WHAT IS SUSTAINABLE TRAVEL ABOUT?
The World Commission on Environment and Development defines it simply as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs,” while the World Tourism Organization specifies it is the “management of all resources in such a way that economic, social, and aesthetic needs can be fulfilled while maintaining cultural integrity, essential ecological processes, biological diversity, and life support systems.”
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
The sustainable travel movement is strong and growing and includes multiple organizations around the world that are seeking to educate people about how they can help. Many of the suggestions are simple, can be easily instituted, and will make a difference. Whether you are going to a highly-developed urban center or rural setting in a less developed country, as a responsible tourist you should be knowledgeable about your destination, seek awareness of the impact that your presence has on the local population and environment, and attempt to minimize negative impacts.
- Learn about current environmental issues in the places you are visiting. Different regions will have different situations based on their ecosystems.
- Learn about the effects of mass tourism on beaches, mountains, wetlands, deserts, etc. and then seek to counter those effects.
- Use water sparingly.
- If tap water is safe where you are travelling, carry a Reusable Water Bottle.
- Save electricity.
- Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.
- Buy Local, Eat Local.
- Don’t litter! Even if you notice the locals doing so, try to find a container to dispose of your litter.
- Don’t disturb the wildlife.
- If you go camping, make sure you have any necessary permits and follow local park rules.
- Research your destination.
- If you don’t already have proficiency, learn at least a few basic phrases in your host community’s language.
- Body language is also important.
- Find out about local taboos and customs.
- Bring small, thoughtful gifts from home if you know that you are going to be spending time with a local family or in a community.
- Respect for local culture.
- Buy locally produced products and services. Don’t bargain too much over an extra dollar or two that will go a lot farther for your seller than for you.
- Go Local. Stay in locally owned accommodations, eat at locally owned restaurants, and hire local guides.
- Contribute something to the place or community you are visiting, beyond just the money you are spending to get what you want.
PACK FOR A PURPOSE
Their mission is to positively impact communities around the world by assisting travelers who want to take meaningful contributions to the destinations they visit. Please click on the link below for more