In order to keep a tourist destination clean, the focus must be not just during the off-season but also the season as well. Sure, you can’t get all the traffic to behave and keep the environment clean, but the city and locals can stay on the ball!
I live in a tourist town, and they just got done going through the beaches with volunteers to clean all the trash and cigarette butts off the beach. They also clean the streets around here, and they are starting to pick up the pace. It’s hard to keep a city clean when millions of tourists hit it hard each year.
One thing I’ve noticed is that the entire city can easily get worn out and collectively just “give up.” You can see it in the way they act and how they view their jobs and everything. It’s tiring, and they get burnt out. They just let the tourists run all over everything, and then they lethargically clean up the mess afterward.
There is a different approach that can be taken. It’s a cycle that can benefit everyone. Welcome the tourists with a smile and with a clean place. While you encourage them to keep things clean, they will do their thing. But, they are spending money! Enthusiastically and collectively as a community, clean up the mess as it happens.
As you welcome more and more people to a cleaner place, they are going to be less likely to mess things up for you. You see, the atmosphere contributes to the way people act. If you let things get beat up and you allow the dirt and debris to collect during the season, it’s just going to get worse.
Staying on top of things is the best thing you can do. Another thing I have noticed around here is while things are set up for tourists, there needs to be even more of a “nudge” to help them keep the environment clean. More places for people to put out cigarette butts need to be in proper spots.
While this may not seem ideal, I’m not talking about putting them just everywhere. There just needs to be more around here so that less of them end up on the ground and floating everywhere. Hotels and resorts need to have better security camera systems, and so do some of the places around here.
There are all kinds of things you can do to help ensure tourist spots stay clean. The actual sight of cleaning crews during the season helps promote other people to stay clean. They see others doing it, and they are reminded to feel the same way. Furthermore, it also makes them feel guilty about being messy.
Volunteer programs are great, and I have seen them work around here. The community wants to pull together to keep the place clean. It’s just easier when you do it throughout the year, and not just during the off-season when the mess is great and everyone is gone.