The majority of consumers claiming to purchase holidays according to their green credentials are merely paying lip-service to the latest social trend.
Following a face-to-face survey of 2,000 consumers, TNS Travel and Tourism group director head of travel and tourism Tom Costley said as many as 45% of respondents now claim to take into account environmental issues when choosing a holiday.
However, with only 5% of the same group admitting to physically making any carbon-offsetting payments within the last year and just 3% actually changing plans because of green issues, Costley said the 45% cannot be trusted to act on their claims.
He added: “We have a number of people saying things to be socially acceptable and claiming to reduce their environmental impact is one of those things.
“We have to be very careful (of this) in our research.”
Costley added the degree of importance British consumers claim to attach to green issues is still a long way behind more prosaic factors.
The same survey revealed 90% of consumers choose a destination according to its safety – the same amount who claimed the quality of the accommodation is a deciding factor.