How Allianz is helping Australians make ‘Sustainable Swaps’ this festive season

Last updated on 07 December 2023
A present wrapped in a linen napkin next to a ball of string and a pinecone.

What’s on your to-do list for the holiday season?

Chances are, it’s shopping to do, decorations to buy, and food to prepare – things that are on your customers’ minds too.

But for an increasing number of us, there’s another consideration this festive season.

New research commissioned by Allianz shows that 75% of surveyed Australians are eager to make their holiday celebrations more sustainable.

That’s why Allianz has partnered with DIY and upcycling expert, Geneva Vanderzeil, to showcase simple swaps for a more sustainable festive period.

We have ideas for hosting, decorating your home or table for a festive meal, and clever gifting.

Shez Ford, Chief General Manager, Consumer at Allianz Australia, says, “Our research has shown us that creating a more sustainable festive season has been on the minds of Australians for some time.1 And better understanding how to easily make the change can be a major drawcard for most Australians.2

“At Allianz, we’re committed to showing Australians that making sustainable changes doesn’t have to be a large task – there are many simple swaps that anyone can make to lead a more sustainable lifestyle during the festive season and beyond.”

Whatever your plans, there’s always scope to make festive celebrations a little greener. Explore our Sustainable Swaps below and share them with others who may want to reduce their festive footprint too.

Happy sustainable holidays!

Support a more sustainable lifestyle during the festive season and beyond with these tips.
  • Swap a plastic tree for a living tree – Decorate your favourite house plant or create a festive native arrangement. If you’re good at DIY and crafting, you could even create your own tree using recycled materials.
  • Swap inefficient incandescent lights for LED or solar lighting – A simple swap this festive season. Check the lights that light up your home and make the switch to LED or solar powered lighting. LED lights use approximately 90% less energy than incandescent bulbs.
  • Swap online shopping for buying local – Online shopping can generate carbon emissions and packaging waste. So why not shop local and support your community?
  • Swap gift wrap for ‘gifts-as-wrap’ – Avoid the waste caused by disposable wrapping paper by using reusable alternatives. Try using a tea towel, scarf or clothing, reusable drawstring bags, or decorated boxes that can be reused for storage, or baskets or hampers.
  • Swap ‘having’ gifts for ‘doing’ gifts – Experiential gifts save on packaging, emissions, and clutter. To prevent more unnecessary clutter this holiday season, swap a supermarket advent calendar for a homemade one. Each day could include treats from home or activities like movie nights, supporting community events or making decorations.
  • Swap plastic table décor for eco-friendly options – Single use plastics pose a serious environmental problem. Swap plastic plates, cups, cutlery and decorations for reusable or biodegradable alternatives.
  • Swap a meat dish for a meat-free dish – Meat dishes tend to have a greater carbon footprint than equivalent meat-free dishes. Swapping just one dish can make an impact on your festive footprint.
  • Swap buying new for buying pre-loved – Consider buying gifts and things you need for hosting from online marketplaces or second-hand thrift stores. You can even rent or borrow equipment, such as extra tables, chairs, serving utensils, platters and decorations.
  • Swap long journeys for staycations – There’s no place like home. Planning a local trip reduces emissions and lets you enjoy your local surroundings and nature during the holiday season. By appreciating green spaces in your community, you’re also helping to preserve them for years to come.
  • Swap wasteful accommodation for sustainable stays – Whatever your budget or preferences, green accommodation options with full amenities are available to take care of you and the environment. Consider providers who work with the local community to reduce energy use and minimise waste.
  • Swap ride hailing services for walking, cycling and public transport – Absorb local culture and swap car services for walking tours, cycling, or public transport. It’s not only educational, but also decreases road congestion and your carbon footprint.

1. 61% of surveyed Australians have thought about making their festive season more sustainable for a while now.

2. 78% of surveyed Australians would consider being sustainable during the festive season if they could easily make the change.

This article has been prepared by Allianz Australia Insurance Limited ABN 15 000 122 850 AFSL 234708 (“Allianz”). Information contained in this article is accurate as at 7 December 2023 and may be subject to change. In some cases, information has been provided to us by third parties and while that information is believed to be accurate and reliable, its accuracy is not guaranteed in any way. Any opinions expressed constitute our views at the time of issue and are subject to change. Neither Allianz, nor its employees or directors give any warranty of accuracy or accept responsibility for any loss or liability incurred by you in respect of any error, omission or misrepresentation in this article.
Pureprofile, on behalf of Allianz Australia, carried out the research from 6 October to 10 October 2023. The study encompassed a sample of more than 1,000 Australians, ensuring national representativeness, with a demographic profile aligned with the 2021 ABS Census data regarding age, gender, and geographic location.
Allianz acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we live and work across Australia. We pay our respect to First Nations Elders past and present.

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