Find out about the small changes in your travel planning that can help you become a more sustainable tourist. Incorporating these subtle changes has a large effect in the long run, benefiting the nature and communities of the areas you visit.
These steps can easily be embedded into your next trip, and here’s how.
When booking your next holiday trip, make sure to do some research beforehand. Choose an area that is committed to maintaining sustainability, protecting natural resources/wildlife, as well as the people and the cultural heritage instead of exploiting them. You will be contributing to the efforts made to achieve long-term development and you will be supporting the local tourism sector and while having a great travel experience. Many local tourism offices and boards are certified with various labels indicating their compromise to sustainability.
Our sustainable destination tip: Slovenia
Chose Sustainable & Local Transportation
When travelling to a not so near destination, an airplane may seem like the perfect fit, yet we all know the impact of flying in the environment. If inevitable you can always compensate your CO2 emissions or choose for direct flights to reduce your carbon footprint.
Trains are also a great way to travel since they emit less carbon emissions. If you chose to go by car, keep in mind that the more passengers on the car, the lesser your carbon impact will be!
Once you have landed at your destination, try to use local transportation. Buses, trains and bikes are an efficient way to get around and enjoy your sustainable holiday.
Support Local Businesses
Rather than putting your money into global food and retail chains, seek out what is local around the area. From local dining experience, shops and vendors as well as activities. Supporting local businesses also ensures that the local economy can benefit from tourism and be involved in the development of a destination as a sustainable destination.
Respect the natural and cultural heritage
In order to do sustainable tourism, you have to understand your position as a guest visiting a place and therefore it is important to be mindful of the culture around you, respecting the environment and the community.
Reuse, Reduce & Recycle
Make your travels more sustainable by reducing waste. The best way in which you can reduce your plastic is by bringing a reusable water bottle on your trip. But you can even go further with environmentally friendly items, such as small containers for your snacks which will help with reducing your use of plastic. Instead of constantly using a plastic straw, opt for a stainless straw. As mentioned in the second tip, taking public transportation or eco-friendly means of travel is also a great way to reduce emissions. These ways can help you leave a smaller footprint.
The European Safari Company also takes part in sustainable tourism practices. We combine the enjoyment of adventure, while remaining dedicated to protecting and contributing to the regeneration of nature, and supporting local communities. Through our safaris, travellers get to experience the natural beauty Europe has to offer. While enhancing their understanding of supporting the local communities and contributing to rewilding initiatives.
We are committed to ethical approaches when it comes to wildlife, such as observing wildlife at a safe distance and having a low impact with small groups. As for getting to your destination, our motto is train before plane. When it comes to reaching your destination within Europe, the best way this can be achieved is by train. Lastly, we dedicate 5% of the booking sum to Rewilding Europe's initiatives in Europe.
There you have it! Some possible ways for you to incorporate sustainable tourism into your next travel. And remember there are tons of other ways to instil responsible tourism. It only takes a couple of steps in the right direction for you to also be a part of sustainable tourism.
Text: Nathasha Panagoda as part of her Emzingo Global Impact Internship