Being a Better Tourist
“Far and away the best thing the casual tourist can do is to spend money at a local level. Cut out the middleman travel-fixers, cut out the international franchise resort hotels and familiar chain restaurants.
Patronize the mom-and-pop economy. Go slow. Respect people. Practice humility, and don’t condescend with your good intentions. Make friends.
Ask questions. Listen. Know that you are a visitor. Keep promises, even if that just means mailing a photograph a few weeks later. Be a personal ambassador of your home culture, and take your new perspectives home so that you can share them with your neighbors.”
—Professional vagabond Rolf Potts, when asked what a casual tourist can do to become an ethical traveler.
Read the rest of the World Hum interview here for Rolf’s insights on ethical travel. Also, check out his recent blog post on bringing “vagabonding” back home or his “very subjective” IT guide to bookstores.
We’re interested in hearing ways that you try to be a better tourist. Please let us know your tips in the comments below.
Photo: Rolf Potts
- Nat Geo Expeditions