the attention of those around you on your advocacy and bring awareness to the environmental issues that affect us all. A thoughtful quote about the environmental damage and your attitude to it can help get your message across. You’ll never know how a simple statement can make a huge impact on those around you. Since some of the important issues in the ‘go green’ movement are resource and energy conservation, and preventing pollution, you may use these topics to get your message out there and raise awareness. Word out on the importance of managing and preserving the world’s natural resources by using a catchy “go green” phrases.

To encourage a green lifestyle, here are the catchphrases you may use:

  • Living the green life.
  • Nurture nature.
  • Live green, love green, think green.
  • Think green, act green.
  • Show you care, do your share.
  • Feeling blue? Go green.
  • Get into the green scene.


To raise the awareness of the importance of not polluting, you may use the following catchphrases:

  • Clean and green.
  • A green planet is a clean planet.
  • Keep green and keep our planet clean.
  • The solution is less pollution.
  • Go green to keep our air clean.
  • Be clean, go green.
  • Want greener? go green.
  • Be pollution-free.
  • Being green is staying clean.
  • Clean and green.
  • Clean city – green city.
  • Go green and make the environment clean.


To save energy and resources here are the catchphrase you can use:

  • 100% eco-friendly.
  • Be eco-friendly and go green.
  • Don’t be mean, go green.
  • Conserve energy to save on green.
  • Buy green to save green.
  • Make conservation a habit.
  • Act like you live here and conserve our resources.
  • Turn off the lights and conserve energy.
  • Buy local.
  • Go green and save paper.
  • It does not take much energy to conserve energy.


To encourage recycling or upcycling, some catchy phrases you can use are: 

  • You will always have more when you need less.
  • Save paper, save trees, save the planet.
  • Be smart and recycle.
  • Reduce, reuse, recycle.
  • Don’t be trashy – recycle.
  • Complete the cycle buy recycled.
  • Keep calm and bring your own bag.
  • Feel fantastic and recycle your plastic.


Knowing how to talk green seems small and simple, but when they spread out and applied, this may raise awareness and inspire others who are not yet into the ‘go green’ movement to join. This simple way of talking to your fellow travelers about ‘going green’ may just lead them to apply it when they go back to their hometown. If so, this means that it will be applied in different parts of the world. The more you talk to strangers and the more you talk about ‘going green’, the more this advocacy spreads out and the more chances that others would be inspired to join and start to care about sustainability. There are so many different ways to contribute to saving the environment, and you can start even by just knowing the vocabulary, questions, and statements, to talk about it effectively. The savvier and familiar you are with these concepts the more you would sound effective and compelling.

Inspire others to go green! Learn how to talk about it effectively and practice using the listed concepts, catchphrases, and expressions above.  

Book your online Travel English conversation class with one of our tutors to put into practice the ‘go green’ phrases and concepts you’ve learned. 


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Kaycie Gayle is a freelance content writer and a digital publisher. Her writings are mostly about, travel, culture, people, food, and communication.