Sustainable travel initiatives counter environmentally-damaging tourism
As reported in Cassandra’s macrotrend Next Gen Brand Loyalty, brands must reflect their personal values—be it championing inclusivity or practicing sustainability—in order to gain true loyalty from today’s youth. In this vein, the following brands are taking up arms against irresponsible and damaging tourism practices, tapping into youths’ affinity for environmental consciousness.
Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, recently launched Travalyst (a portmanteau of “travel” and “catalyst”), an initiative that directly addresses the negative effects of travel and overtourism on global climate change, especially in developing countries. At a time when airlines, hotels, and restaurants are increasingly facing criticism for their respective contributions to climate change, Travalyst offers a platform for private companies to connect with NGOs, activists, and governments to collaborate on making tourism more sustainable for the planet while supporting local communities in the process. Already, leading travel companies like Booking.com, TripAdvisor, and Visa have agreed to collaborate with Travalyst and work toward more eco-friendly travel practices.
NATURAL HABITAT ADVENTURES
Natural Habitat Adventures, a 100% carbon neutral travel company, is tackling the lofty goal of leading a zero-waste camping trip in Yellowstone National Park for 14 travelers over seven days. Beyond including classic waste-saving measures like reusable food containers and water bottles on this trip, Natural Habitat Adventures will mitigate food waste by not only composting, but by weighing all food created and recycled on the trip to accurately portion out what is truly needed for future zero-waste trips. With this initiative, Natural Habitat Adventures hopes to create a blueprint for sustainable travel—as well as support a mindset around sustainability—for the whole tourism industry.
The Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) planned and executed a zero-waste tourism trip to raise awareness around ending the use of single-use plastic items when traveling. The promotional tourism agency guided 20 lucky participants around Daegu Modern History Street, Seomun Night Market, Upo Wetland in Changnyeong County, and a treacherous mountain of garbage in Uiseong, North Gyeongsang Province for two days back in June. During the trip, participants used reusable water bottles, multi-use containers, and cloth napkins while making sure to not leave any food on their plates at cafes and restaurants. When all was said and done, this initiative generated less than .5 litres of waste per person, and the KTO plans to run biannual zero-waste trips to promote the future of this type of travel.