Embrace relaxation and eco-consciousness this holiday

The Earth is facing an array of environmental challenges, and experts are sounding the alarm that swift and co-ordinated actions are necessary to prevent irreversible damage. As responsible global citizens, it falls upon all of us to ensure a sustainable planet for future generations.

According to Shaun Lamont, managing director of First Group Hotels and Resorts, even while enjoying a well-deserved holiday we have the opportunity to contribute to this crucial cause. “By embracing eco-conscious practices during your next getaway, you are not only likely to experience the endorphins that come with relaxation and rejuvenation, but you will also experience the satisfaction of making a meaningful impact on the environment.”

He adds that First Group Hotel and Resorts recognises the urgent need to address environmental challenges: “While as a business, we recognise that we are not where we want to be just yet, we remain committed to being a responsible hospitality brand, and we’re always looking for ways to reduce our ecological footprint and encourage our guests to do the same.”

Lamont provides the following eco-conscious tips that all holidaymakers can employ this June/July holiday:

1. Reduce, reuse, recycle: Avoid single-use items like plastic bottles, straws and bags wherever possible. Instead, bring along your refillable water bottle and tote bag. Remember to reuse towels and linens at your accommodation to conserve water and energy. When it comes to personal care, choose eco-friendly toiletries. They are not only good for the environment but for you too!

2. Conserve energy: During this winter holiday, develop a routine of switching off lights and electronics when they’re not in use. Embrace the cosy ambience of natural sunlight and make the most of the comforting warmth provided by fireplaces in self-catering accommodations (if available) or even gather around an outdoor fire in the evenings. This way, you can reduce your reliance on energy-intensive air conditioning systems while maximising comfort and charm.

3. Respect wildlife and nature: Appreciate wildlife and natural environments without littering, feeding animals or disturbing vegetation. Follow designated trails and maintain a safe distance from animals.

4. Opt for eco-friendly transport: If you’re travelling with a group of three or more people, consider self-driving instead of flying to reduce your carbon footprint. Once you reach your destination, choose eco-friendly transportation alternatives like biking or walking whenever possible. This is especially convenient if you’re staying at a resort, making it easy to explore on foot or pedal your way around while reducing your environmental impact.

5. Conserve water: Use water responsibly by taking shorter showers, reusing towels, and reporting leaks or dripping faucets, especially if you are holidaying on the South Coast or the Eastern Cape. Look for waterless or low-water alternatives for personal hygiene, such as dry shampoo, hand sanitiser or eco-friendly wipes.

“This holiday season is a perfect chance to kick back, unwind and create magical lasting memories, all while actively preserving our magnificent planet for our children’s children. By embracing sustainable practices and making mindful choices even on holiday, we can contribute to a brighter future,” Lamont concludes.

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