10 Top Tips for an Eco-Friendly Caribbean Vacation to reduce your Footprint
Have you always dreamt of an eco-friendly Caribbean vacation, but you’re not sure how to do it in an eco-friendly way? In this blog post, we’ll give you our 10 best eco-friendly travel tips, so your conscience can rest easy while you soak up the charms of island life with your feet in the turquoise Caribbean Sea…
1. Leave your house on low vibrations
Before you lock the door to your house and jump in the car to the airport, make sure that you’ve turned all of your electronic appliances off at the mains so that they are not consuming energy on standby mode. If it’s winter, you can turn your thermostat down to 70oC which will prevent any risk of pipes freezing, and if it’s summer, be sure to turn your A/C system off. Don’t forget to cancel your newspaper subscriptions too or there’ll be a pile waiting for you to recycle when you get back! Now you are ready to go on your eco-friendly Caribbean vacation.
2. Take an eco-friendly tour
Scrap those gas-guzzling 4×4 adventures that tear through the hillside, leaving scars on the natural landscape. Instead, why not find a tour that gives you a unique experience at a slower pace, or one that can exhilarate you with the force of nature! Eco-friendly tours allow you to enjoy what’s best about the Caribbean, without leaving your mark on it.
3. Stay in eco-friendly accommodation
There are lots of accommodation options that promise luxury for their guests, but what impact do they have on the local environment that is so vital to their success? When you’re choosing which resort you want to stay in, look out for third party verifications of good environmental practices, such as TripAdvisor GreenLeaders and Green Globe, or look for details on the resort’s websites about the practices that they undertake to reduce their environmental impacts. Be careful of resorts that call themselves “eco”, but have nothing to show you to back up that claim. ALLinVillas.com for example, only promotes sustainable and eco-friendly Caribbean vacation accommodations.
4. Be a respectful guest
Being on vacation doesn’t mean you have to take a break from the good eco-practices you do at home! In fact, when you’re in an exotic paradise like the Caribbean, it can be even more important to treat resources with respect. Water is a valuable and scarce resource in the Caribbean, so make sure to take part in towel and bed linen reuse programs and have quick showers rather than baths. Many of the Caribbean islands also have to work hard and pay a lot to meet their energy needs, so be mindful of your energy consumption and don’t leave the lights or A/C on when you leave your room. These are simply tips how to make your very own eco-friendly Caribbean vacation.
5. Choose eco-friendly transport
If you want to see the real side of the Caribbean, what better way than to jump on a local bus! Not only will you get a far more fun and exciting ‘local’ experience than hiring a car, you’ll also be reducing the carbon footprint of your vacation.
Or if you prefer to travel under your own steam, why not hire some bikes so that you can explore the island at an even slower pace and soak it all in. Bikes are great because you’re completely free to travel on your own agenda, and you might even be able to enjoy a rum punch or two along the way…
6. Visit the local market
For a truly authentic cultural and culinary experience, find out where the nearest local food market is, and go and soak up the atmosphere! Buying food from the local markets stimulates the small-holding farming economy and the food that you buy will have virtually zero food miles. Plus you’re guaranteed to have a huge smile on your face after you’ve sunk your teeth into a fresh local mango! Farm to table is always a good sign for an eco-friendly Caribbean vacation.
7. Volunteer for a day
When you get to your resort, ask your local guide about volunteering opportunities that you can get involved in for a day of your stay. You might be able to go into a local school and talk to them about life where you come from, or about your job. There might even be a community project that you can contribute to. You’ll find the experience richly rewarding, you’re sure to meet some fascinating, like minded people, and you’ll be giving a little back to the community too. A win-win-win!
8. Stay on the marked trails
When you’re out exploring the local countryside, be careful to stick to marked trails and don’t pick the wild flowers, no matter how beautiful they are! This will ensure that the wildlife that you’re enjoying will be equally wonderful and pristine for years to come. Maybe even for your return trip!
9. Ask your accommodation what they recycle
Putting a little bit of consumer pressure on your all-inclusive resort can have an incredible effect. Even more so if enough of us do it! If there’s a customer survey, be sure to say that you value accommodations that responsibly manage their waste, and if you get a chance to speak to one of the management team during your stay, ask them what they’re doing to reduce their impacts on the environment. Showing them that you care and that it’s an important consideration for you when you choose accommodation will encourage them to make positive changes.
10. Don’t leave it like you found it – leave it even better!
When you’re out on activities and tours, take your waste back to the resort with you if there aren’t local recycling options available. And if you can, why not pick up noticeable trash that you walk past? By supporting local efforts to protect their local environment, you’ll leave your vacation knowing that you’ve done your little bit to make it a better place than when you arrived.
We hope you’ve picked up some useful ideas! If you want to have an incredible eco-friendly vacation in the Caribbean then contact ALLinVillas to book your favourite vacation today.
If you have any other eco-friendly travel ideas, please share them with us.