More and more holidaymakers are considering the environmental impact of their holiday and actively searching for more sustainable options with ecotourism certifications like Green Tourism helping them do that. A recent survey by online booking site Booking.com discovered that over half (55%) of global travellers report being more determined to make sustainable travel choices than they were a year ago.
Our top tips for a more eco-holiday
Organising a holiday takes a great deal of effort and is exciting but can be stressful too. So why not plan a few eco options which will actually make your well-deserved break even more fulfilling. Be part of the ecotourism movement and see how you can still enjoy the perfect holiday!
Here are some helpful suggestions if you want to keep your environmental impact down while you are away and still have a great time:
Think about how you travel
- Travelling can be a very carbon intensive, especially if you fly. Carbon emissions on a journey to Paris are ten times more if you fly compared to taking the Eurostar! If you must fly try a carbon offset scheme to reduce your environmental impact (https://www.carbonfootprint.com/holiday_footprint.html).
- Friends of the Earth has some great no-fly holiday ideas (https://friendsoftheearth.uk/climate-change/ethical-travel-nofly-holiday-ideas).
- Try to stick to land-based public transport if you can and make the journey a special part of your trip.
- When you reach your holiday destination hire some bikes or enjoy countryside and coastal walks. Remember to stick to marked paths so you don’t disturb wildlife and plants.
Where to stay
- Ecotourism is often directed at exotic locations that require long flights but you can reap the benefits closer to home. Low carbon, low impact holidays that respect the earth are all around us. Camping or glamping in the UK in summer can help you, your friends and family to reconnect with nature.
- Ecotourism hosts are likely to be more environmentally aware. Expect to see sustainable materials on camping sites such as canvas tents, local firewood and eco-friendly amenities such as showers, loos and recycling pods. Look out for organic & ethical cleaning products too!
- If you do decide to travel abroad make sure you understand the ‘real need for people to recognise their impact and how much water, waste and energy you should consume compared to the local population of your destination location’ (WTTC). This means living like the locals!
When you’re there
- Always respect nature wherever you are. Deal with your rubbish carefully and use recycling facilities when you can. Choose not to use single use plastic at any time. Bring reusable bottles with you and don’t use bottled water unless absolutely essential. UK campsites will always have water on tap.
- Try to support local amenities, shops and restaurants while on holiday. These are often small businesses that rely on the tourist trade to survive. Many will offer you a unique experience and provide fantastic memories.
- Get outside and learn about biodiversity and the impact of climate change not from books but out in the wild.
What to pack
- Pack light – use your holiday as an excuse to try out a minimalist wardrobe and you may even be tempted to continue this at home.
- Plan to take less toiletries wherever you go. A great solution is organic All Purpose Castile Soap. A concentrated version is a must which means only a small bottle is required when luggage space is tight. All Purpose Castile Soap can be used as a body wash, shampoo, laundry liquid and surface cleaner as well as toothpaste. The uses are endless!
Most of all experience how fulfilling and how restorative being an ecotourism holidaymaker can be. And try to continue some of the sustainable options you tried back at home!