At ABTA we believe that travel and tourism is a powerful force for good: creating economic and social value, sustaining jobs, supporting businesses and boosting inward investment not only for destinations where many livelihoods depend on tourism, but also here in the UK.

Travel companies are addressing the environmental and social challenges that tourism faces by, for example, delivering on carbon reduction targets, developing excursions which maximise the benefit to local communities, reducing single use plastic and implementing human rights and animal welfare policies.

ABTA is committed to working with our Members, their suppliers, destination authorities, travellers, the wider industry, and the UK government to build a more sustainable industry so tourism is a benefit to everyone.

Building on ABTA’s longstanding work on sustainability, our Tourism for Good report provides a framework to guide ABTA’s activities to support its commitment to continue to champion sustainability with its Members, the wider travel industry, destinations and customers, as well as ways in which this can be supported by policies and action by the UK Government.

We work with:

Our Members

ABTA’s Member programme Better Places provides a practical five-step process for adopting a sustainability approach to business.

We recognise that our Members each have different business models and are all at different stages on their sustainability journey.

We support travel companies to:

  • Manage and monitor the environmental, economic, cultural and social impacts of their business activities, with guidance across climate change, waste and plastic, human rights, child safeguarding, local impact and animal welfare;
  • Encourage partners and suppliers to improve their contribution to the sustainable development and management of tourism;
  • Raise awareness amongst customers of responsible tourism including cultural and environmental sensitivity at their destination.

In addition, Travelife for Accommodation, run by ABTA, is an international sustainability certification programme that helps its Members, from small accommodation to large hotel groups, to improve their social, environmental and economic impacts. Today Travelife supports over 1,500 Member hotels in over 50 countries with improving their sustainability performance and highlighting their achievements to both travellers and travel companies. 

Destinations

Protected natural environments and local culture, authentic experiences, local food, happy staff and feeling welcomed by the community all enhance and enrich an experience.

We have developed strong relationships with destination representatives and governments over many years, and are often their first port of call on issues relating to UK outbound tourism. This means we are able to raise any issues of concern to our Members with them and help identify collaborative solutions. We use our expertise to promote and support sustainable destination management and strategic tourism planning and share examples of best practice from around the world. 

Customers

Consumer demand for holidays that benefit local people, the economy and care for the environment is growing every year. Our research shows that half of customers consider sustainability credentials to be important or essential when choosing a company to book their holiday with. This has been steadily rising, from only 20% back in 2011.

All travellers, whether on holiday or business have an important part to pay in making better places to live in and to visit and reducing their carbon footprint. We have a range of tips that anyone can take on their next holiday.

 

Accessing our sustainability tools and resources

If you’re an ABTA Member, you can sign in to the Member Zone to access the Better Places programme and a wide range of practical resources and tools to help your business develop a sustainable approach and address the issues relevant to it.

If you’re not yet a Member and would like to find out more, please click here.

 

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