A green travel agent is a travel professional who specializes in crafting vacations and adventures that are ecologically conscious. By crafting packages that combine ecologically sound facilities with opportunities for volunteerism and eco-tourism, a green travel agent can help provide a service to those who want to ensure that traveling does not come with an ecological impact. This can be a great career for people who want to combine organizational and customer service skills with a passion for the environment.
One of the major facets of a green travel agent job involves finding green hotels that cater to eco-conscious clients. This usually requires an understanding of certification processes that ensure that a hotel or in is actually engaging in environmentally safe practices, instead of merely just saying that they do to bring in eco-tourist dollars. Some of the practices that can help a green travel agent pick up a hotel for packages include recycling, organic and locally grown food, and green building resources such as solar power, composting, and the use of sustainable building materials.
Choosing hotels to offer to eco-tourist guests is only part of the job of a green travel agent. Just like a regular travel agent, a green travel agent may need to arrange transportation that meets a client's needs. In this area of specialization, this may include finding rental cars that are hybrid, hunting down train trips instead of flights to save on fossil fuel use, or even locating bike or electric car rentals to help green tourists get around town.
With shelter and transportation taken care of, a green travel agent must focus on finding activities for travelers that match an eco-conscious lifestyle. This may include visits to wildlife preserves and organic farms, but may also include activities that let travelers volunteer time to ecological projects. This may include helping local conservationists with research, such as assisting marine biologists with dolphin or whale counts. It may also involve helping a local community start green projects, such as building recycling centers or helping to install better insulation around houses using recycled material.
A green travel agent must be able to offer a variety of tours and services that combine shelter, transportation, food, and activity choices in an assortment of exciting locations. Many may travel to locations to check out the offerings before crafting packages that will bring in tourists. Green travel agents must also be good at helping separate green-catering businesses co-ordinate efforts to provide better services for green travelers. By helping communities connect through green industry, a green travel agent can play an important part in raising awareness about eco-conscious living and creating successful commercial ventures with an emphasis on environmentally safe practices.