“Green” has evolved to symbolize “eco-friendly” or “environmentally conscious.” As a result, responsible travel or green travel became popular as a wide phrase that encompassed ecotourism and responsible travel practices that generally aim to benefit the environment as well as the social and economic well-being of the local people.
When done correctly, green travel is the polar opposite of mass tourism. It’s all about attempting to make better decisions that help to reduce the negative effects of travel. We do not influence the carbon emissions of the planes we fly in, the chemicals used by the hotels where we stay, or the plastics used in souvenirs sold in the places we visit. However, we may choose more environmentally friendly modes of transportation, hotels, tour operators, and shopping strategies that are less harmful to the environment and provide greater benefits to residents.
As the green movement gained traction, several businesses demonstrated a willingness to greenwash in exchange for the green they desired most: money. Adjectives like “all-natural,” “organic,” and “post-consumer recycled content” became meaningless because claims were rarely validated or verified by unbiased third parties.
It aims to educate travellers, raise cash for conservation, directly assist local economic development and political empowerment, and create respect for diverse cultures and human rights. Those who participate in ecotourism believe it is vital so that future generations can enjoy portions of the environment that have been relatively unspoiled by human intrusion. This is now the working definition for most significant ecotourism studies, including several university programs.
Ecotourism caters to people who are environmentally and socially conscientious. In general, it emphasizes volunteerism, personal development, and environmental stewardship.
1. Choose a carbon-neutral adventure
While travelling, not all carbon emissions may be avoided. You can choose travels that offer a variety of adventures for which it has evaluated carbon emissions, decreased where possible, and offset what remains. The emissions from transportation, lodging, activities, and garbage have been calculated, and the cost of offsetting is included in the trip price.
2. Impact of Numbers
Smaller groups have a lower environmental impact, therefore choose an environmentally conscious small group tour operator. Before making a reservation, inquire about the size of the group. While you have their attention, why not inquire about how the operator contributes to the community you will be visiting?
3. Local tour guides
Hire local guides to learn more about the culture, landscape, and wildlife. Furthermore, more of your money will be reinvested in the local community. Poachers have turned conservationists and guides in many nations, from Kenya to Sri Lanka, and the more we help them, the better.
Remember to consider diversity – seeing a place through the eyes of local people. They pass on the experience and varied perspectives for a place. Travelling with them enables us to explore places with wider ideas and makes us filled with interest for further trips.
4. Energy from renewable sources
If you’re on the road, look for places that use as much renewable energy as possible. Make an effort to limit your energy consumption: Do not use the air conditioner unless necessitates. Try spending less time with gadgets and immerse yourself in the experience of Nature and cherish every moment.
5. Consumption with awareness
With every purchase, you can help the local economy – and the local environment. Choose ethnically diverse, local gift shops, artisan merchants, and markets; all are excellent ways to meet new people while ensuring that your money is put to good use.
Reduce your consumption of the following non-Eco-friendly products: cattle, leather, soy, lumber, rubber, palm oil, cocoa, pulp/paper, and plastic. It is best to avoid products derived from endangered species, shells, or coral. Bring a reusable shopping bag and a water bottle with you. Most importantly, don’t litter waste and dispose it properly when travelling closely in nature.
6. Food awe-inspiring (plant-based) food
We all know that our vacation diets can be carbon-intensive and harm biodiversity. Because intensive agriculture necessitates enormous areas of land, choose plant-based diets while avoiding meat and dairy. Avoid foreign supermarkets and the related food miles by opting for locally sourced, seasonal produce and shopping at local markets. Eat at local, minority-owned cafés and restaurants in districts outside of the city centre for some of the best food in town.