from The International Ecotourism Society (November 2011)
1. Fly Wisely:
Air travel is often the most energy consuming aspect of your travel. Plan your trip so that you minimize air travel, and choose, whenever possible, to stay longer in a destination instead of making many short trips.
2. Travel Light:
Pack only what you need, and don't bring things that will become waste. By reducing the weight of luggage travelers can significantly cut green house gas emissions.
3. Book Responsibly:
When choosing your hotel, tour operator, or other service providers, select ones that have good sustainability practices. Look for information on the company's environmental initiatives; strategies, save energy and minimize waste; involvement in sustainable tourism certification program. A good place to start your search is Ecotourism Explorer.
4. Unplug Before You Leave:
Turn off lights and unplug household appliances that can be left unplugged while you are away.
5. Unplug While You Are There:
Turn off all the lights and air conditioner/heater when you leave your room, and unplug unnecessary appliances.
6. Choose Greener Ways to Get Around:
Utilize public transportation (bus, train, city car, etc.) and alternative modes of transportation (walking, bicycle, non-motorized vehicles, horse, camel) as much as possible. It's a more sustainable way to get around, and also a healthier and more enjoyable way to get to know the place you are visiting.
7. Eat Local:
Reduce your 'food miles' by choosing local. Visit a local farmer's market, shop at a locally owned grocery store and choose locally owned restaurants that buy local. Locally produced foods are a tastier and more sustainable option.
8. Save Water:
Use the minimum amount of water needed for a shower/bath, don't let water run while shaving, brushing or washing, and check if the hotel has a linen reuse program - if so, reuse your towels and bed sheets by placing the card to indicate you don't wish to have them washed every day; if not, request hospitality staff not to change them every day.
9. Charge Your Trip Sustainably:
Whenever possible, utilize options that do not require batteries. Buy rechargeable batteries for your essential travel items such as cameras, razors, and flash lights.
10. Offset the Unavoidable Footprint:
Contribute to a credible carbon offsetting program to support conservation, renewable energy, and other energy saving projects.
The International Ecotourism Society (TIES) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting ecotourism.
Founded in 1990, TIES has been in the forefront of the development of
ecotourism, providing guidelines and standards, training, technical
assistance, research and publications. TIES' global network of
ecotourism professionals and travelers is leading the efforts to make
tourism a viable tool for conservation, protection of bio-cultural
diversity, and sustainable community development.
To learn more about TIES, visit their site.