Travel is such an enriching experience for most of us and it has never been easier for people to travel and discover destinations around the world. However with such an increase in tourism it’s more important than ever that we pay attention to sustainable tourism and making our travels more eco-friendly. Here are 10 simple tips:
- Research local sustainable issues
Different destinations deal with different environmental issues. Research beforehand what are the key ones to help you be extra aware of them during your travels as well as seeing if there is any small thing you can do to help.
- Eat locally grown produce
Small owned restaurants that focus on locally grown produce in season are not only great for supporting local businesses but are also a great way to experience the culture and taste delicious food.
- Buy locally made souvenirs from local crafters
Avoid the mass marketed knick-knacks that are mostly imported from abroad and rarely actually come in use for anyone. Instead, if you want to bring something back for friends or family, focus on local crafts that help tell a story.
Never buy wildlife products as this will only just help boost this black market.
- Focus on sustainable transport where possible
Where possible, try to rent a bike, walk or take public transport rather than renting a car or taxis.
- Book sustainable accommodation
There is an increase number of stylish and affordable eco-friendly hotels and hostels around the world, as well as apartment or room rental websites which makes it so much easier to live sustainably while abroad.
- Don’t leave towels on the floor
If staying in a hotel, remember to hang the towels after shower as that’s the universal sign that you would like to reuse them rather than have them washed daily.
- Bring a refillable water bottle and skip straws
When travelling you might be tempted to buy plastic bottles of water, bring a refillable water bottle and skip straws offered in restaurant or bars.
- Avoid taking paper tourist info
Instead of taking too many paper maps, brochures or other tourist info pamphlets, download apps on your phone with all the necessary info such as offline maps.
- If shopping, bring your own reusable bag or backpack
Bring a reusable bag or backpack when shopping to avoid having to take plastic bags from sellers. Any trash you might accumulate while out, hold onto it till you find somewhere to recycle.
- Research your tour operators
If you are hiring any tour operators, make sure their practices are environmentally friendly and they help make a positive difference to the people, the wildlife and the environment.