The government of New Zealand pledged this Wednesday to take action against backpackers who defecate in the wild and attract visitors of a higher economic level, within its tourism recovery plan after the pandemic of Covid-19.
Tourism Minister Stuart Nash claimed to foreign travelers and their own fellow citizens that they respect the country’s sustainability image because “defecating on the side of the road does not represent New Zealand as a nation.”
“We have many vans in the country with no toilet, so that when the driver and passenger want to go to the bathroom, they stop on the side of the road and they defecate in our rivers. As for me, the days of tourists renting those cheap vans are long gone, “the minister told RNZ radio.
Thus, pledged to ban tourists from renting vans or caravans without a toilet, a measure foreseen within the plan to reopen to international tourism when the coronavirus crisis subsides.
“I have the ambition that when the borders open Global, New Zealand is considered one of the first three travel options by the most distinguished travelers in the world, “he stressed, although he specified that this would not mean that the doors would be closed to backpackers traveling on a tighter budget.
Tourism is one of the booming sectors in New Zealand, with 11.4 million international visitors in 2019, numbers that are set to fall far short this year due to the pandemic.