Responsible tourismAs a small business, we do our best to put sustainable development and responsible tourism at the heart of our activities. It is not always easy and we're not perfect. As in other areas of life, there will always be contradictions and tensions. However, being conscious of our impact and looking at ways in which we can do better is part of our ethos.
Sustainable tourism is an industry committed to making a low impact on the environment and local culture, while helping to generate future employment for local people. Responsible tourism is the same, except it shifts the responsibility on to all of us to act sustainably.
This is our small contribution to responsible tourism...
- We employ local staff.
- We support local students through their studies in tourism and when possible, we continue to employ them after their studies.
- We also take on international students for training, allowing them to have an experience of working in a different environment and culture, thereby broadening their own horizons and understanding of the world.
- We use local hotels, restaurants and taxi companies, run and owned by local people. These people benefit directly from our clients.
- We sort our waste, recycling and re-using what we can.
- We use energy efficient light bulbs for lighting the main office
- We aim to reduce our energy consumption over the next year by making sure that all computers, printers, lights are fully switched off at the end of the day.
- We make the most of living and working on a sunny island, so all of our hot water is heated by solar panels.
- In the summer we keep our offices cool using high technology... we open the windows (it seems to work!). Unless we are experiencing insufferable temperatures (for working), and then we use an energy efficient cooling system (not air conditioning)
- In the winter, we keep ourselves warm by wearing more clothes and huddling around the printer. Sometimes we use our energy efficient heating system.
- Our office supplies are now environmentally friendly wherever possible (not always easy to find on Corsica, but we do our best).
- We do our best to limit the journeys we take in the van by coordinating luggage transfers and other errands wherever we can, thereby saving fuel (unleaded or diesel of course).
- The majority of our holidays are active holidays that involve people power and have a limited impact on the environment.
- We ask our clients to respect the beautiful environment in which we live, by not picking local flowers, sticking to the paths in the national parks and taking their rubbish home with them.
What can you do?
Responsible tourism is about taking responsibility for the impact you will have on the environment and local culture. A responsible tourist can reduce the impact of their travels in many ways, including:
• informing themselves of the culture, politics, and economy of the communities visited
• anticipating and respecting local cultures, expectations and assumptions
• contributing to intercultural understanding and tolerance
• supporting the integrity of local cultures by favouring businesses which conserve cultural heritage and traditional values
• supporting local economies by purchasing local goods and participating with small, local businesses
• conserving resources by seeking out businesses that are environmentally conscious, and by using the least possible amount of non-renewable resources.
• Choose a responsible travel agency or tour operator through whom you could book your trip.
• Consider trying an active holiday, such as walking or cycling. If that’s not for you, choose a mode of transport that is as energy efficient as possible.
• Read about the culture and environment of your holiday destination before you travel.
• Think twice before jumping on a plane. The same journey might be possible (and more enjoyable) by train and ferry. Contact us to discuss your travel plans. If you do have to travel by plane, what about contributing to carbon offsetting?
• Carry a durable water container that can be re-filled at the drinking fountains. If you prefer to buy bottled water, then try to buy the local brands.
• Carry a small bag in which to take your rubbish back to your hotel at the end of the day. Leave nothing behind except for your footprints...
Best wishes and bon voyage!