Coming out of Covid times, one of the top trends researchers are seeing is an increase in desire for more sustainable travel options. According to studies, more than 83% of Millennials and over 63% of all travelers want to travel more sustainably, but most are not sure where to begin! We want to offer an easy first step for thinking about what it means to travel in a more eco-friendly way and the benefits of supporting local artists and communities at the same time!
At Arigato Japan, we think that the best way to start to understand a culture is through food. We offer more than 40 food tours in Japan’s top destinations (Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, and Hiroshima and near Mt. Fuji) and we use the delicious dishes this country has to offer as a gateway to introduce our guests to everything that is great about Japan.
Our company has served over 27,000 guests since 2016 and we can’t wait to welcome travelers again as soon as travel reopens. However, we would like to create a Sustainable Eco-Friendly Food Tour kit for our future guests to reduce waste, plastic and honor the “Mottanai” Japanese way of thinking that is being forgotten in the busy modern world.
“Mottainai” is a traditional Japanese term conveying a sense of regret concerning waste. On a food tour, we are using several “waribashi” (disposable chopsticks), “oshibori” (wet towel to clean hands) on our different stops and our guests often purchase plastic drink bottles during their travels around Japan. We want to make a change!
Our project meets all three of the pillars of Sustainable Projects in Travel:
Our goal is to educate our guests, guides and community on the environmental problem of using single-use plastics and “waribashi” (disposable chopsticks) and offer an opportunity to own a personal eco-friendly kit they can use instead, during their whole trip to Japan and long into the future. We also want to do share the results of this project with tourism professionals in our worldwide community to inspire them to consider similar actions!
Sustainable travel is essential but can also be a fun way to bring back a unique and useful souvenir from your adventures.
If we reach our crowdfunding goal, we will offer 100 kits to guests joining our food tours when travel resumes and we will make them available on our website and to our b2b travel partners for their team and clients! We want this kit not to be a one-time project but to be a prototype to help food tour companies in Japan and all over the world to cooperate and join us to take simple first steps in making travel more sustainable and responsible. As well as to explore new ways to tell local stories.
Japan Tomorrow is an innovative crowdfunding platform launched by matcha-jp.com. This is a great opportunity to reach out to a wide audience: travelers from all over the world but also people here in Japan. Matcha are experts in content and social media marketing which will help us tell this new sustainable travel story!