Last year, Travel Agent Central published a fascinating article about the future of sustainable traveling. According to a poll they cited, 87% of people want to travel sustainably.
Using eco-friendly travel strategies is a great way to look out for the environment, while also experiencing new sights around the world. The eco-friendly traveler is always aware of ways to help the environment, which can be a challenging task. Below are some ideas to help ensure an eco-friendly trip to the Caribbean.
Choose Eco-Friendly Accommodations
You probably won’t be surprised to hear that sustainable travel centers are becoming more popular. The market for these centers increased 3.9% in 2016.
There are a lot of options when it comes to choosing where to stay in the Caribbean. A lot of people don’t know that some hotels are becoming eco-friendlier in an effort to help the environment. Rentals in the Caribbean are an eco-friendly option for your stay on the islands.
The eco-friendly villas in the Caribbean have all the accommodations that can be found in a traditional house. For example, instead of single-use plastic utensils and plates, the eco-friendly villas are stocked with actual dinnerware. Additionally, these villas are equipped with the latest energy-saving technology in terms of appliances and utilities. TripSavvy shared some tips on choosing the right green hotel. Since meals are included with the villa, access to fresh and local food cuts down on the amount of paper and plastic waste that would come from traditional groceries. These little steps make a big difference when you think about all the guests that stay in each villa each year!
Share a Ride
Instead of renting a car when visiting the Caribbean, challenge yourself to utilize ride-sharing apps or public transportation. This is something that is likely already a part of your daily life if you are visiting the Caribbean from a big city, so why not continue to do this on vacation? If a car is absolutely necessary for your stay, try to get the entire party into one car instead of driving two to the final destination!
According to research from Go Green, eating locally is one of the best ways to help the environment. When choosing a restaurant to eat at, think about where serves fresh and local food. At restaurants that are unique to the area (i.e. not a chain restaurant), there will be less waste because the food is sourced locally and does not have to be transported to the island. Not only is this an eco-friendly decision, but it will also likely result in much better tasting meals because they will have been prepared with fresh, authentic ingredients.
Do Research before Booking Tours
Tours are a common part of most vacations when you are new to the area. While tours are a great way to learn about a foreign place, they do not always use eco-friendly practices. Take a few minutes prior to booking the tour to research the company to make sure that they use eco-friendly practices such as recycling and group transportation prior to booking the trip. In group tours, you’re also more likely to meet new people which is added perk!
Anytime you visit a new place you should look into volunteer opportunities. There are a lot of opportunities to volunteer in the Caribbean that are friendly to the environment. For example, you could volunteer with Habitat Humanity or the Marine Conservation Project. If a formal volunteer excursion does not fit into your itinerary, take a minute to clean up a beach that you are visiting or keep an eye out for any trash that may be in your walking path while you explore the island. This is a small act of kindness that the earth will definitely appreciate!
A lot of people go crazy packing single-use plastics for vacation. These things include disposable toothbrushes, travel size shampoo, conditioner, and body wash, among other things. These single-use items will end up left in the trash at the end of the trip, which isn’t good for the environment! Pack reusable toiletries to help mother earth! Also, bring along a reusable water bottle so you do not have to purchase plastic bottles when you get to your villa!
Overall, there are a lot of ways that you can be an eco-friendly traveler. Some of these ways include searching for eco-friendly accommodations like Caribbean villas as well as including a volunteer excursion in your trip. Other ways to be an eco-friendly traveler include packing reusable items, eating local, looking for eco-friendly tours, and carpooling or ridesharing when possible!
Make Sustainable Travel Your Priority in 2019!
Traveling sustainably is a good way to help the environment. You should follow the tips listed above to do your part to preserve the planet.