Responsible Tourism Timeline InfographicBlog

Responsible Tourism - Our Journey So Far

If there is one positive from the last year, it's that there has been time and opportunity for reflection. It's also given the opportunity to look at our sustainability.

Those of you that know Chris and I will know that we have a deep seated passion for making our educational trips and school expeditions as sustainable and ethical as possible.

We believe it's vital for two reasons: 

  1. because it's just the right thing to do. We're are sending school groups to countries where they are a guest of the local community. Travel is not a right, it's a privilege, and with that privilege comes responsibility. It's important that we act respectfully and ensure our adventures maximise the positive impact and minimise the negative.
  2. because we have a wonderful and amazing opportunity to educate the next generation about how to be more sustainable and responsible travellers. 

Back in 2018, STC Expeditions was the first UK travel company to achieve the coveted Travelife Certificate in Sustainability. This certificate covers 200 separate criteria and confirms we adhere to ISO14001 (environmental management), ISO26000 (social responsibility) and many Global Sustainable Tourism Council Criteria.

We are currently in the process of a re-audit to reconfirm our Certification, so we thought we'd look back on our sustainability journey to this point. Whilst we're proud of the many policies we've introduced, the positive steps we've taken and the various industry 'firsts' we've achieved since way back in 2006, our work is by no means done.

In fact, our greatest challenge lies ahead - the climate crisis. We are in the midst of enacting our Carbon Action Plan, amongst a whole scale review of our destinations, trips and expeditions. A key part of our Carbon Action Plan was to fast track our long held desires to set up a UK programme - something we did last year and we're looking forward to welcoming our first groups to The Bioasis this summer.

Time is not on our side when it comes to the Climate Crisis. We all need to look long and hard about the impact we have. Asking hard questions of your tour operator and their approach to sustainability and ethical travel is a good starting point. STC Expeditions is more commited than ever to tackling these challenges head on and taking tough decisions about our sustainability.