James Morris - Sep 5, 2021
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Sustainable tourism knows neither traffic jams that push south, nor airplanes that are delayed jetting to Mediterranean islands. There are numerous ways to behave as a tourist in a more sustainable manner. The fact that hotels offer to no longer wash their towels every day saves them money, yes, but it also reduces water consumption and water pollution from detergents.

Choosing small local accommodations instead of hotel chains and local restaurants instead of international fast food ensures that the money stays at the travel destination. These are only some examples of how to enjoy a more sustainable trip. In this context, Tourism-Review brings you the top 7 travel tips for a sustainable vacation.

Nearby Destinations

You travel sustainably when the holiday destinations are nearby. Distant islands or other continents don't always have to be visited, because sometimes our local lakes and mountains are even better.

This is also seen in the trend of micro-tourism. This includes taking a city tour in your own city, camping in the neighboring village instead of abroad, taking public transport to the end of your city and exploring the area there. And much more.

Plane, Train or Bus?

Of all types of transport, flying is the most environmentally damaging one. The emission of greenhouse gases is enormous and even a single flight can produce more CO2 than you would otherwise produce in the whole year.

If you travel by bus and train, the climate is much better off. Long-distance buses and trains emit an average of 29 or 32 grams of greenhouse gases per kilometer driven.

Nevertheless, if you still choose to fly, you should at least do it sensibly. Instead of taking a three-week vacation with many flights, be gentle and fly only once during the three weeks. This reduces the burden on your personal climate gas footprint by a third.

Moreover, for a more sustainable vacation try offsetting CO2 emissions. Various climate initiatives calculate how much CO2 the flight in question causes and allow the climate-damaging emissions to be offset by donating money to climate protection projects. The compensation is controversial, but definitely better than doing nothing at all.

More Sustainable Means of Transport

This is connected with the previous point. If possible, travel by train, by bus or even by bike and automatically you will travel much more environmentally friendly than by car or plane. And if you book cleverly, you can also travel cheaply.

When traveling in the immediate vicinity, the car is often the cheapest means of transport. But unfortunately, not the most environmentally friendly, as CO2 consumption is around 150 grams per person and kilometer.

For this reason, you can also form carpools for trips. Or use car-sharing offers for local vacations if the place cannot be reached by bus or train.

When travelling further, if possible, don't take a rental car. Instead, use public transport. In this way you will also gain a much more intensive impression of the country and its people and get an insight into everyday life and contact with locals. And the consumption of pollutants is also lower.

Travel with Little Luggage

Whether it's a car or a plane, the heavier bags and suitcases, the more CO2 is generated when going on vacation. With a sustainable vacation, you only pack as much as you really need. It is also more convenient and does not limit you as much during your vacation

Save Water

Make sure that water consumption is low during your holidays, especially in southern countries. Don't shower too long, even on vacation, and use your towels for several days in a row so that they don't have to be washed as often. Many hotels now actively inform their guests about water consumption by washing the towels and only clean them if you leave the towels on the floor.

Organic Hotels and Farms

Organic domiciles are fine examples of sustainability in the tourism sector. Organic hotels, for example, use resources more consciously and sparingly, reduce waste and prefer to serve regional organic cuisine when they eat.

In the vast majority of cases, vegetarian and vegan dishes are also available. The association of organic hotels now has almost 100 hotels in Europe in its program and wants to become climate-positive by 2023. In terms of content they differ and as a common feature they meet various sustainability criteria.

Support the Local Economy

Discover more than what is in the travel guide during your sustainable vacation. Eat-in local restaurants, buy souvenirs in small shops and try regional specialities typical of the country. In this way, you support the local economy and experience foreign cultures up close.

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