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Code of Ethics

Ahoy, fellow explorers! 

In a time when responsible travel is more important than ever, we at The Broke Backpacker aim to adventure ethically. Our Code of Ethics is a roadmap that guides us through the landscapes of both travel and publishing, ensuring that we leave a positive impact on the places we visit and the stories we tell.

The Broke Backpacker is all about bringing epic adventure and budget travel tips to you. We want to empower you to ditch your desk and set out to travel the world no matter how much money you have in the bank. 

As one of the leading backpacking blogs on the internet, we strive to keep our guides as mindful as possible. Mindful of the environment, mindful of the cultures we are lucky enough to immerse ourselves in, and mindful of the content we create for you. 

We believe that travel can be a powerful force of good, just as long as we abide by a set of values and standards that set us apart both as travellers, writers, and simply as humans too. 

will laughing with hunzair women in hunza valley
Support locals, no matter where you go.

Our Ethical Travel Principles

1. Respect for Cultures

As a team, we carry not only our backpacks but also a deep respect for the cultures we encounter. We celebrate diversity, embrace differences, and approach every destination with an open heart and a curious mind. We follow local customs and laws and seek out travel experiences that help us to actually get to the people who call these far-flung lands their home. 

2. Environmental Stewardship

From reducing single-use plastics to supporting eco-friendly accommodations, we’re all about leaving nature untouched. We aim to reduce our carbon footprint on our travels, especially in remote and fragile ecosystems.

When camping and trekking, we follow the “leave no trace” principles and ALWAYS make sure to dispose of trash where it belongs: in the bin. 

We like to use (and support) brands that make a point to produce eco-friendly products. We’re not above re-wearing the same clothes, and often wash them ourselves in buckets or sinks. 

3. Supporting Local Communities

We believe in the power of travel to uplift communities. Our journeys are not just about discovering new landscapes but also about supporting local economies. By engaging with small businesses, artisans, and community initiatives, we aim to make a positive impact on the places we visit, which in turn contributes to sustainable development.

We try to seek out locally owned guesthouses instead of resort chains, and you’ll always find one of us at a street food cart instead of a McDonald’s.

4. Ethical Animal Tourism

We are STRONGLY committed to animal welfare around the world. You will never see The Broke Backpacker team promoting or engaging in harmful activities such as but not limited to: elephant rides, seeing captive whales, visiting zoos, or attending circuses. 

5. Ethical Transportation

While it’s not always possible to avoid flights, we travel overland whenever possible and always look for local routes of transportation. From my adventure going from the UK to Papua New Guinea, I didn’t take a single flight. Other team members have embarked on epic overland journeys too, like foregoing a $1000 flight and instead bussing it across Afghanistan. 

Many of us travel by hitchhiking, and others by cycling or motorbike – all ways that help us live out the Broke Backpacker manifesto

Our Publishing Ethics

1. Authentic Storytelling

We are committed to authentic storytelling. Our narratives reflect the genuine experiences we encounter on the road, free from exaggeration or misinformation. We keep it real – and make sure to keep content updated every 6 months. Our writers actually visit the places they write about, and we always try to keep facts fresh. This team is full of real backpackers, many of whom live on the road. 

2. Responsible Content Creation

We recognize the influence our platform carries and the responsibility that comes with it. We avoid promoting harmful behaviors and only promote places and products that we would stay in (and use) ourselves. We always make it known when we have affiliate links within our content (this is how we fund the site), and unlike many other blogs, thoroughly test out the gear we write about. 

We’re not into sugarcoating – we always aim to share both the positive and negative sides of a destination, regardless of whether or not a trip was sponsored. 

3. Honest statistics and skills

We refuse to inflate The Broke Backpacker’s statistics or successes. We don’t buy followers, fans or readers, and aren’t afraid to keep it real when speaking on our failures. You won’t find our team dreaming up accolades or pretending to be something or someone they are not. We’re proud of being honest about where we’ve been and what we are capable of.

Collaborations and Partnership Ethics

1. Ethical Partnerships

The Broke Backpacker selects its partnerships carefully based on mutual respect, trust, and shared values. Our collaborations are transparent, and we disclose all partnerships to our audience. We make sure that the people we work with and promote across the site are as committed to responsible, ethical travel as we are. 

2. Integrity in Collaborations

We don’t promote products and companies just for a payout. We maintain editorial independence and ensure that our recommendations are unbiased and genuine. We refuse to compromise our integrity for cash, and you can rest assured that our opinions will never be bought. 

When working with brands, we deliver well and we deliver on time. We value all of our partnerships, but we make sure they know that our readers come first. We refuse to lie for the sake of a check, and we strive to maintain the credibility that has kept us going for more than a decade

Join Our Journey

This Code of Ethics is more than just a set of guidelines; it’s a commitment to ethical exploration that all of us take seriously. With that in mind, I urge you to join us in our goal to travel and create responsibly.

In a time of mass tourism and entire websites written by robots, sustainable and ethical behaviour – both on and offline – is more important than ever.

Cheers, amigos. Hope to catch you in a locally owned guesthouse somewhere on the wild open road.

Will chilling on the terrace with two white dogs

Will Hatton
Founder, The Broke Backpacker

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