With the end of 2022 near, we took some time to evaluate our sustainable efforts of the last years. Although 2020 and 2021 were very challenging years, we did not stand still and continued working on making our business more sustainable. As a rather small company we want to contribute to making tourism a force for good.
Here under we listed some of our achievements throughout the last year:
REDUCING SINGLE USE PLASTICS
– We managed to convince all of our accommodation supplier to put water refill stations in their hotel, so that are customers can refill their bottles instead of having to buy single use plastic water bottles
– Together with 2 of our partners, we let a women cooperation in Chitwan make tote bags as a welcome gift for their customers. Like this we want to eliminate single use plastic bags.
– We continue to create awareness with our clients about this topic, by providing them information and stimulating them to refill their own bottles
– We increased partnerships with small scale family run accommodations, with community home stays and with social enterprises. We further encouraged our accommodation providers to make their accommodations more sustainable.
– We started working with the Travelife Gold Certified hotel Traditional Comfort hotel in Kathmandu. This hotel is now on top of our list to offer to our clients. Depending on their budget off course.
– We created a webpage which is accessible for our accommodation suppliers. With each reservation e-mail they get the link to this webpage. They can find there information about good practices and links to certification labels for hotels.
– We had a workshop about sustainable driving with our new transportation company and their drivers. Our code of conduct was explained in detail to them.
– We started adding a map with public transportation in some of our itineraries. We also promote the ride sharing app Pathao to our clients.
– We add more optional excursions in the travel itineraries, to encourage clients to book those. Some extra activities are organized by or local NGO`s or by marginalized individuals or communities.
TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT
– We organized a 4-day training for our trekking staff. They had 3 days of Professional Leadership Training organized by KEEP
– We made it compulsory for our trekking staff to follow 3 of the online Travelife trainings before they can do a trek with our company.
– We designed a trekking guide manual, in which in clearly explained what we expect from our guides during the assignment they get from us. This makes that everyone works in the same way, and more professional.
– We had two Dutch interns that helped in our agency for 20 weeks.
– We created a customer experience map, to detect flows in the customer journey and to make the overall experience of our clients better.
– We designed an extensive feedback form, to learn how we can improve our travels.
GIVING BACK – DONATIONS & COOPERATION
– We started working together with the Bote Community Homestay in the Madi Valley. We will not only include their homestay in our programs, but also help with the professionalization of the homestays.
– We got in touch with the Sustainable Mountain Architecture and include some of the projects they worked on in our tours, like a visit to Sagarmatha Next in the Everest region. We also will try to include some of the other projects they worked on in our itineraries.
– We paid for an advertisement space in the yearly report brochure of KEEP, we see that as a donation to the NGO.