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Welcome to EXPEDITIONIST, a local online magazine on conscious travel, conversations, and culture. We hope you enjoy your stay! 

3 Socially Conscious Travel Companies You Need To Know About

3 Socially Conscious Travel Companies You Need To Know About

Travelling the world can be one of the most rewarding and self-enlightening things you can do in your lifetime, and while that in and of itself is fulfilling, there are certain ways for you to leave a place slightly better than when you found it, in whatever capacity. 

We recently had the pleasure of stumbling across a few amazing travel companies that strive to deliver the best of both worlds. These companies take fellow backpackers and eager travellers to unbelieveable destinations, open their eyes to new landscapes and experiences they may not have found otherwise and at the same time, organize workshops and volunteer programs designed specifically to give back to the communities visited that need the most support. 

If you are the type of traveller that wants to reduce your personal footprint as well as doing your part to uplift and truly appreciate the countries you visit, then this list of socially conscious travel companies need to be in your google search history. They’re definitely in ours.

 

Operation Groundswell

Let’s start this list with our personal favourite: Operation Groundswell. This sustainable and socially conscious company calls its fellow trip-goers ‘backpactivists’ and the nickname certainly fits the itineraries that travellers can expect to find when booking a trip through this site.

Whether it be trekking through the small rural mountain towns of Guatemala, to building houses and wells, to volunteering in local schools in the area, each trip with Operation Groundswell aims to give each community visited the most it possibly can, in whatever way they can.

Not only do these backpactivists get to explore more obscure and unique parts of the world with an amazing group of people, but they get to fully immerse themselves in the day-to-day lives of the people they set out to provide support to. These trips are the kind of experiences that feed your soul. A definite must-try. 

 Photo: Daniel Chekalov

Photo: Daniel Chekalov

 

We Are Bamboo

For the die-hard animal lover/adventure traveller, We are Bamboo is basically a dream to true. Similar to Operation Groundswell in that its guided trips are centred around volunteer work and giving back to the communities visited, however the main difference between the two is that We Are Bamboo primarily focuses on helping out our furry mammal friends and other members of the animal kingdom.

They have numerous types of trips that take travellers to places like Thailand and Cambodia where guests can volunteer in animal sanctuaries feeding, bathing, and spending quality time caring for animals that have been rescued from pouchers and other dangerous or life-threatening circumstances.

Any animal-lover can attest to the fact that animals have souls, feelings, and many other complex emotions we both share, and it’s equally important to give them as much love, care and attention as we would our human counterparts. If you’ve always had a soft spot for animals, this company is your bread and butter for meaningful travel experiences.

 Photo: Trinity Treft

Photo: Trinity Treft

 

Book It Green

This company specializes in helping to reduce the carbon footprint of each of its travellers in a unique way. Similar to companies like Tentree that plant a tree for each item of clothing sold, BookItGreen plants a tree for each night booked on their site. Their main focus is sustainable, eco-friendly spaces that guests can enjoy at their leisure while feeling good about helping out the environment—a win-win for you and Mother Nature!

Each accommodation on their site is subject to a sustainability rating that covers 15 different criteria, from renewable energy generation, to the use of ecological cleaning products, to active waste reduction strategies, to the collection and treatment of water sources and many more.

These places are then given a final score of between 1 and 5 green leaves, showing you, the traveller, how sustainable your desired accommodation will be. If you’re passionate about nature conservation, reducing your footprint, and giving back to this beautiful world of ours while on an adventure, this is the site for you! 

 Photo: Matthew Smith

Photo: Matthew Smith

  

At EXPEDITIONIST, we are always striving to uncover the next best thing, from dedicated companies taking an interest in sustainability, to individuals making a difference in their communities. These 3 enterprises above are just the types we like, and we hope you enjoy booking your next adventures through any one of them.

 

Any companies you can think of that we missed? Please share in the comments below and we’d be happy to pass on the information to our EXPEDITIONIST friends!

 

Featured Image:  Daniel Funes Fuentes

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