The pandemic has made us rethink so many aspects and life choices that we made before COVID-19 struck, be it our lifestyle, our needs, our relationships, environmental sustainability, climate change, and so much more. One such glaring aspect is travel. The pandemic has made us question the way we travel. It has made us question the choices we make as a traveller, and how those choices, if made in a socially conscious approach, can minimise our impact on the environment and make travel more meaningful.
Once the travel and tourism industry rises after the lull, which it will with full power and gusto, the new mantra is going to be – regenerative travel. This new travel buzzword which is rapidly drawing a lot of attention aims at making post-pandemic travel more greener, cleaner, better, less-crowded, and purposeful than ever before.
What is Regenerative Travel?
Regenerative travel is two steps ahead of sustainable tourism. Sustainable tourism is a way of respecting and maintaining a destination’s culture, communities, and environment. It is a way of reducing the strain we put on the destinations we visit. It is about ensuring we don’t harm or add to the damage that a destination has endured as a result of decades of mass tourism.
Sustainable tourism encourages initiatives such as reducing your carbon footprint, using eco-friendly options at hotels and restaurants, preserving heritage sites, supporting local communities, minimising plastic consumption, and so on. When sustainable tourism matures and evolves, it turns into regenerative tourism.
So while a sustainable tourist respects the environment of the destination he or she visits and does not add to the harm or damage, a regenerative tourist not only does the same, but also adds one more crucial step – he or she leaves the place better than it was. The next traveller does the same and so does the next one and this process continues, till the place is completely transformed and retains its original beauty.
Why is Regenerative Travel important?
Fundamentally, regenerative travel is much more than just reducing your carbon footprint or buying everything local – it’s about taking some real, tangible steps that can bring about the change we desire, in order to leave behind a better world for our future generations. It is all about travelling to destinations and improving their condition is some way or the other – to actively contribute and ‘give back’ to the land you are traveling to. This could include initiatives such as tree planting, nature restoration, cleaning a beach, community engagement, eco-friendly stays, resource management, and so on.
Regenerative tourism is important as it embraces a more holistic approach towards reducing our impact on travel, so that even our future generations can get a chance to experience the beauty of our magnificent planet. Most of all, regenerative travel allows travellers to travel with a purpose and soak in great learning experiences. It is a beautiful process of chasing your values while on vacation.
Also Read: Ecotourism - A Responsible Way to Explore the World
As a progressive travel firm, we at Blind Experiences began questioning our role in regenerative travel and how we can contribute towards this revolutionary travel movement. This retrospect led us to become members of the The Long Run (www.thelongrun.org), a membership organisation of nature-based tourism businesses all sharing one common goal – to drive sustainability. We all collectively strive towards a continuous journey of achieving the highest standards of sustainability by staying committed to the 4Cs – Conservation, Community, Culture and Commerce.