Bored of endless Black Friday emails, ads and pop-ups? Irritated about the UK adopting this Thanksgiving-specific consumer culture from our friends in the US in the first place? We are too. Which is why, this year we are boycotting Black Friday in favour of celebrating Green Friday. This rather wonderful alternative date for the diary is for those wanting to abandon the consumerism, to instead focus on protecting our planet. Here at Original Diving, we are all for this shift in priorities, being champions of the Travel Less, Travel Better philosophy and proud believers that travel can be a force for good. Curious as to how travel can benefit the planet? Well, below are just a few of the ways that we are leading the Green Travel-charge, from supporting community-led projects to carbon-off-setting and making sure that tourism dollars (or pounds sterling) are used in the best possible way. Keep reading to find out more…
If we can learn anything from this pandemic, it'sits that the right kind of tourism is vital for protecting the most special places around the world of our planet. We believe that conservation and tourism are inextricably linked from anti-poaching patrols to funding conservation projects and supporting local economies and people (you can find out more in our blog 'The Conservation Conversation'). Responsible Travel as a whole might have a long way to go, but from working with ethical suppliers and helping you to make informed decisions about exactly where you would like your money to go, we are determined to do our bit for the cause.
Something else we are determined to do? Help our clients travel in a genuinely sustainable way, which is why we off-set 100% of our clients and staffs' carbon footprints from flights and land transport through funding large reforestation projects around the world. But how does this actually work? Simply put, we calculate the amount of CO2 emissions from each trip and work out the number of trees that need to be plantedto planted to absorb the correct amount of CO2.
We firmly believe that tourism and travel should positively affect the destinations and communities that we visit. Our Foundation has invested over £1.3million since it was created in 2009, supporting nearly 100 humanitarian projects in 30 developing countries around the world. These projects focus on vocational training, advocating child protection, assisting economic development, preserving natural and cultural heritage as well as safeguarding the lifestyles of indigenous peoples.
By practicing our concept of Philantourism, which is a combination of philanthropy and tourism, you have the ultimate travel win-win - you can support an amazing destination by simply being there. Philantourism allows you to direct your holiday spending to the places that need it the most, which might be a country wherethere tourism accounts for most of its GDP or it could be a destination that's recovering from a natural disaster. There is nothing you need to do once you have arrived, apart from enjoy yourself (win) and the money that you spend will go intowill into the local economy, including local-run and owned restaurants, hotels and small businesses (double win).
If you haven't heard already, we are big fans of train travel. Not only is it miles better for the environment than flying, but it is also wonderfully romantic - watching the world drift by as you zip between dreamy destinations. You might want to weave a touch of train travel into your trip or have the whole trip based around trains - whatever you'd like we can help with the logistics. From booking compartments on the most luxurious trains, or recommending the most scenic rail routes and filling your itinerary with amazing activities at every stop - we've have got you covered.