Since the COVID-19 pandemic struck us last year, traveling has come at a complete standstill. The tourism sector was the most affected by the pandemic, with travel restrictions and flight bans worldwide. Also, almost every country went for a complete lockdown on travel, restricting travellers and tourists from outside.
However, now that the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic is behind us, traveling is slowly returning to normal. Countries are slowly opening up for tourists, especially the vaccinated ones. Although the countries allow foreign travel, there are strict rules and restrictions to check for any spread and contamination of the virus. Nevertheless, it is good news for travellers and globe trotters, along with the tourism industry’s sigh of relief.
What do you mean by responsible travel?
Responsible travel is all about minimizing negative social and environmental impacts while making the place better for living and visiting. It supports the well-being of the place rather than deteriorating it. The tour operators, governments, hoteliers, local people, and most importantly, the travellers must take responsibility for their actions and try to make the whole process of traveling more sustainable.
Things to Follow for Post-COVID Travel
So, if you plan to take your first trip in a post-covid world, you must keep in mind to be a sustainable and responsible traveller. Here are a few things you might consider if you want to travel responsibly and sustainably:
Pack Light, Smart and Eco-friendly
Avoid going overboard when it comes to luggage. Make sure that you travel in a light, smart, and eco-friendly way. Keep in mind the essentials you need for the trip, like an ultra-compact camping chair (if you’re camping), and pack likewise. Also, don’t carry single-use things/objects because you will be taking something that might pollute the environment. A simple example can be taking a reusable water bottle made of steel rather than purchasing plastic water bottles and discarding them after using them.
Choose destination wisely
Always be wise in choosing your next travel destination. Try to select your destination so that the local community of that place benefits from your visit. You need to do thorough research about the place you want to visit and decide whether your trip is responsible or just following some personal whims.
Try to look out for green travel methods and don’t add to the global pollution index. Taking a flight isn’t a sustainable way to travel as the aviation industry is responsible for about 5% of global warming. If you have other options to reach your destination without flying, it is better to opt for them like buses or other means of public transport. You can also hire an electric vehicle if your destination isn’t somewhere very far.
If you plan your trips, opt for traveling during the off-season. Traveling during the peak season is expensive and burdens the environment and ecology of the destination you are traveling to. The problems of the place only exacerbate during the peak travel season. So, if you promote responsible travel, avoid it at all costs. Also, traveling during the off-season gives you a chance to meet the locals of the place and get to know them personally.
Opt for Homestays
Another way of promoting local cultures and people of the place you are traveling to is by staying in homestays and guest houses run by the local people rather than a luxurious hotel chain run by multi-millionaires. Staying at a homestay or guest house allows you to know and learn about the culture and traditions of the local people.
You can even learn a few words of the language they speak and a local food recipe that you like, enhancing your travel experience. If the place doesn’t have a local homestay or guest house, do your research and choose a hotel that practices sustainable development.
Give back to the Community
Always try to give something back to the community of the place you’re traveling. Don’t just consume the experiences a new place offers but contribute in any way you can. Instead, support the local shops and restaurants by visiting and promoting them. In this way, you are contributing to the local industry, and you might be surprised by some of these local restaurants as they serve much better food than the multinational chains of fast food joints.
Positive Effects of Pandemic on Tourism
One of the positive effects of the pandemic was that the environment throughout the globe changed for the better. The decrease in mass tourism gave Mother Earth a chance to rejuvenate and recover from the damage produced by self-seeking travellers. Many tourist destinations worldwide have seen tremendous improvements in the air and water quality and recovery of their natural habitats’ overall well-being. Wildlife has returned, and also coral reefs are restored during this period.
Now that the tourism industry is making a comeback slowly but surely, the major challenge will be sustaining these positive impacts while travellers and tourists flock back to these places. The answer to this problem is responsible travel.
Some of these tips are much easier said than done, but the next time you travel to a new place, you can be mindful and conscious about how you plan your trip. Taking one single step at a time can go a long way in responsible traveling. Imagine, even if half of the population in the world starts practicing sustainable and accountable traveling, how much better our planet will be.
About the author
Nancy S created Health Writer Hub to help you write high-quality, life-changing health content. She has been closely following the Healthcare and Medical Industry trends for quite some time. All the content is very much focused and well informed, which will enlighten your mood easily with a lot of useful information. She believes a simple change can make a big difference towards a healthy and happy lifestyle.