Tripping On Ethics

Last Travel Trip Tuesday drew out some feisty albeit informed comments on ALOR. One, in particular, made me question my ethics as a travel writer. A travel writer’s dilemma if you will.

Am I crushing the world I aspire to see under my giant carbon footprint?

“I also often wonder how average travel bloggers justify their bragging lists from the environmental point of view. I see, on front pages of blogs, statement like “28 countries, 4 continents in 1 year”. What about the carbon pollution caused by all your cheap flights from one continent to the other?” — Juergen, Dare2Go

Ouch right! Am I the “average travel blogger” in question? Is writing about cheap flights a horrible idea?

Travel Trip Tuesday Post Triggering Comments
Travel Trip Tuesday Post Triggering Comments

Travel Tip Tuesday

To be fair, Juergen made good points. Carbon footprint and sustainable travel are topics not covered on ALOR. Should they be?

Suddenly, I found myself questioning future posts on finding affordable airfare.

Then, I thought of two things that enabled me to one, sleep and two, write next week’s Travel Tip Tuesday.

First, it’s not always about me. There’s a pretty decent chance Juergen’s comment was a collection of observations. I merely provided an article and an opportunity to voice an opinion.

Note to self, stop being too sensitive.

Second and more importantly, the majority of ALOR readers live in America.

Finding Cheap Airfare to Europe

Since Google auto-fills “Finding Cheap Airfare” with “Finding Cheap Airfare to Europe” it’s safe to say, Americans are actively looking for affordable airfare to Europe. Trouble is, it’s hard to find.

Most American families, like the one I grew up in, save for one really great vacation a year. High airfares often mean, those trips are somewhere between our two coasts, Mexico and Canada.

So although Juergen’s comments gave me pause, I have decided to still share tips on finding cheap airfare to Europe next week.

As a travel writer, I believe travel is the best way to open minds and hearts to cultural differences. If the gateway to an open mind starts with Europe, then let’s go there.

Sustainable Travel

Sustainable travel is not likely to be a focus on ALOR. The majority of ALOR readers are dreaming about traveling a lot more frequently than they get to do it.

However, thanks to Juergen from Dare2Go sustainable travel will at least be a concept this frequent traveler will be more mindful of. I’ve started my research and already learned a great deal.

Fellow travel writers, your comments, advice, and posts are welcome here. If you have written about sustainable travel, please comment in the section below with a link to your post or send us an email at TheArtofLivingOntheRoad@gmail.com.

Travel Tip Tuesday

As travelers in constant motion, we’ve learned to pack light, be prepared and on occasion MacGyver through things.

Travel Tip Tuesday is our way of sharing tricks we learned along the way, as quick tips.

Travel safe, fill your eyes and share your stories.

7 thoughts on “Tripping On Ethics

  1. I love your writing these points:
    First, it’s not always about me. There’s a pretty decent chance Juergen’s comment was a collection of observations. I merely provided an article and an opportunity to voice an opinion.

    Note to self, stop being too sensitive.

    I think all writers feel this. And the carbon footprint…oh I think about that so much too. I think the hope is, whether you travel or live almost a completely carbon neutral life, the idea is to live with intent and spread that outward. I think we all feel compelled to follow certain callings, and if we don’t, there can never be inner peace. But whatever our calling is, if we can do it in the most thoughtful way possible and share what we are learning, I think then we can all still benefit from each other.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tiffany these words are an example of why I value our connection so much. You have a wonderful ability to be kind and encouraging in the same moment. Recognizing our paths can be different and true at the same time. I look forward to seeing how your travels continue to unfold and am wishing you a peaceful connection back in the US after seeing so much of the world recently. You have seen so much by foot, thank you for sharing your inspiring love of hiking.

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  2. I completely agree with the original comment that spawned this post…flying isn’t exactly eco friendly. Someone said something similar to me once before. But I think what’s equally important is what we travelers do when we arrive at a location. For instance, walking versus driving, eating sustainably sourced food and not throwing a lot of it away, not wasting heat/air conditioning/water in hotel rooms, and even just respecting the landscape and not littering and walking where we shouldn’t, etc. So while it’s true that the carbon footprint of flying is large, there’s really no way to explore the world without making that footprint. Instead, maybe the focus should be on making all other aspects of travel sustainable and eco friendly. Just my 2 cents…

    I’m glad you wrote this post because as you said, raising awareness is a good place to start.

    Diana

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    1. Hi Diana, thank you for taking a second to share your insight. Your comments about walking and not walking where you shouldn’t resonate with me. Littering too. Our national parks are so well kept by the rangers to see fast food containers in places too dangerous to clean is infuriating. Imagine the world today id this sustainability topic extended to everyday life. As a kid, I had a particular few years where “things” began to get to me. Driving by new car lots, I thought “yeah but where do all these cars go later?” Bic pens, razors it’s all plastic crap. Where is that going to go? My Father managed a recycling plant and perhaps that triggered the thoughts. I was young. So while I have lived a decent life from an eco standpoint early on, air-travel is a topic I had not dug into. Connecting all of these efforts to travel as you mention is important. Especially when visiting home, parks and sacred lands around the world. Side note: your favorite park walks is a beautiful reminder of the beauty we can see by land and foot in North America.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. These are really important things for us to think about when traveling. The carbon footprint is not insignificant. Thanks for providing those links. I came from the same kind of family who took/takes one large trip per year, and I think most people take small, frequent trips and don’t make transatlantic flights more than a few times in ten years. Although, with prices coming down, especially with hotspots like Iceland (no pun intended) being so cheap and accessible, more people are expanding their horizons. I would certainly encourage those who are able to add the carbon offset credits to their flight, especially if an employer would pay for it (frequently traveling for business) or if it can be written off by a self-employed person. It won’t fix the whole problem but it can make a small difference.

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    1. Hi Staci! Always a pleasure to hear your input. Agree completely. To be honest, I’m actually surprised with all my corporate travel, this never came up in company conversations. I’ve worked for companies with private jets and flown a lot of commercial airlines and still, not till I started writing about traveling did I even know anything about sustainable travel. It’s one of those no duh moments, but sometimes, we need words around a problem. We won’t fix the problem but awareness is the first step to making any changes in the right direction on a personal travel level.

      Liked by 1 person

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