LEADERS IN RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL
Elevate Destinations takes pride in its leadership in the field of responsible travel. We take care in selecting local partners that share our environmental and social values, and are avid supporters of locals working in the tourism industry as they are both the most impacted and impactful players at the local-level. All of the ground costs on your Elevate trip are carbon offset using Sustainable Travel International’s Carbon Calculator, and we encourage you to offset your international flights as well.
Please feel free to read more about Elevate’s values & vision, our sustainability commitment, our programs that give back, and more. Our team members are always excited to share more on this topic, so keep an eye out for updates and stories on our Facebook page!
Check out these tips that are an easy, yet impactful way to “elevate” the way we travel:
- Keep an open mind: Try to observe local customs and respect traditional cultures and people.
- Language: Learning a few basic greetings and “thank you” in the local language can get you far and is often a gesture that locals take kindly to.
- Local economy: Support locally owned businesses, restaurants, and other services. Shop from local artisans, craftsmen, and artists to promote traditional crafts and encourage contemporary arts.
- Pay a fair price: Bargaining is acceptable in many places (but not all) and a great way to engage with locals. Try to have fun and not be overly aggressive in bargaining for souvenirs.
- Respect: It is important to acknowledge the privacy and dignity of others and ask before photographing or filming people. Ask permission before entering sacred places, homes or private land, and take heed of local customs (i.e. remove shoes, hats, cover hair with shawl, etc). Feel free to ask your guide if unsure, they are there to support your introduction to the culture!
- Community and environment: Contribute to organizations that support traditional cultures and protect the natural environment. Keep to designated trails and do not disturb plants and animals or their natural habitats.
- Animal products: Avoid purchasing crafts, clothing, furniture or other products that are derived from members of protected or endangered animal species.
- Properly dispose of trash: Avoid using plastic bags and try to minimize the use of other disposables. When traveling in areas away from cities, make sure to take out what you take in. Try using a reusable water bottle and treating your own drinking water when possible – check out what our friends at Travelers Against Plastic are doing!
We acknowledge that to maintain truly sustainable travel products takes ongoing commitment. We continue to monitor our programs on the ground in order to improve them, and welcome your thoughts, feedback, and encouragement!