Earth Day 2021 will be a moment of reflection for travelers around the world.
Instead of reminiscing about the trips they have taken in the past 12 months, it will be a milestone moment for many to reflect on how their future travels can have a more positive impact, both on the environment and on local communities.
We have leveraged our recent research to unearth an uplifting trend of a heightened desire to travel responsibly, which means we can expect to see travelers having a more eco-conscious mindset throughout 2021, and beyond, as it becomes safe to travel again.
Following the halt that the pandemic has put on travelers’ plans, people’s eyes to their own impact on the environment and local communities have no doubt been opened. Over half of global travelers (53%) admitted that because of Coronavirus they want to travel more sustainably, with travelers in Colombia (74%), Brazil (71%) and India (70%) being especially committed to this.
But travelers aren’t just carefully considering their destination choices, they are also thinking about how their trips can have a more long-term, regenerative effect and actually help rebuild communities. With new research from Booking.com revealing that over two-thirds (68%) of travelers want the money they spend when traveling to go back to the local community. Along with a further 43% of travelers intending to support local communities and economies through more thoughtful travel choices.
This eco-conscious determination is having an impact on travelers’ behaviors even once they arrive at their destination, as global travelers are pledging to continue to act with sustainability in mind. Booking.com’s research shows that 81% of global travelers are vying to stay in an eco-accommodation at least once. This number increases to 100% for travelers from Vietnam, 98% for travelers from Colombia and 98% for Indian travelers. Meanwhile, 84% will be on a quest to reduce their waste and recycle plastic when visiting a destination, a number that increases for travelers from Thailand (94%), Croatia (91%), Brazil (91%) and Argentina (90%).
Whilst it’s likely that travelers can finally get excited about being able to travel safely again in the not so distant future, research shows the pause in globetrotting has inspired 83% of travelers to make sustainable travel a priority in the future. An optimistic indication that travelers will be more considerate when making decisions about future travel, while keeping in mind that every (sustainable) step they take will help to reduce their footprint on the environment. No matter how small it may be…