Susan Sarandon on the first acting jobs she took just to travel: Women Who Travel podcast

And when Bernie went after Trump’s victory and had town halls in Trumpland, people ended up embracing him and agreeing with everything he said. So that gives me hope that basically we can be human beings all united to help our neighbors, if you just appeal at the right level, and there are so many people doing amazing things all over this country, I mean, talking to teachers who just spend an awful lot of hours trying to help kids whose parents don’t speak English but who want their kids to succeed, and trying to deal with school boards that are completely gone in the wrong direction, and health care workers, and people who house people, and people… There really are, in every community, wonderful human beings, wonderful human beings who move me with their generosity.

CM: You were mentioning that the pandemic has given us the time and the opportunity to really re-evaluate a lot of things in our lives. And I think one of the things about the Conde Nast Traveler team that we have thought about a lot is moving around the world in a more responsible, ethical and eco-responsible way. How do you see your own habits changing or what hope emerges from this reassessment from a travel perspective?

SS: Even having that in a travel conversation with a brand that’s a luxury brand [like Fairmont]and that’s been around for a long time, I think it’s huge that they’ve gone to the trouble and feel like there are people who are going to be staying at their hotels who are interested in a way to offset their footprint, and that they have programs dealing with reforestation, water conservation, energy conservation, food waste, and organizing, and all those things that maybe hadn’t been front and center, especially when you look at iconic hotels, like this one in Banff, and this one, the Plaza.

It’s easier to deal with that in the Maldives where you’re building new and those things are part of our conversation. But I think a lot of people are aware that they want to offset their footprint in some way, and they want to know how the places they’re staying, what are these communities doing? They want to make sure that they somehow benefit from moving these communities to where the hotels are.

I mean, it always made me laugh to be in Vegas when they say, “Turn off your light when you go out.” It’s ridiculous in Vegas. But I mean, there are other places where it makes sense to develop these habits.

The other thing is, yes, don’t use plastic straws. Recycle, do blah, blah, blah. But, when you have Chevron getting away with dumping billions of toxic waste in Ecuador, when you hear things like that happening, I think we need to be more aware of the big issues, military pollution with our military and what big corporations are doing, and holding them accountable, and being more involved that way.

So yeah, plant your garden and start paying attention to the detergent you use, and be aware of what’s in cosmetics, and how much fashion you buy, and all those things that you can do personally. But also look to your government which is the big spender on pollution. And demand… These kids that’s in the Sunrise movement, God bless them, they really tied the issue to politics.

And so, yeah, it’s great that Fairmont hotels and resorts are coming into this century understanding that people care about this, and people are having this conversation, who are fortunate enough to travel and stay in their hotels. And I think we have to praise them for that, but also keep the pressure on in our businesses.

CM: Well, thank you very much for joining us, Susan. We really appreciate that.

SS: You are so welcome.

CM: You can find more information about Susan’s work with Fairmont at fairmont.com/offers/grandest-feelings. Be sure to follow Women Who Travel on Instagram and sign up for our bi-weekly newsletter.

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