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Travel Trends: Sustainable Tourism – World Earth Day 2022

AllClear Team
Last updated 22 April 2022

Every year World Earth Day is celebrated on the 22nd of April. The annual event is designed to demonstrate support for environmental protection. This year’s theme is restoration.

As a Travel Insurance company, AllClear always looks for ways to improve our environmental footprint year-round.

For those interested in travel, tourism and the environment, we look back at how the pandemic changed people’s views towards sustainable travel pre-and post-pandemic. In addition, this blog will look at eco-travel trends we expect to see throughout 2022.

How the pandemic changed sustainability

Did you know that due to Covid-19, 2020 saw the most significant annual drop in global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions since World War II?

Unfortunately, the drop in emissions was only temporary. It has been reported that 2022 could set a new record for global emissions. Scientist speculation is dependent on whether oil consumption increases as expected, as travel recovers further, or if it is offset by the reversal of the surge in coal-burning seen in 2021.

What is clear is both people and companies have changed their attitudes toward sustainability, especially in the travel sector.

In October 2020, Microsoft signed a partnership with Alaska Airlines to reduce carbon emissions with flights powered by sustainable aviation fuel on key routes. This is truly a leap forward into a new sustainable era for business travel. In the next few years, commercial travel will soon follow.

In 2021 Google survey revealed that 82% of people said sustainability was more on their minds than before the pandemic.

And now, in 2022, it is evident that sustainability is still on the minds of those that love to travel. In the last 90 days, according to Google Trends, the term ‘Ecotourism’ has increased in search volume by 450+%.

What sustainable changes can travel expect to see in 2022

As travel resumes this year with reduced Covid restrictions worldwide, we can expect to see the following changes:

  • Paperless boarding pass and itinerary solutions
  • Digital Fit to Travel Certificates
  • Shopping in local boutiques and restaurants
  • Refillable toiletries and reusable travel accessories
  • Digital travel corridor will become mainstream with daily status updates.
  • Tips on how to be a more Eco-friendly tourist

No matter where you’re travelling, there are always ways in which you can help to reduce your carbon footprint. It is possible to be more environmentally friendly and still enjoy a holiday.

Here are our top 5 tips

  • Use public transport where possible. Aside from foot, which isn’t a practical or viable way of travelling long-distance – public transport is the most eco-friendly way of travelling.
  • Be a responsible Tourist. when travelling, whether it be abroad or within the UK, a few simple steps to help look after the environment can make all the difference. For example, you should never litter. Additionally, you should stick to footpaths and leave plants and animals where you found them, don’t pick them up or move them.
  • Recycle and Reuse. Avoid disposable cutlery plates and cups where possible. If you do need to use them – recycle them after use. Invest in anything reusable, such as Tupperware and refillable travel containers and bottles.
  • Stay Mindful of Your Energy Use. While on holiday, you may not be paying the bills the same way as you do at home, but you should still stay mindful of your energy use while away. So, switch off those lights and only use the air conditioning while you’re in the room.
  • Consider Which Operators You Use. Some tour operators invest heavily back into the environment. This is an excellent way for you to enjoy the activities you have planned and help reduce any long term adverse effects.

Author notes

Written by Lydia Crispin, MA Content Creator at AllClear

Edited by Letitia Smith, M.Sc. Content Manager at AllClear

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