Updated: May 5, 2021
Have you ever visited a beach and then you found out so many plastics around the seaside? Or have you seen some sea creatures entangled by plastic debris? Now, it's time to change our out-of-date and unsustainable travel style into a new, modern, harmless, and sustainable one! This tourism style can save and protect not only the environment but also for culture and heritage. Moreover, it can give a memorable experience when you are traveling. Therefore, worldwide leaders and activists have some goals to achieve the 2030 deadline. One of their goals is Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). They discuss and cooperate with each other to achieve the SDGs. What does sustainable tourism mean? This is the definition of sustainable tourism, according to these women leaders.
1) Gloria Guevara, President of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC)
Gloria once said, "Sustainable tourism is a way of travel that, while it offers a unique and amazing experience to the traveller and connects people, it also protects our best assets, our nature, our culture, our communities, our history and our planet,"
It means that sustainable tourism is the best way to get a remarkable traveling experience. Meanwhile, you can also meet local people to protect assets, nature, culture, and community. Besides, the travel and tourism industry gives 10.4% to the global GDP based on WTTC. This company already revealed the action plan to create and maintain new sustainable tourism.
2) Paula Vlamings, Chief Impact Officers, Tourism Cares
On the other hand, Paula Vlamings said, "Sustainable tourism is important because the alternative is unsustainable: polluted beaches full of plastic, dead coral reefs with no fish, increasing crime, unwelcoming locals or disappearing cultures and wildlife," said Paula Vlamings. "In order for travel to be transformative, authentic, or even memorable, it must respect the natural resources and work in partnership with communities."
To improve their travel and tourism experience, Tourism Gathers gathers a member-base of nearly 200 leading travel associations and companies.
3) Kelley Louise, Founder and Executive Director, Impact Travel Alliance
"For me, sustainable travel is inherently linked to the best type of travel. It gives us the unique opportunity to connect with destinations on a deeper level through immersive experiences, and travel in a way that enriches our lives as well as the communities we are fortunate enough to visit," said Kelley Louise.
The purpose of Impact Travel Alliance is to give information about how the traveler should spend their money to help locals in the economy sector and protect nature.
4) Aoife McArdle, Director of Business Affairs and Social Impact Experience, Airbnb
"Ensuring local residents are benefitting directly from tourism in their community is an essential part of sustainable travel. Airbnb Experiences was built on this premise — empowering people to share their expertise and passion for their community with visitors and locals alike," said Aoife McArdle.
If you want to blend with locals and learn about their cultures, home-sharing is one alternative you can take. Airbnb gives social experience to travelers and increasing locals' economy.
5) Katie Fallon, AVP Corporate Affairs, Hilton
"The normal course of business at Hilton is to look outside the walls of our hotels to see how we're impacting our communities," said Katie Fallon. "To help lead in a sustainable way over the next century in travel, we launched ambitious goals to cut our environmental footprint in half and double our social impact by 2030."
Hilton has a program named Travel With Purpose by establishing a good business for sustainability. This program made Hilton at the top of the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices.
6) Ana Duek, Founder, Viajar Verde
"The impacts we cause when we travel are much higher than we believe. Considering alternative and more sustainable ways of traveling is not just our responsibility with the environment but also with the destinations and communities we visit," said Ana Duék. "We must reach the moment when sustainable tourism won't be a niche anymore, but mainstream."
Viajar Verde's purpose is to engage travelers and locals in more conscious, ethical, and transformative travels. Viajar Verde is a journalist, and she focuses on sustainable tourism more.