Think Volunteer

How To Be a Responsible Traveler?

A traveler or explorer searches for the discovery of information or resources. As the travel industry has expanded, so has the opportunity to positively contribute to the places you visit and make differences that significantly impact the outcome of someone’s life.

The best trip is one in which you can simultaneously feel content and useful. So, how can you make your journey more advantageous? Rather than filling your itinerary with activities curated by a major travel agency, seek out a reputable local agent (NGO). With them, you can actively engage and participate in numerous social things that are beneficial to others.

Many remarkable projects you can obtain from implementing with the organization involve adventure, interacting with nature, and encountering local people. The action has a tremendous social impact on local communities and the lives and livelihoods of people touched by volunteering.

How to leave a positive impact through traveling?

Before deciding to travel and give an impact on others, you must ask yourself about the passion you have and what your movements are to help someone else. Passion is for ensuring you can make a positive impact on the local communities that you travel to. Believe in yourself and that you can leave a positive impact no matter where you go. 

Travel has become increasingly important for people in the 21st century, there is an even greater need to be aware of our impact on local communities. The travel experiences that have a positive impact on the local economy, environment, and communities are the most rewarding. 

With this in mind, people need to take into consideration how their travel decisions can make a positive impact. Traveling with the purpose of learning and doing good will leave you with a fresh outlook and a deeper understanding of the world. Below is a list of 6 ways you can leave a positive impact when traveling.

Seek out local experiences (Visiting local schools) 

All children should have equal educational opportunities and, as an outcome, the opportunity to become whatever they want to be when they grow up. Many of our favorite holiday destinations are in developing countries with limited educational resources, where even the most necessities are either unavailable or scarce.

Volunteering on such trips provides the opportunity to give back and help create a brighter future for these communities. The opportunity to give back is one of the most rewarding aspects of traveling abroad.

If you have the opportunity to visit a local school, you will be able to not only exchange cultural experiences but also make monetary or school-supply donations. Donations support the development of general infrastructure as well as the general upkeep, preservation of the school’s facilities, and the provision of food. 

Participate in eco-activities

Even a small action, like cleaning the beach or reducing plastic waste, can have a significant impact on both people and wildlife. You can also enjoy outdoor activities like stargazing, glamping, and hiking without doing much damage to the environment. 

In the long run, microplastic pollution will harm humans in addition to marine biota. Fish and other aquatic organisms may be adversely affected by microplastics, which can cause oxidative damage, stunted growth, and abnormal behavior. Fish and other marine organisms will eat microplastics that make it into their digestive tracts. 

Additionally, microplastic-eating fish and sea creatures absorb the poison while humans eat fish and other seafood. Humans who consume it are then exposed to the poison. The toxins from these chemicals move up the food chain, eventually reaching humans which can cause severe illness. Therefore, to reduce the environmental impact of beach vacations, travelers can also turn to eco-friendly activities such as reducing plastic waste and helping collect or grab some rubbish floating in the ocean while snorkeling.

Support local business

Change your plans from going out to expensive restaurants and discos to going shopping at local markets. Buy your daily necessities, such as soap, gas online, toothbrushes, or food, at local stores aside from your residence. Tasting the food at the local market will leave you with a lasting impression. 

Homestays, local guides, and shopping at local shops that give back to communities are also outstanding ways to ensure that your money is invested back into the local economy. The funds you spend go to local businesses, assisting them in developing a sustainable future.

Booked homestay at a socially conscious hotel

You can help locals by not only purchasing daily necessities but also by booking a homestay at a small place owned by a local. During your homestay, make it a point to stay at smaller, independent local hotels rather than the fanciest hotel brands. 

This assures that your money stays in the community and gives you access to distinctive cultural experiences. A visit to a homestay located away from the main street is one example. One of the greatest rewards of all is knowing that you can make a positive difference while exploring new places.

Ethical animal tourism

According to National Geographic , popular tourist activities such as elephant rides, swimming with dolphins, and selfies with tigers can cause psychological and physical trauma to the animals. More than 500,000 wild animals, including elephants, sloths, tigers, and dolphins suffer for tourist entertainment. Many tour operators are more concerned with tourists’ money than the welfare of the animal, and as a result, the animal is not treated with the respect it necessitates during the activity. So how can you make a difference to wildlife while traveling? 

You have the capabilities to choose where you spend your money when you travel. By avoiding experiences where you are traveling, there will be less demand for unethical wildlife experiences. There are fewer unethical tour operators and fewer animals to put under stress when there are fewer requests. The most important impact a traveler can make on the wildlife tourism industry is to choose an ethical wildlife experience.

Donating unnecessary stuff 

A donation is a gift made to benefit charity, humanitarian aid, or a cause. A donation can be in the form of money, alms, services, or supplies such as clothing, toys or food. Have you ever purchased flip-flops solely for vacation, a scarf to wear to a place of worship, or even an umbrella in case it rains on an unexpected night? And when the holidays are over, you’re at a loss as to how to lighten your load to avoid costly baggage fees.

Don’t know where to deliver your unnecessary stuff? If you are staying at a homestay run by a local, you can ask the owners if they have any needs, or you can do your research to find local charities. There may be organizations that accept donations and distribute them directly to those in need.

A journey will indeed be much more meaningful when there is something you can give to others. Not solely to satisfy ourselves, but also to do something for the country you visit. Then perhaps even the simplest things you do make a big difference to them. Your trip will undoubtedly be even more demanding! So, are you willing to make a difference? 


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