To understand what it takes to travel with the heart, you could try some of these things to keep your travel responsible, the next time you travel:
- Be curious about the place you visit – find out more about your host community, how they live, their idea of fun, what they eat…
- Visit places that are not necessarily part of the regular tourist route
- Please use water as efficiently as possible. Do not leave your towels in your hotel room to be washed if they have only been used once. Try to use biodegradable shampoos and soaps.
- Ask if you can refill your drinking water bottle at a safe source rather than buying water in plastic bottles each time.
- Dispose of matches and cigarette butts in the bins provided to avoid starting fires in ecologically sensitive areas.
- Please use electricity as efficiently as possible. Switch off the lights, electric fan, air conditioner and television when you are not in your room.
- Support the local economy – hire local guides, buy locally grown produce, try their snacks, taste the food… go shopping at the nearest haat / weekly market / shandy
- Buy souvenirs directly from community markets and craftspersons so that the money goes directly to local businesses.
- Bargaining for goods may not be appropriate behaviour but if the price is negotiable, pay a price that is fair for the seller and maker.
- Stay in accommodation establishments that have invested in the local community.
- Carry back as much plastic waste as possible and all the batteries you want to discard. It is only our metros that have the systems to handles such waste.
- Learn some of the local language – a simple greeting and a “thank you” in the languages of our people will see you embraced as a guest and not just a visitor.
- Respect the dignity and privacy of TAI Partners – please ask permission before you take a photo.
Do not take natural keepsakes such as shells and indigenous flowers when spending time outdoors.
- Rather than giving money to beggars and street children, make an effort to donate to a local charity that supports community projects. Ask the guest house manager to recommend a reputable charity.
- Take only photographs, leave only footprints.
Would you like to share a tip on this page? Write it in the box below and we will add it on soon.
Shivya from www. theshootingstar.wordpress.com gives us her views in this
blog post: Will your travel memories be someone else's travel
disappointments? Read on.
Know more about responsible tourism from International Centre for Responsible Tourism, Responsible Tourism and EcoClub.
Read about Sustainable Tourism and Eliminating Poverty
Interact and give us your take on responsible tourism through our blog:
www.travelanotherindia.blogspot.com We would love to discuss upcoming issues and current topics with fellow travellers.