It might not come as a shock to you that the total number of international tourist arrivals has grown 7% from 2016-2017. In numbers this means that 1,326 million people arrived at a tourist destination. The increased income and number of the world’s population along with cheaper flights all play a part in the tourist boost which we are now facing.
But why is it an global problem that more people than ever are travelling around the world? Well, on the positive site you might conclude from the increasing tourist numbers that people are willing to spend more money on travels. This helps small communities to earn money and create a better standard of living. But you could also conclude that the increasing number of tourists put a big pressure on the local environments. We have seen examples from overpopulated tourist areas where environmental and sustainable thinking are lacking behind.
And how to fix it? There are a lot of ways to help tourist destinations become less affected by the increasing number of people visiting. Some of the solutions, like passing a bill about how to maintain a sustainable environment, might take a long time to implement, because it is depending on governments, businesses, time and money to make it all happen. Other solutions, like the ones mentioned below, could easily be implemented and provide insights into the tourists’ doings. If hotels around the world were focusing more on how to leave a better environment by getting to know their guests’ habits, they could help guests make better decisions all for the benefit of the environment, and even without knowing. And how is that possible, you might ask?
Well, the solution is called nudging. It is all about helping people to choose what is best for them and their surroundings and leading them in the right direction without having them sacrificing anything. For example, by helping hotel guests use less water by gently informing them about the value of every single water drop, and show them how little it takes to make a difference, even by turning off the water during toothbrushing or soaping.
It might seem simple – and it is!