Everyone yearns to be a Traveller, Wanderer, Explorer, Wayfarer, Globetrotter but the number of people "traveling responsibly" is pretty less. However, people are becoming aware of it in acceleration but they lack proper knowledge or consider it as "too much to do". Well, that’s not the case, traveling responsibly basically means being aware of how your presence affects the destination – culturally & socially and making attempts to make a positive impact. It can simply start from being an aware traveler and making small changes to be as sustainable as possible.
These are 5+ easy peasy ways I use to travel responsibly and trust me you won't have to put much effort to do this.
Pack it Right
Most countries now are banning single-use plastic and charging hefty fines for carrying plastic in. I pack my clothes in reusable/cotton foldaway bags and use the same when I reach my destination for shopping/carrying my things around.
Although I hate using soaps, I've recently discovered some really good soap/shampoo/conditioner/3in1 bars. This sometimes can be expensive on the pocket but believe me they last for a longer time. The best part is that it is chemical-free + pretty easy to carry.
Sometimes I also use small reusable bottles to carry my things around but I bring them back without fail. (to reuse, duh)
I love my fancy sipper and carry it daily. It has reduced my spend on packaged water and single-use plastic as well.
Also, the point here is if you carry your bottle, you will bring it back. If you carry the packaged water, there are high chances of you leaving it back and creating unwanted pollution. Plus that bottle will remain there for the years to come. So just get your bottle!
Plastic straws are long gone now and most of the places have adopted that. I usually avoid using a straw but if you like to use one, get a metal straw for yourself. It’s affordable and can be easily carried.
I always carry some cutlery made from Bamboo like cups/sporks it’s the best replacement for plastic cutlery.
Reduce Carbon Footprint
Nothing beats exploring places on foot thus minimizing driving around and reducing my carbon footprint. Also, I've started using public transport & carpool.
Initially using public transport was a little uncomfortable but helps me achieve my main goal.
#5 Go Local
Buying local food & visiting local café empowers local farmers and helps them grow. I've always noticed local cafés always have a warm welcoming vibe which I love the most; they are easy to talk to and helps me learn more about their culture. It’s an authentic experience.
#6 Eco Stay
Choosing to stay at hostels/Eco stays is a new addition to my list. Also, switching off AC when you're stepping out, keeping all electronics unplugged unless using it are few little things you can be careful about and save electricity.
#7 Protect wildlife
I love all animals and I am against captivating and interacting with animal/animal activities/tours. Keeping animals in captivity for human entertainment is unacceptable. If you're interested in wildlife tourism choose the ethical ones. Avoid riding on animals and touching/feeding them.
Fran Kearney from World Animal Protection says “As a rule, if you can ride, hug or have a selfie with a wild animal, you can be sure it is cruel.”
Raising voice against animal cruelty is a must to stop these poor creatures from being taken away from their natural habitat. They don’t deserve to be captivated.
DID YOU KNOW?
The sunscreen we apply on our skin has harmful chemicals that bleach the corals?
I didn’t! Until Laveen told me recently. Using “reef safe” sunscreen is the best option if you plan to enter the ocean.