Eating out waste free

Eating out waste free

I am really trying to cut down on the waste that I produce. Since taking part in Plastic Free July last year I have been a lot more aware of the prevalence of single use plastics in everyday life. On a personal note I have tried to cut down on my own use of plastic straws, plastic single use cutlery and disposable water bottles.

BUT there are also many times when I’ve been caught out when eating out and kicked myself for not being more prepared. For example I often use our local Waitrose cafe in Bath because they have very little disposable products. The cups are china, they have metal cutlery and even the sugar comes in lumps, rather than packets. Imagine my disappointment, then, when I had a coffee in another branch and everything was disposable. Even the cutlery was plastic and came wrapped in plastic as well!

After this incident I vowed to be better prepared. Eating out and travelling waste free requires a lot of pre-planning which I am starting to get to grips with:

1. I have bought some metal teaspoons from a charity shop so I now put one of those in my bag, wrapped up in a cloth napkin. No more wooden stirrers or plastic spoons for my coffee.

Plastic free coffee spoon


2. Last summer I invested in this brilliant water bottle from Lakeland. I have tried many reusable water bottles for myself and the kids but this is by far the best (I promise I’m not sponsored by Lakeland!). It’s completely leakproof, keeps cold drinks cold and hot drinks stay hot.

Drinking out waste free

3. Having recently had a couple of dining experiences where the cutlery was single use plastic (and wrapped in plastic) I invested in some sporks. While they are plastic (although I had intended to buy some bamboo ones) they can be used again and again. This summer we will be travelling in mainland Europe and I wanted something I could take that would reduce our reliance on throwaway cutlery.

Eating out waste free

I recently went away for the weekend and took my trusty water bottle with me. I was delighted that the hotel room had a glass bottle of water to fill up from. I was also self-disciplined and didn’t open the small shampoo bottles in the bathroom. However I failed when ordering a cocktail which arrived with a stupid plastic stirrer and two straws! I guess I need to be more assertive as well as being better prepared.



6 thoughts on “Eating out waste free

      • Plastic really is everywhere. Even if you buy milk in a glass bottle the lid is plastic! I read Plastic Purge by Michael SanClements and it really gave me good building blocks to begin my own plastic purge. I realize that July’s experiment will have unavoidable plastic but I hope to gain significant knowledge from trying. Right now I am waiting for linen sheets to arrive because I am slowly removing plastic bedding from my bedroom. I am slowly eliminating the plastic that i can from my kitchen (saran wrap and baggies were gone long ago). Thank you again for this motivation! I am excited and nervous how I will do!

  1. I bought some bamboo straws but stuff doesn’t taste as good out of them. Then again I am sure my daughter, who is the one who likes straws, can get used to them.

  2. I never go anywhere without my trusty water bottle (to be honest, paying for water is just silly, never mind the plastic involved!), but I really like the idea of carrying round a teaspoon/spork as well! Must put one in my bag!

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