In 2009, five organisations embraced Responsible Tourism, signing a Charter on Responsible Tourism that would guide them through this next stage of the journey together. So what is each partner doing to ensure that responsible and accessible tourism is embraced across the tourism sector?
THE CITY OF CAPE TOWN
The City of Cape Town runs a comprehensive Responsible Tourism Programme under custodianships of the Tourism Department. Various tools and platforms inform and inspire different audiences to make responsible tourism part of their everyday behaviour. The programme includes a suite of digital resources for tourism businesses, an annual Responsible Tourism Week, awareness workshops for schools and citizens, and regular seminars and forums on responsible tourism topics for industry players.
CAPE TOWN TOURISM
Cape Town Tourism (CTT) is committed to encouraging and empowering members of the tourism industry and visitors to Cape Town, to follow Responsible Tourism principles. Before someone can become a member of CTT, the assessor will see that they meet responsible tourism criteria. Responsible Tips are made available to visitors and CTT supports The Code and StreetSmart initiatives. The CTT mobile visitor information vehicle called ‘Thando’, is solar-powered with optimised fuel consumption and reduced emissions to make sure it’s responsible and sustainable.
Federated Hospitality Association of Southern Africa
The Federated Hospitality Association of Southern Africa (FEDHASA) is the custodian of Imvelo Awards. These awards recognise tourism and hospitality businesses that make a real, measurable and sustained contribution to Responsible Tourism. The awards are in line with the National Minimum Standard for Responsible Tourism, the Responsible Tourism guidelines for the South African hospitality industry and the UN World Tourism Organisation’s code of ethics. FEDHASA Cape encourages members in the accommodation and catering sectors of the industry to embrace Responsible Tourism, and to measure and talk about their progress. Each member establishment, no matter how small they may be, can contribute and share their experience with colleagues and the industry at large.
Southern Africa Tourism Services Association
SATSA recognises the growing demand from incoming tourists for Responsible Tourism products, both from sophisticated markets that have the time and money to travel, and emerging markets that are increasingly conscious of renewable resources. The association also notes of the movement of tourism development towards the ‘Green Growth Economy’. We take the stance that a business shift by our members towards Responsible Tourism will open market opportunities, reduce costs over the long term, and open the travel and tourism industry up to development and investment money.
Southern African Association for the Conference Industry
Sustainability is a core value of SAACI, and one of the tributary pillars of the organisation. Each branch committee has a designated representative for sustainability. Where possible, SAACI provides guidance for sustainability best practice, both in terms of the business of conferencing and the environment in which we operate. SAACI is a founding member of the Events Greening Forum. Strong sustainability principles underpin the planning of the annual SAACI conferences, and each event is subject to an eco-audit.