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January 31, 2022updated 25 Apr 2022 12:58pm

Nature tourism: the eco-friendly way to travel

According to GlobalData’s Q3 2021 Consumer Survey in 2021, 19% of travelers said they typically traveled on an eco-holiday.

By Globaldata Travel and Tourism

Travelers are moving towards more environmentally conscious travel, with many travel companies offering ‘green’ options for holidays. The growing awareness amongst consumers regarding their carbon footprint is changing attitudes and behaviors, resulting in a growing demand for eco-holidays.

Eco travel has grown in recent years

Eco tourism has seen significant growth in recent years. According to GlobalData’s Q3 2021 Consumer Survey in 2021, 19% of travelers said they typically traveled on an eco-holiday. This was a 4% increase on a Q3 2019 Tourism Consumer Survey, indicating that tourist attitudes are changing towards more environmentally friendly and sustainable holidays.

The development of ecotourism is partly due to the progression of numerous ‘nature positive’ tourism initiatives in recent years, attempting not only to reduce carbon emissions caused by tourist activity, but to remove it entirely. Ethical tour operators such as Responsible Travel are offering increasingly environmentally conscious travel options that meet the rising demand for sustainable holidays.

New initiatives are driving change

Responsible Travel’s new goal is to make every trip “nature positive” by 2030. Just as being “climate positive” goes a step further than being carbon neutral. This travel ethos aims to leave the environments travelers visit not just in the same state that they found them, but better off. With the increase in focus on eco-tourism the desire to be outside in nature following restrictions due to COVID-19 will show a positive change for the environment and wildlife.

Intrepid Travel is committed to remaining an industry leader in responsible business and advocates for a range of important issues from climate change to human rights and to animal welfare. In 2020 it declared a climate emergency as part of Tourism Declares. It believes its impact is stronger in numbers, and it works with a range of global partners to develop initiatives aimed at helping people and the planet to thrive.

Consumer sentiment is improving

According to GlobalData’s COVID-19 recovery survey (fieldwork undertaken December 2-6 2020), 37% of responses said that a reduced environmental footprint is important as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, and a further 47% hold it more important in some way than they did before the pandemic. This shows a positive shift in consumer sentiment and demonstrates that as more people care about the effect they have on the environment at an individual level, the future of eco-tourism is a positive one.

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