This homemade sign on one of the ubiquitous tuk-tuks in Thailand says it all: Farang (foreigners) are a precious commodity in traffic-choked Bangkok and throughout the land of smiles. Tuk-tuk drivers depend on tourism for their livelihoods—sightseers willing to shell out a relative fortune for the ride of a lifetime. But with more than 11 million visitors each year, can the country afford to have people breeze in and out, leaving a thick trail of exhaust in their wake?
The government has been making an effort to curb pollution and increase awareness about global warming with events like Bangkok Car Free Day. But seeing this sign got me thinking about the trade-offs of travel. How can we live up to the responsibility that this sentiment places on our shoulders?
Please send us your reactions, similar travel dilemmas, or thought-provoking photos about the tenuous relationship visitors often have with their destinations.