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December 29, 20176 min readTravel

Create a Zero Waste To-Go Kit for your Budget


Welcome to my post on my zero waste to-go kit! These are the 5 items I think everyone should have to live more sustainably. These 5 things are also what I thought were the easiest to change but also had the largest impact on my trash output. I’ve included an inexpensive option to switch to and a more bouji, more expensive option if you have a little more cash to spend. Thanks for tuning in!


When I first started to transition to a zero waste lifestyle, I was in college and was pretty much living my life out of my backpack. Between work, classes in different buildings, the library, the coffee shop, etc, I kept all my essentials on my back and ready to go.

As I was living life on the go, I wanted to identify change some of my habits to be more eco-friendly. These were the first 5 items I switched out to live a more zero waste lifestyle.

I suggest keeping these in a bundle together in your bag or in your car!

Looking to transition to a zero waste lifestyle? Check out the 5 items that I carry in my zero waste to-go kit! Carrying these around will help you avoid making trash. Bonus, you can also get these items for less than $5 total!

1. Utensils

I love food.

To ensure that I can eat what I what when I want it to guilt free (from an environmental standpoint and not a caloric one) I carry around a fork, spoon, and a pair of chopsticks.

This way I’m always ready for whatever food life throws at me.

Inexpensive Option:

Take them from the ones you already have!

Cost: \$0

Bouji Options:

If you want to have a dedicated to-go set, check out this lightweight bamboo set.

Cost: \$13

2. Napkin

Reusable cotton cloths are hanky (terrible handy pun) to have around!

Wipe your hands, sop up spills, wrap up a sandwich, blow your nose, really, the sky’s the limit with these bad boy.

Inexpensive option:

Cut up an old t-shirt or pair of sheets! I do this ALL THE TIME. Plus is helps keep old t-shirts out of the landfill (or compost).

Cost: \$0

Bouji Option:

Invest in these absorbent yet soft large cotton tea towels.

Cost: \$19

3. Water bottle

Single-use plastic water bottles are the bane of every zero waster’s life. They things have penetrated almost all areas of our ecosystem and are among the largest contributors to ocean plastic pollution.

An easy way to combat this is by carrying around a water bottle.

Not only will you help save the environment, but you’ll also save big bucks!

Water fountains are everywhere, and if you can’t find one, run into a coffee shop and politely ask that they fill it up for you. I’ve never had any trouble with this before.

Inexpensive options:

Hopefully, you already have one at home you can dust off and bring with you.

Or you can upcycle a glass jar. Perhaps you bought peanut butter, jam, or coconut oil in a sealable glass jar? That works perfectly!

Cost: \$0

If you don’t though, try a mason jar! They have a lot of uses like snack containers, compost holders, etc. And you can get them super cheap at thrift stores.

Cost: \$3

Bouji Option:

I invested in this double insulated water bottle. It keeps my water cold for such a long time and looks pretty snazzy too.

Cost: \$28

RELATED: How to Reuse Your Old Glass Jars

4. Reusable tote

Keep a thin tote rolled up in your bag! You never know when you might want to swing by the grocery store, pick up some books from the library, or carry takeout home on a whim.
Carrying a tote ensures you never will have to take a plastic bag.

Inexpensive Option:

Once again, hopefully, you have one of these lying around.

However, if you don’t, have no fear! You can make one in like 20 minutes using an old t-shirt.

I also highly recommend checking out the thrift store! I've found a couple of woven baskets that work perfectly for my groceries. And they were about \$2.

Cost: \$0

Bouji Option:

Try this cute recycled tote (that's made with fair labor practices)!

Cost: \$15

RELATED: Easy Zero Waste Swaps

5. Produce bags

This one isn’t quite as necessary as the others, but I certainly think it’s helpful.

I carry around one or two produce bags in case I decide I need to pick up some cookies from a bakery or what not. I can slip my goodies into these bags and ensure that I’m not putting them in a plastic clamshell or sleeve.

Inexpensive option:

Use those shoe bags you get when you purchase a new pair of shoes! Or old pillow cases.

Or you can follow this tutorial to make one. Try using an old shirt (I know I have a love affair with these) for your bag material too to get it a cheap project, ensuring that you probably only need to purchase \$1 of cord.

Cost: \$1

Bouji Option:

Try these cotton produce bags for all your bulk shopping needs.

Cost: \$15


Wrapping it up

Thanks for sticking with me! I hope that this started to get your mind jogging on a few easy things you can bring with you on the go to live more zero waste! And like always, feel free to leave any questions or comments down below :)

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Looking to transition to a zero waste lifestyle? Check out the 5 items that I carry in my zero waste to-go kit! Carrying these around will help you avoid making trash. Bonus, you can also get these items for less than $5 total!

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Hi, I'm Taylor

Amateur adult. Zero waste zealot. Personal finance fiend. Spicy food supporter. I’m an mid 20’s gal living in Denver, Colorado. My love of the outdoors has cultivated my zero waste lifestyle, which inadvertently fueled my passion for personal finance. Cheers to everyone interested in lessening their footprint while growing their wallet!


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