Ethical travel is one of those phrases many globetrotters mention but might not quite know what it really means. In short, ethical travel (also called ethical tourism) is simply being mindful and aware of the impact of travelers on the world they explore. How we embrace ethical travel is a personal choice, from where we choose to dine to what we pack in our suitcase.
This post may contain affiliate links from Amazon or other affiliates. Traveling In Heels may receive a small commission if you click on the link and purchase. Thank you for your support.
Embracing Ethical Travel: What Does It Really Mean?
Frequent travelers who consciously make choices to travel in a more sustainable way or ethical way can make a difference not only to you but to the experiences that you have and to the countries and places that you visit. But what does that all really mean?
Ethical travel is all about the choices that you make on your trips. You have so many choices of where to stay and what to do, as well as what you will eat. Ethical travel is all about exploring your destination with respect and reverence as the focus, rather than through entitlement or careless treatment. If your goal is to embrace ethical travel, then consider these things when planning your next travels.
Support Local Businesses
From accommodation to taxi drivers, travelers are offered an array of choices. Embracing ethical travel might mean rather than a stay at a big name chain hotel select a smaller B&B or home rental. To support local business, choose to use a local company rather than an international brand — the choice is yours. If you want to travel in a more ethical way and support the destination, choosing the local business can be the better choice.
It’s a win for you too as you’ll likely to save money supporting local and in addition, you’ll experience more of the culture and people of the place.
Dine Out Consciously
Are you someone who flies across the world to only dine at the closest McDonalds or Burger King? Check with the locals for their restaurant recommendations. Step out of your fast food comfort zone, and try out local street food.
With review sites online too, research in advance to see other restaurants that might be close to your accommodations or who’ve gotten rave reviews. Some will even support good causes, like the Fair Warung Bale restaurant in Ubud, Bali. When you dine here, your money supports local people with healthcare and free medical services.
Read More: 4 Tips to Save Money and Travel Like a Local
Rethink What You Pack
If you travel quite a lot, then you are probably a seasoned professional at packing a suitcase. However, you should think about what you are packing. Do you buy something new for each trip that you go on? Are your clothing choices ethical and sustainable?
Instead, for example, searching for ethically made and sustainable swimwear can be a good choice for your next beach trip, rather than buying an alternative made from non-sustainable sourced materials.
Consider what is in your suitcase and opt for a more sustainable footprint and not leave anything behind.
Be Kind to the Environment
Part of travel is experiencing amazing places that you have never traveled to before. But if those destinations aren’t treated well, how long will they stay that postcard-perfect?
For example, when buying plastic water bottles to take on your travels, as is common, ask yourself: will they be recycled properly once at your destination? Or will the empty bottles be left on the beach? What will happen to the environment as a result of what you carried to that destination? Think about what you do with your waste, especially in a developing country, where there may not be established resources to help with recycling and other environmental issues.