Become an animal-friendly traveller
Thousands of animals, both wild and domesticated, suffer as a result of the tourism industry – either they are used to entertain us, carry us or our belongings around, or exist within the communities we are visiting.
It’s up to us to be responsible travellers and ensure that while we enjoy our holidays we do not negatively impact the animals around us, or fuel cruel industries or trades that cause thousands of animals to suffer or die.
Just follow our 12 simple tips to become an animal-friendly traveller and be a positive force for animals worldwide.
You can download a copy of our guide here
Or read our top 12 tips here
- Tip #1: Photos. Photograph wildlife in the wild, while respecting their space.
- Tip #2: Eco-tourism. Enjoy animals in the wild where they belong and support companies that offer eco-tourism trips or non-invasive photo safaris.
- Tip #3: Look but don’t touch. Wild animals aren’t pets looking for belly scratches. Close contact with wild animals could cause harm to their environment, to the animal themselves or even pose a risk to your safety.
- Tip #4: Feeding wild animals. This can harm their ability to find food naturally and teaches them to get dangerously close to humans.
- Tip #5: True Sanctuaries. Sometimes you’ll see animals in “sanctuaries” or poor-quality zoos. If you are worried about the welfare of these animals, report it immediately to your tour operator.
- Tip #6: Riding elephants. Elephants are wild animals and can’t be “tamed” without cruel treatment. Don’t try to ride them or visit businesses that offer this activity.
- Tip #7: Animal products or trinkets. Do not buy items made from animal parts. Buying these products encourages animal exploitation and poaching of animals from the wild.
- Tip #8: Animals in entertainment. Please don’t support cruel animal exhibits or shows like circuses, performances with marine mammals or any kind of show that involves wild animal performances.
- Tip #9: Working animals. Working mules and horses are commonplace in some countries. If you are worried about their welfare, please report it immediately to your tour operator.
- Tip #10: Health and safety. Many strays and wild animals are fearful of humans and if approached, handled or attacked, can pose a real threat to you and your health. If bitten, wash the wound with soap and water, and seek medical attention immediately.
- Tip #11: Animal meat. Avoid eating at places, including street vendors, that sell dog or cat meat, bush meat, and endangered species, such as shark fins, whale and turtle meat. Zoonoses can also travel through eating infected meat.
- Tip #12: Eating out. Many countries and cities worldwide are providing more options for vegetarian and vegan travellers, so look out for specialised establishments or learn words like ‘vegetarian’ or ‘vegan’ in the local language.
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