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Future RI Convention:
June 21-25, 2025 - Calgary, Canada. We look forward to seeing you there!

Responsible Travel

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What is Responsible Travel? Please read the article below to learn more about the travel concept and our commitment.

Nepal is a beautiful country with so much to offer to tourists from all over the world. However, it is important to tread lightly to preserve that natural beauty. And practice sustainability at every stage of your adventure.

A Commitment to Care

We are committed to promoting responsible travel in the region and do this in several ways. Firstly, the guides, porters and other team members you will work with are local to the region. It means the money we spend on staffing and hiring employees will go to the communities we visit. Further, you support the local Nepalese economy when you travel to Nepal with us. Finally, we also offset as many of the main carbon emissions created by your trip as possible. So again, we do this in a way that has a community benefit and supports local environmental projects.

Why is Responsible Travel Important?

Many travellers are unfamiliar with the concept of sustainable travel and responsible travel. At its simplest, responsible travel is simply visiting a place and then leaving it as you found it. We love sharing our country with others, and we believe its beauty should not be damaged by tourists who trek and explore its mountainous regions. 

Responsible travel means experiencing a place like a local. For example, eating local foods rather than imported from overseas (often specifically for tourists). And taking your rubbish with you, rather than leaving it out on the mountainside where it could cause a hazard both for the environment and other travellers. It sounds like it could be hard work, but it is easier than you think to travel responsibly during your time in Nepal.

How Can You Help During Your Trip?

The first thing you can do is choose a tour company (such as ours), which is well known for responsible travel. We will do a lot of the hard work for you, such as offsetting your emissions and choosing the best local places to eat and drink, meaning that all you have to do is focus on enjoying your trek and having fun. For many adventurers, sampling the local produce and purchasing local handicrafts and other goods is the highlight of their trip, so this is one of the easiest ways to ensure your travel is sustainable!

Another easy way you can help is to say no to plastic. That means both plastic bags and plastic water bottles. Both of these can be incredibly harmful to the delicate biology of the Himalayan region. We ask that you carry a reusable cotton bag if you plan on shopping. We also recommend that you carry a reusable water bottle or, better still, stop for a drink in one of the local Nepalese tea houses to explore and enjoy the local culture. Finally, don’t forget to recycle! It’s easy, and you don’t have to carry your waste products for your trip.

Here are a Few More Super-Simple Tips

  • Being a responsible traveller isn’t just about the environment. It’s about enriching the lives of the local people you meet too! One of the best ways of doing this is to engage with them. Learn a few simple Nepalese phrases before you arrive. It’s a great icebreaker and a good way to experience Nepal like a local!
  • Avoid anywhere that uses wild animals for entertainment or a photo opportunity. This is against the spirit of responsible travel and is a horrible life for the animals involved. If in doubt, ask your tour guide.
  • Don’t give money or gifts to beggars. Instead, talk to your tour guide if you wish to support the local people, help the homeless, or give gifts to local children.
  • You can support plenty of legitimate charities to ensure your money gets to the right places.
  • Finally, don’t forget to enjoy yourself and smile! A smile is often the most powerful gift you can give.

Read more about Responsible Tourism

Responsible Tourism vs Responsible Travel

Responsible tourism and responsible travel are related concepts that share the same overarching goal of promoting sustainable tourism practices but differ in scope and emphasis.

Responsible tourism is a holistic approach that aims to minimize negative impacts on the environment, culture, and society while maximizing positive benefits. It encompasses many stakeholders, including governments, tour operators, accommodation providers, and tourists. It focuses on creating sustainable tourism destinations and experiences that benefit local communities and visitors.

On the other hand, responsible travel emphasizes the individual traveller’s responsibility to minimize and maximize their negative impact. It involves making conscious choices that reduce environmental impacts, support local communities and economies, and promote cultural understanding and respect.

What is the difference between Responsible Tourism and Sustainable Tourism?

Responsible tourism is a broader concept encompassing the entire tourism industry and creating sustainable destinations and experiences. In contrast, responsible travel is a more individualized approach focusing on the traveller’s responsibility to engage in sustainable tourism practices. Nevertheless, both approaches are important for promoting sustainable tourism and reducing negative environmental, cultural, and societal impacts.

Sustainable and Responsible Tourism is generally used reciprocally, but there are some contrasts between the two concepts.

Sustainable tourism is an approach to tourism that focuses on minimizing tourism’s negative impact on the environment, culture, and society while maximizing the positive benefits. Sustainable tourism focuses on the long-term viability of tourism by ensuring that the natural, cultural, and social resources are used responsibly and sustainably while providing economic benefits to local communities.

On the other hand, responsible tourism is a broader concept encompassing environmental, social, and economic sustainability. Responsible tourism involves taking responsibility for the impacts of tourism and making choices that benefit local communities, protect the environment, and promote cultural understanding and respect. It involves making ethical and sustainable choices throughout the tourism value chain, from planning and development to operation and management.

In summary, sustainable tourism is primarily focused on minimizing the negative environmental impacts of tourism, while responsible tourism has a broader focus on social and economic sustainability. Both approaches are important for ensuring that tourism contributes to the overall well-being of local communities, the environment, and visitors.

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