23 Jun

ABTA launches second edition of Travelife Collection

Holidaymakers wanting to book holidays that work hard to protect the environment and support local communities can now find more properties in the second edition of the Travelife Collection, launched today 23 June 2010.

The online directory www.travelifecollection.co.uk is populated by properties across the world which can be booked through the UK’s favourite tour operators - both mainstream and specialists.

Nearly 200 hotels and apartments which have signed up to the Travelife programme have all made conscious business decisions to improve their environmental performance and support their local communities, either via an initial self-assessment or a full audit.

The Travelife scheme also awards properties on how successful they are with regard to their environmental and social performances. Those properties wanting to improve can sign up to have full environmental and social audits carried out on their entire business to work towards achieving the Travelife bronze, silver and gold awards. The hotels, which have achieved Travelife award status are featured in tour operator brochures with the Gold, Silver or Bronze logos.

Achieving a Travelife Award isn't easy and requires a good result from the Travelife Audit. This involves a visit from an auditor, who'll look at employment records and energy bills, interview staff, and inspect the property thoroughly to ensure excellent management of energy and water, chemical usage and community relations - to mention but a few requirements.

There are three levels of award:
Bronze: Businesses have proved that they have policies and procedures in place which actively reduce their environmental impact and treat people in a fair and respectful way.
Silver: Going further than Bronze, these businesses seek ways to provide extra benefit for the local community and environment
Gold: These businesses display a very high commitment to sustainability. They encourage others to get involved, constantly seek new opportunities for improvement, and actively communicate their progress to others.

Nikki White, Head of Destinations and Sustainability at ABTA said: “By booking a Travelife property, people who want to continue to go to the destinations they love with tour operators they trust can now do so with the knowledge that these companies are doing as much as they can to protect their local environment and support their local communities.
Booking a hotel participating in the Travelife programme is one of the easiest ways to get a greener holiday.”

ABTA Members who use Travelife accommodation include the following: Airtours, Cosmos, Direct Holidays, First Choice, Hayes and Jarvis, Kuoni, Neilson, Sovereign Luxury Travel, Sunvil, The Co-operative Travel Group, Thomas Cook, Thomas Cook Signature, Thomas Cook Style Collection, Thomson Holidays, Thomson Tailormade and Virgin Holidays.