How to green living in Saigon as an expat
Moving overseas can have a huge impact on the environment but it can also offer new opportunities for you to become more environmentally friendly. Hoozing has put together some advice and steps for you to take towards a more sustainable expat life, especially for green living in Saigon.
Regardless of whether you are a new or experienced expat, anytime is a good time to tweak your usual rituals and start (or continue further) eco-friendly practices. Below are just some ideas to help in implementing a greener lifestyle for any stage of the expat process:
1. Consider Greener Modes of Transportation: Biking, Public Transportation, Electric Car
Relocation means new commuting opportunities, especially in Vietnam, as you are surrounded by motorbikes, traffic jams every day. Depending on your distance from your home to your new workplace and the environment in between the two, this might open up the opportunity to have a more active or social commute that does not require solo driving. Some methods to consider:
Cycling or Walking
Cycling is one of the greatest forms of the commute because it is active, making it beneficial health-wise (physically and mentally), and it can also save you money on car expenses. If you are really close to your workplace, walking is also an option.
If you are living in a big city like Ho Chi Minh or Hanoi that has convenient public transportation, taking the bus, subway or train may be an option. Without having to use a car you will personally avoid juggling through traffic, and you can use the time to catch up on reading, listening to some music, or maybe just some people-watching. But keep in mind that Vietnam does not have a subway yet so the bus is your primary choice.
2. Become Familiar with Waste Removal System and Trash Separation
Removal of rubbish is not the most glamorous of topics, but it is a significant practice that differs from country to country. Also important to note is the recycling protocol: what can or cannot be recycled?
Become familiar with the rules, know where you drop off items, along with what and when it is picked up. It requires minimal effort.
3. Support Local Green Business
Even though you may have loyalty to certain chain brands you know from back home, be open to explore the local green business. See what they are offering and don’t just stick with what you are familiar to. Supporting local businesses, as it cuts down on the environmental expense caused by transportation, promotes a greener lifestyle and also encourages local development.
4. Borrow or Buy, Sell and Trade Used Goods
Even though it can be nice to purchase a brand new product, in many cases a pre-used item or simply borrowing something from an acquaintance can sufficiently serve the purpose that we thought we needed to make a new purchase for.
In terms of buying previously owned items, often supermarkets have bulletin boards with postings of people selling used goods. Expats in the HCM fanpage or groups are full of people who want to get rid of their belongings quickly and for bargains.
5. Sharing Is Caring
Share what you do have — books, household items, etc. Did you finish reading a book? Trade it or give it to another expat. Especially English books are especially a hot commodity with expats. Do you have leftover food, or bought too much? Share it with your friends or coworkers. Sharing food is also a great way to make new friends. Don’t just throw it out.
6. Make Small, Positive Changes to Your Regular Routine
There are many habits we undertake in the course of a day that we can be more mindful of and easily alter to be more green. Some of these common daily changes could be
- Bringing a reusable bag to pack your groceries;
- Taking a reusable, refillable mug when you are getting a takeaway coffee at a café instead of using a disposable cup;
- Taking shorter hot showers;
- Turning off the light in a room when you are not in it;
- Printing both sides when possible;
- Turning up the air conditioner
Essentially any proactive step to lead a more environmentally friendly life is a good one, whether you can adopt all of these practices and other ones not listed here, or just a few of them, every little step counts. In time all of this adds up to make you – a more aware and responsible expat.
For expats who want to find safe and cheap accommodation in Ho Chi Minh city to settle down. Hoozing supplies experiencing a fast & professional rental process to meet your requirements. You can check out our blog for ways to break the lease contract! Contact us directly via 19003100 or our main website to make a request.
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