Just read in New Statesman (UK based weekly magazine) about this movement which is beginning to take shape, with people who are commited to not fly at all for non-essential trips.
What does fellow tp-ers think about it?
There is no doubt that the ever growing aviation industry is a catastrophe for our environment, and everytime we take the plane we do contribute to a collapsing eco-system, melting ice caps and so on.
As the article point out there are benefits to avoid planes:
"Travel to the Alps and you get a real sense of geography, of evolving culture and changing climatic zones. Arrive by air and all you see is identikit airport terminals and thousands of other culture-shocked, aggravated travellers. Slow travel, like slow food, is about clawing back quality of life"
Is it time that we discover new ways of travelling?
Was to quick to hit the submit button!
It should be: Travel to the 'Alps by TRAIN and..'
I've read books on slow food and practice it myself as much as is possible at the moment. I'm quite a believer of travelling overground to a destination as you have far greater knowledge of where you've come from, how far and not to mention the sights, smells and sounds along the way.
On the other hand, how does a family of 5 travel to the U.S. and A from the UK with only 2 weeks holiday to use up? From that perspective, it seems flying is the only option.
I'm off on a RTW trip on the 1st of May for eight months with absolutely no flying except for the first leg to Singapore. After that it'll be all trains and coaches to London.
I wanted to experience the closest I could get for an old fashioned voyage across the globe sort-of-thing.
There was a very similar thread recently: Should we all travel less
Yes, I think it's a good movement. People should particularly consider the effect of weekend flights to relatively nearby locations.
It's a rather hard thing for people in Australia to embrace, considering we pretty much can't go anywhere (outside the country) without hopping on a plane. But certainly in Europe, there's a lot of scope for improvement.
Tough choices. I think most travellers have some concern for the environment, considering they tend to enjoy seeing it in all its forms.
It certainly is a new thought to get used to, to think in terms of environment rather than 'oh let's save up for this trip to that exotic far faaar away place'.
Or, when you're located in Europe think twice about taking the plane for a weekend trip to Rome/Barcelona/London etc.
I've had a quick look at the other thread.. don't think we necessarily have to travel less, but think more in terms of how we travel - can we make the journey to a place an adventure too, a trip of it's own? (AND be more environmental friendly at the same time, just like you algore! ) I def think it adds something when you travel slow and you get to see the slow change, you get a feeling for the changing climate, geography etc.
But, yes, like you Peter point out it's difficult if you're in Australia to travel somewhere outside the country without the plane. But all of us in Europe, The Americas, Africa, large parts of Asia.. we can do a lot of exploring (far) away from home without taking the plane.
In many sense living in Europe is fantastic because we have a lot to explore in a relatively small geographical area.
I hope this non-flying movement will inspire us to take personal responsibility for the environment - and that a new form of travelling will evolve.
I do think personally that it could add a lot of quality to my own future trips.
PS.Also have to admit that as a mum to a wonderful three month old daughter I feel more responsible than ever for the environment. There must be something left of this planet for future generations to explore!
You should check out "A Fortune-Teller Told Me" by Tiziano Terzani. Nearly 20 years prior, a fortune-teller told him he'd die in a plane crash in 1993(?) and not to fly that year. To prove to himself he could do it, and with a sense of adventure, Terzani spent the entire years travelling Asia by boat, train, foot and car. It's a great read about modern-day supersition and commercial excess.
Man, pretty soon everybody on this board is going to turn into Gelli...
He's a no-flying movement unto himself Profile