We are all about responsible travel and giving back to our communities at SANDEMANs. If you have ever been on a SANDEMANs tour, you will know that is isn’t just about ticking things off a list of main attractions; the guides that work with us put a lot of research into making sure that they pack in the best stories from history and share the local culture with you.
So if you love the city you are visiting as much as we do, here are a few tips on how to travel well and even do some good on your holiday.
1. Reduce your personal waste
This is the first step we can all take to be better travellers. Pack your own reusable water bottle (if you are tight on luggage space look for silicone bottles that roll up) and bring a reusable shopping bag to put your shopping in. A few other easy tips are to visit fresh markets that don’t use so much packaging and dine at places known for using local produce.
2. Use public transport
As the largest walking tour company in the world, we are big advocates of seeing a city by foot. However, whenever stops on our route are a bit too far to walk to we will use the public transport services. Most cities have excellent public transport systems to get you around the city and even an app that will help plan the best route for your journey. Reduce individual car use and experience a city like a local! If you are planning to visit any of our 20-city network, why not put on some comfortable shoes and enjoy a FREE Tour with us?
3. Look up recycling methods in the city you are visiting
Each city will have their own way of sorting and disposing of waste. Either do a quick search online to figure out how to recycle plastics and paper or simply ask a local – this could be your hostel or hotel reception team, the host of your apartment or even a guide that works with SANDEMANs! If you struggle to find a proper recycling bin then consider taking it home with you and recycle it properly there.
4. Sign up for a local community event
A great way to really experience a city is to volunteer and get involved with local projects. Most events will allow you to meet locals and also understand the challenges they face. Back in 2016, we ran our very first litter picking event in Edinburgh to give back to the community. We saw 40 participants – both local and visitors alike – come out and collect rubbish for an hour along the Royal Mile. Since then we have done similar events in Dublin, Berlin and Paris. If you are interested in seeing what community events are happening in our cities check out our website here. Our next one will be a clean up cruise with our local Amsterdam boat rental partners Starboard Boats along the canals of Amsterdam on 29 April. We hope to see you there!
5. Grab an empty bin bag and get social
If you can’t make an organised event then grab a rubbish bag and make a difference on your own! All you have to do it pick up litter you see around it and properly dispose of it. Check out the hashtag #trashtag on Instagram for the viral movement that is calling for people to do their part – even if it is just one bag. A great account we love to follow is also the Adventure Bag Crew.