I'm on business travel to Southern California this week, and I was initially excited about the possibility of bringing back some fruit or other "local" delights from California to supplement our winter mostly-local diet. However, ever the realist, Tony reminded me that the food would still be getting to NC by air travel, no matter whether I bring it or whether I let the grocery store handle delivery. There's a carbon footprint either way due to the heavier weight of the airplane. Darn! Logic is logic though, and he's right.
So, I decided to spin this into a win-win posting about packing light. Now, I'm a light packer by nature. I once went to Italy with a single laptop bag and all my clothes folded inside. It helps that the conferences I'm going to don't seem to mind if I wear Chuck Taylors and jeans.
My only downfall with the whole light packing thing is that one of the few pleasures I get from traveling is running outdoors in different faraway places. But this means packing several days worth of workout clothes, shoes, socks, etc. This time, my conference is at a Fairmont Hotel, and I recalled from a stay two years ago that Fairmont gives its President's Club members complimentary workout clothes and shoes from Adidas. You can trade in the clothes as many times as you want during your stay, and everything's waiting for you upon arrival. This time, I called to request this service, and it appears that there is now a small charge for this service: it's now $10 per stay. Still well worth it, in my opinion. They also provide yoga mats and mp3 players for that same $10.
When I got to the airport I realized that there was the additional benefit of packing light. If you can fit everything into a carry-on, you can avoid the luggage charge. So, in a nod to "pocket", I'll use my $15 luggage charge to pay for the $10 fee at the hotel, and still be $5 ahead. Win-win for pocket and planet.
Pocket: 6, Planet: 9, Win-Win: 22