7 Steps to Roam Responsibly

When travelling to a new destination, whether it’s in your own backyard or abroad, there are a few steps you can take to ensure you roam responsibly. I created an infographic to give my clients with their travel documents and thought I’d share the information with you too. Below are 7 steps you can take to roam responsibly, no matter where you travel.

Prior to the COVID pandemic, many popular travel destinations suffered from over-tourism and careless tourists. This has worsened especially since the advent of social media and the desire to get “Insta worthy” photos while on vacation. This resulted in over-zealous travellers trampling on fragile habitats or disturbing wildlife just to get a unique photo, or taking photos of indigenous people, including children, without permission first.

While I don’t feel we should stop travelling (in fact, many communities rely on tourist dollars to survive), I do feel we all need to be a little bit more mindful of the damage being done when we travel, albeit often inadvertently.

Many tourism authorities are now encouraging visitors to their countries or regions to travel more sutainablly which includes roaming responsibly. One such country is Iceland. The official Iceland Tourism authority is so keen on protecting Iceland’s pristine landscapes, as well as the safety of all who visit, that they have created a fun interactive website for visitors to take the Icelandic Pledge before they visit.

I belong to a couple of sustainability groups, and as we were recently discussing ways to promote sustainability to our fellow travel advisors and our clients, I was inspired to encourage my own clients to roam responsibly by creating an infographic to include with their travel documents. Remembering that the Visit California website has a section on sustainability, I returned to the website to review their information and discovered they had their own guide on roaming responsibly in the state. The following information and infographic was inspired by the Visit California website, but has been reworded for my own purposes.

In addition to these 7 steps to roam responsibly, an additional step you can take is to offset your carbon footprint. I’ll be addressing this and providing 10 ways you can do so, in my next article.

Below are the 7 steps you can take to roam responsibly.

Will you take the pledge to roam responsibly?

Glacier Bay, Alaska footer image

Step 1.

Educate Myself

Before travelling, I will research the destination, informing myself of the local rules, regulations and customs, and promise to respect and observe them while exploring.

Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon, South East Iceland

Step 2.

Safety First

I will follow the guidance of public health officials, including taking action to reduce health risks to myself and others, which will include not travelling if I’m sick.

Pisac Market, Peru

Step 3.

Roam Responsibly

I will be considerate and responsible wherever and whenever I roam. I promise to always respect the people I meet and the places I visit as well as the wildlife that may inhabit them.

Kata Tjuta, Northern Territory, Australia

Step 4.

Tread Lightly

I promise to preserve and protect the cultural sites and unspoiled outdoor spaces I visit and to especially tread lightly in fragile ecosystems and near wildlife habitats.

Indigenous Fijian dancers at a Music Festival

Step 5.

Support Community

I promise to support local businesses and ensure economic and community growth by purchasing locally made products and eating locally grown food whenever possible.

Roys Peak, Mount Aspiring National Park, South Island, New Zealand

Step 6.

Celebrate Culture

I intend to immerse myself as much as possible in the local cultures and will accept the traditions and practices of the local people and communities.

Callanish Standing Stones, Isle of Lewis, Scotland UK

Step 7.

Influence Others

I will inspire other travellers to follow in my footsteps, encouraging them to show the same consideration and responsibility to protect and preserve the destinations they visit.

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