Fueled by the pandemic, sustainable travel has increasingly risen to the forefront of people’s minds, as people search for more meaning in their lives, their actions and with how they spend their money. And research is showing that luxury travelers want to support local communities, local people and local causes and are willing to pay more to ensure this.
The conscious comeback
According to Virtuoso’s recently released white paper, “Conscious Comeback: Influencing a Sustainable and Regenerative Future for the Travel & Tourism Industry,” over 80% of respondents feel that the pandemic has made them want to travel more responsibly in the future. Travelers are becoming increasingly conscious of their role in protecting the planet, communities and wildlife, with luxury travelers willing to pay more for sustainable experiences.
Affluent customers reported that cost is less of a factor when planning to implement sustainable travel practices, while transparency plays a major part in the decision of where to spend their vacation monies, with 75% of luxury travelers willing to pay more for sustainable travel if they know how their funds are being used.
The importance of transparency
“When talking about sustainability, it is very important for travelers to understand what actions are being taken,” explains Lucie Dalila, Sustainability Manager, Travel Experiences for Luxury Gold. “In the travel and tourism industry there are over 350 sustainability schemes, which can present a challenge for customers, in terms of navigation. So, transparency is hugely important to be enable guests to understand where their money is going, especially if they are paying extra to make an impact.”
“Transparency, traceability and accountability are three important pillars of sustainable travel,” she continues. “Sustainable travel experiences need to be accessible, and it is also important to communicate how we are tracking both our progress and the impact that we are making.”
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A strong sustainability policy
78% of respondents to the Virtuoso white paper believe it is important to choose a company with a strong sustainability policy, with this being one of the top five ways in which people can choose to travel more sustainably.
“This comes as no surprise” says Lucie. “People need to know that what you say has substance. Sustainable travel experiences have always been at the heart of Luxury Gold and across The Travel Corporation, but we also hold ourselves accountable to clear strategic goals.”
How We Tread Right
The Travel Corporation’s sustainability strategy, How We Tread Right sets out a clear 5-year plan with measurable targets across all areas of the business, aligned to the United Nations Global Sustainability Goals. This includes everything from the eradication of single-use plastics, our 5-step Climate Action Plan, to supporting initiatives around the world that positively impact communities and wildlife through our MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences. Results of all our actions and initiatives are available to all via our inaugural Impact Report.
“Aligning with the United Nation’s Global Sustainability Goals gives us a definable and measurable framework and a common reference point with other industries. We are proud to be the leaders in this regard” says Lucie. “This means that our guests can easily see what we are doing and understand how their travels actually leave a positive impact.”
How you can MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® with Luxury Gold
Making a positive impact, making connections and often having a lot of fun along the way, our MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences offer up many ways for luxury travelers to enjoy sustainable travel. Surround yourself with a kaleidoscope of birds at Parque Des Alves in Iguassu, Brazil and learn all about the important conservation work taking place to help protect these beautiful creatures. Meet the inspiring ladies of the Pick City Rickshaw in Jaipur and take an inspiring journey through the city and their lives. Visit the Amy Foundation to support the empowerment of young people in South Africa and delve into sustainable farming and the slow food movement, along with delicious dining at Tracey’s Farmhouse in Ireland.
If you are yearning to place sustainable travel at the heart of your future luxury travels, take a look at our MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences, sustainability strategy and exclusive collection of worldwide guided tours.