To mark Earth Day on April 22, a new survey of Canadians finds that nearly half of them want to be more ecological travellers, but say they face many obstacles to reach that goal.
Online travel agent Booking.com surveyed 18,077 people in 18 countries early in 2019 who have taken a trip in the last year or plan to travel in the next year, including more than 1,000 respondents in Canada.
The survey found that 48 per cent of Canadian travellers believe that people need to make sustainable travel choices to save the planet for future generations.
The same survey found that 70 per cent of Canadian travellers intend to stay at least once in an eco-friendly or green accommodation in the year ahead. In the four years that Booking.com has been conducting this research, it has seen this figure trend up from 62 per cent in 2016 to 65 per cent in 2017 and 68 per cent in 2018.
In addition, 66 per cent of Canadian travellers say they would be more likely to book an accommodation knowing it was eco-friendly, whether they were looking for a sustainable stay or not.
The problem, 82 per cent of Canadian travellers say, is that they are not aware of the existence of eco-labels for vacation accommodations, while well over a third (38 per cent) have confirmed that an international standard for identifying eco-friendly accommodation would help encourage them to travel more sustainably and 56 per cent would feel better about staying in an accommodation if they knew it had an eco-label.
Survey respondents also revealed these roadblocks preventing them from travelling sustainably:
- I do not know how to make my travel more sustainable (42%)
- Although I do see options to travel more sustainably, other options tend to appeal more (36%)
- I cannot afford the extra expenditure of sustainable travel (44%)
While results were relatively consistent across all age groups, almost three quarters (74 per cent) of 46-55 year-olds believe most strongly that more sustainability when travelling is needed, followed by 71 per cent of millennials.