More consumers seeking ways to travel responsibly, Virtuoso claims

More than half of travellers believe factors such as climate change, over-tourism and geopolitical conflicts have encouraged them to travel more responsibly, according to new research by Virtuoso.

The luxury travel network conducted a survey to find out how sustainability is impacting consumer travel decisions for 2024.

The survey highlighted the measures travellers are taking to help combat over-tourism, with 76% of Virtuoso agents reporting that their clients are travelling more regularly in the off season. Additionally, more than 30% of surveyed consumers showed readiness to explore alternative, less-touristed destinations. 

In a nine-point increase from 2023’s survey, 45% of respondents also said that travelling sustainably enhances their holiday experience. 

More travellers are also willing to pay extra to travel responsibly. Up by 5% from 2023, 58% of those surveyed said they would pay more for a sustainable holiday if they knew how the funds would be used. 

The Virtuoso survey also showed demand for additional resources to help travellers make informed decisions. More than 30% of respondents stated that they would be more willing to travel responsibly if they had reliable guidance and a clearer understanding of their options. 

Javier Arredondo, Virtuoso’s vice-president of sustainability, said: “Awareness among travellers is growing and we’re having conversations about how to travel more responsibly in a way we didn’t even a few years ago, which is encouraging.

“An evolution has taken place where sustainability is no longer viewed as an obligation, but as an opportunity for travellers to use their purchasing power to make a positive impact.” 

The survey forms part of Virtuoso’s sustainability initiatives, which also include its establishment of a sustainability council and portfolio of related training courses for members.

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