Make Holidays Greener, a summer campaign run by ABTA in partnership with Travelife for Hotels and Accommodations, has ended its summer season with beach cleaning activity and introducing 15 pledges to help holidaymakers be more sustainable on holiday.
The pledges covered all aspects of a holiday from taking care of the local environment to supporting local communities and included simple actions like eating local food and saying no to plastic. There was also the option to design your own pledge.
In total, over 840 holidaymakers made pledges. Eating and drinking at local restaurants was the most popular pledge (213 holidaymakers), switch off electricity (79); reduce, reuse and recycle on holiday (79); and learn the local language and talk to the locals (72).
The campaign was also supported by a travel blogger, The Travel Hack, who pledged to ‘say no to plastic’ saying that she would take a collapsible water bottle on holiday instead. Over 2,500 people are estimated to be involved in 79 beach clean activities taking place this year. So far 4,660kg of rubbish has been collected across 17 countries worldwide.
ABTA member, Noble Caledonia ctook part in a clean-up aboard MS Hebridean Sky in Norway and two Travelife Gold Hotels, one in Zanzibar and one in Greece, managed to collect 350kg of rubbish each. Barrhead Travel committed to a plastic free day in their office, TUI Group will have completed 49 beach cleans by the end of September and Thomas Cook Mexico organised a turtle conservation project.
Nikki White, director of destinations & sustainability at ABTA said: “Make Holidays Greener 2017 has raised awareness of the various ways we can help through the 15 pledges which also included buying local souvenirs, protecting local children and saving water.”
Travel blogger, The Travel Hack, said: “It doesn’t take long before it becomes an ingrained habit – such as always carrying a bottle of water rather than buying a new plastic bottle whenever you’re out – and if everyone did that it would have such a huge impact.”