Experiencing other cultures through travelling is one of the great ways you can enrich your own. However, it is important to be mindful and respectful of the local people you meet during your trip. Across the world, you’ll meet different people with different beliefs, traditions and cultures. Each city or destination you go to will offer you its own unique experience that will leave you enlightened and enriched. Be a responsible tourist this year and interact with the local people who, in most cases, are welcoming and friendly to visitors. Here are a few ways to stay responsible during your trip.
- Do Some Research
Take some time and learn about the traditions, beliefs and customs of those living in the area. This is one of the ways you can show respect for the local people. Do some reading and learn a couple of words and phrases in the local language. It doesn’t matter if you won’t be able to pronounce it correctly. Knowing a few phrases will go a long way in putting a smile on the locals as you start a conversation.
- Avoid Giving Money to Beggars
Cities such as Cape Town have many vagrants and beggars. Although you might be generous and feel the need to help, it is not a good idea to give in to their requests. The best option would be donating to one of the organizations around your destination, especially those that take care of such individuals.
- Be careful when Buying things
Some products being sold in the local markets can either not be healthy or made from endangered animals or plants. It is important to take caution. Don’t just be excited to buy anything because your want to go and show your friends back at home.
- Consider finding out on ‘Voluntourism’
If you are a young traveler going to a developing country, consider doing a research on ‘voluntarism’. This refers to volunteering in a community project while still on your trip. Give some of your time to some of the organizations that serve local communities.
- Use Public Transport
Despite the fact that there are many alternatives when it comes to local transportation, public transport will offer you an opportunity to meet and interact with the locals. Furthermore, it is one way to ease the load on the environment.
- Respect the Environment
Every city around the world is kept clean and it’s important to respect the beauty and biodiversity around. Always find a suitable place to dispose your litter rather than throwing it anyhow.
- Always be Mindful of Animals
Wildlife is a big part of tourism all over the world. While these animals might look timid or friendly on the television they are a real threat in real life. Always pay close attention to given instructions as well as signage about wild animals.
- Contribute to the Local Economy by Supporting Local Artists
Move around the local markets and buy some of the things made by local artists. This is not only a way to remind yourself of the trip but also contributes to the local economy.