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8

Short answer: No, it will be collected by the caterer upon arrival. Long answer, Airlines do not actually handle catering, the catering companies do handle this. Airlines will have a catering partner in every airport they operate flights to. In domestic flights where the airplanes is scheduled to have a few sectors assignment (pairing in airlines ...


8

For the traveller, this is pretty much a non-problem. First, the costs of human trafficking are too high to pay back with anything other than sex, so your run-of-the-mill hotel massage is going to be performed by an Japanese obasan (old lady), often blind, with fingers of steel. (Shiatsu means "finger pressure", and they ain't kidding. It's about as ...


7

We (a party of two) have just returned from a trek in the Khoa Sok national park in Thailand. The first portion of the trek included an elephant experience. We expected to maybe have a short ride on an elephant, then feed them... etc etc. What we instead found was this: Arriving at the elephant "sanctuary" we were plonked on top of a random elephant. The ...


6

Comparing aeroplanes and trains shows that aeroplanes are very much the least ecologically friendly mode of transport. As an example from http://www.seat61.com/CO2flights.htm: A site which has some limited data comparing plane, train and car+ferry gives us the following data, but I would assume that the car emissions skew the numbers somewhat, which leads ...


5

Short answer, you can't. However, you can at least make sure they have an official license, and any other accreditation which might lend some credence to their claims. Look for ones that are licensed by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), and consider googling for the tour company plus some key words, to see if anyone has mentioned them or complained ...


5

Goodness, you're not kidding, it's hard to find. I can offer the following: Barking Gecko Tours: 2 Day 1 Night Trek and 3 Day 2 Night Trek, both which certainly don't MENTION elephants, despite having a picture of one on their banners. They are officially licensed by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT).


4

There's a fine line indeed on whether 'voluntourism' is good or bad. There have been cases where so-called volunteering organisations run for-profit enterprises which exploit, say, orphanages under the guise of doing good. One of the best guides I've read while doing my own research into such opportunities is by Ethical Volunteering who have published a ...


3

If you're willing to look a bit further afield, Chiang Dao Nest, a little over an hour north of Chiang Mai, does rather good elephant-free treks. Their site also mentions some treks with elephant rides, but they have plenty of other options as well. Their guides are all local hill tribe people and all in all their setup is pretty good, they'll pick you up ...


3

This question is difficult to answer. Some of the organizations also use the opportunity to raise funds. IN many cases volunteering might actually cost you more then a "a luxury lying-around-in-a-resort vacation". From a organizations perspective having strangers volunteering provides risks. Who is responsible if something goes wrong, what if a the person ...


3

The Ethical Volunteering website appears dormant, and email to them bounces back saying the mailbox is full. The guide is of course still valid and useful. A particular tour provider mentioned on the EV website is a founding member of something called Fair Trade Volunteering which seems like an excellent initiative. One way of evaluating an opportunity might ...


2

Your question touches upon a much more fundamental issue, which is the actual objectively measurable benefit of development aid. Many conservatives and plenty of those having worked in development for extended periods of time seriously question the potential impact of development aid. The former out of principle, the latter through personal experience. And, ...


1

War memorials are mostly about remembering the fallen soldiers that gave their life for defense of the values of the time, not standing a standing tribute to how right of wrong those values were. I the United States we have Iraq and Afghanistan monuments to remember the soldiers that lost their lives defending our values, not as an defensible monument to ...



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