After the Tsunami
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Date: 09 February, 2005
Phang Nga Bay sea kayaking trips, Thailand
'...your money will ‘trickle down’ into the hands of those who need it most – local people.'
Why travellers should visit Tsunami affected regions in 2005.
The Tsunami affected regions are notable for three reasons. Firstly, they are some of the world’s most stunning and fragile natural environments, inhabited by wonderfully friendly and hospitable people. Secondly, they are some of the poorest areas of the world. Finally, they are highly dependent on tourism for jobs, incomes and livelihoods.
Some tourist areas have been destroyed, while others (particularly inland) remain intact. While currently dealing with the tragic affects of events, in the coming weeks and months local people will begin to rebuild their lives. This will become an even harder task if tourism declines and local people lose their jobs and incomes.
Our thoughts go out to all those affected by this terrible natural disaster. While it may seem premature to us to be talking about holidaymaking in the affected regions, many local people are increasingly concerned that we do.
After speaking with our local operator in Sri Lanka two of our clients departed on the 28 December, one of the reasons they gave was they wanted to support the local tourism industry and economy. Our Sri Lankan operator said ‘we are in desperate need of support, they are a wonderful couple and we are going to give them a fabulous holiday’.
So we would urge any of you who have already booked your holiday in the affected countries not to automatically cancel your plans. Where you were planning to go may not be affected, so look into it carefully. And if you are making your holiday plans then put these countries at the top of your list – they need you and you will receive the warmest of welcomes.
As always, and particularly at this time, wherever you plan to visit on holiday this year, we would encourage people to travel responsibly and sensitively. This will increase the benefits to local people, and bring you closer to local culture and nature.
By staying in locally owned accommodation, rather than overseas owned resorts, using local guides, visiting local restaurants, more of your money will ‘trickle down’ into the hands of those who need it most – local people. Before you leave, buy your gifts for people back home directly from local craft sellers.
All the operators on responsibletravel.com have policies and operate in a way that automatically ensures you will be doing just this, if you travel with them. So check out responsibletravel.com for amazing holidays in Indian Ocean countries and anywhere else in the world, help local people and have a more authentic, inspiring holiday.
Many more responsible holidays of all types are operating across these countries - Thailand and Sri Lanka.
A few responsible Indian Ocean holiday ideas.
These holidays are operating, and designed to provide real benefits to local communities.
Please consider them for 2005.
For more great suggestions
with holidays from leading responsible operators log on to www.responsibletravel.com