Responsible Travel

By no means is this guide the end all be all, but it is simply Tripp’s humble
opinion on a few practices that modern day explorers should observe and be
considerate of as they traverse the globe.
Be Considerate – We must always remember that we are a guests in someone
else’s country. Always treat people with respect, for example if you want to take
someone’s picture, ask for their permission first. The best way to show respect for
a culture is to learn the local customs so you can be sure that you are acting and
dressing respectfully. Besides, asking someone questions about their culture is a
great way to get to making friends in a new place.
Giving – Be careful not to give money blindly to those that are specifically
targeting tourists. This can be a problem as it encourages this type of behavior
and can create a dependency on begging. Instead, spend your money locally in
shops and restaurants (more on this below).
Energy Usage – Do your best to consume water and energy only as needed. As
you travel, you will see these resources are already scare around the world, and it
just makes sense to use only what you need.
Souvenirs/Gifts – If you really want to help a local economy, take the time to
learn about products being sold, and try to purchase souvenirs that are locally
made and sustainable.
Illegal Activities – Think first before getting involved with drugs, prostitution, and
other illegal activities. These are all industries that lead to violence and misery for
the suppliers and can at times can end sadly for the buyer as well. Be smart and
just DO NOT get involved.
Support – Spend your money supporting local businesses. Buy domestic
products if applicable, stay at local hostels/guesthouses over foreign owned
accommodations.
Kindness – Be kind to people, the environment, and wildlife. Do not pollute or
leave trash behind. Leave no trace.
Attitude – Maintain a positive attitude and a sense of humor as you travel. Things
will go wrong and you may get irritated, but take a step back remain calm, and if
possible, laugh it off.
It may be overstated, and even I am guilty of this, but in the West we take too
many luxuries for granted and are shielded destitute poverty, poor sanitation,
and lack of basic resources. Seeing this first hand is a very different experience
from reading about it or being well informed on global issues. As a traveller your
first feeling might be guilt. While there are individuals that feel tourists and
travelers are exploiting other countries to get a cheaper trip. First, let’s point
out that tourism and traveller’s are not responsible for the inequalities of other
countries and the world. In most cases, by spending your money wisely and
making responsible decisions your are helping to relieve poverty. Tourism is the
worlds largest industry and many people, families, businesses, and countries
make their living and depend on tourism. Further more, the benefits for the host
and the traveler are clear: cross cultuarl interaction, widening perspective, open
mind, etc… A traveler returns home with a better understanding of his place and
impact on the world.
These beliefs are the sole opinion of Tripp the Turtle and he truely beleives that
traveling (responsible travel that is) is the key to future generations, etc….

 

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