The tourism industry
Travel providers, tourism operators and local governments have changed drastically to meet demands for responsible travel and there are no signs of them slowing down…
THE FUTURE OF TRAVEL
A shift towards conscious tourism
A mindful, aware and educated approach to social, economic and environmental responsibility within the tourism industry has been growing steadily over the past decade. Education around the longer-term challenges that tourism presents can raise community awareness and it informs future decision-making for the travel industry all over the world.
Kathmandu, Nepal. Photo credit: Wanderlust with a Purpose
Changes with impact
As people become more aware of alternative options, this applies pressure on organisations and government officials to consider more sustainable, responsible products and services for the travel industry overall.
We are already seeing the result of this. Many tour operators are now pledging a percentage of their profits to support local charities and not-for-profit organisations located in the destinations they operate within. These service providers are becoming increasingly popular as customers shift their thinking and opt to book with tour operators that give back to the community.
Numerous hotels and resorts are looking into ways to reduce water consumption, from installing water efficient shower heads to replanting their gardens with native plants that require less water, less regularly. Others are converting tropical gardens into fruit and vegetable gardens that supply their restaurants with seasonal produce all year round.
Some destinations are starting to encourage visitors to commute by bicycle to assist with lowering their carbon footprint and to see the local area from a new perspective. Bike tours and walking tours are often some of the best ways to explore new places, allowing travellers to slow down, connect with the locals and really soak in the atmosphere of the location.
As tourists begin to expect these types of experiences and initiatives as standard practice, the travel industry must adapt and change to keep up with customer expectations.
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