Responsible Tourism Blog Series 2/3: Choosing local
Tourism is the 4th largest industry in the global economy and contributes to the prosperity of many countries.
While we may not think of the financial impact tourism can have, in developing countries income from the tourism industry can be the main economic driver for many communities. Tourism creates more jobs in different sectors such as hospitality, retail and tour guiding and increases services and infrastructure such as water, sanitation, telecommunications and transport that many smaller, poorer communities may not have otherwise had.
Hosting foreign and domestic visitors can offer communities and travellers alike the opportunity to share their cultures and learn from one another. When travelling and opening yourself up to the world, not only do you learn so much about the world around you and the different cultures, customs and cuisines, you also learn about yourself as well!
Every country and culture has their own style of clothing, food, art and music and exploring this variety is one of the most exciting things about travelling. Choosing to purchase locally made items from the crafter themself usually comes with a great story about how the maker got into their craft and adds deeper insight into their way of life. Staying at local hotels or homestays, is another personal way to truly connect with the local community and learn more about their history and culture, whilst also supporting them financially.
Travelling and interacting with the local community is the perfect way to immerse yourself in the culture and experience what it is really like to live in a different country. Instead of using large travel agencies and popular hotel chains, choose to shop and stay locally, allowing you to give back to the community that has shared so much with you. Choosing to travel this way helps to prevent money leaking out of the local economy and going to large global corporations.
Seven Women are proud to partner with a range of local social enterprises in Nepal that employ local staff and work towards solving local problems. You can learn more about the places we visit by clicking below.