Responsible tourism – Cape Town Tourism’s investment in the future

Research conducted by UCT in 2006, revealed that tourism operators were both aware of and willing to be proactive about becoming more ‘green’ but lacked the knowledge as to how they could put responsible tourism practices into action.

Cape Town Tourism (CTT) has been developing ways to address this gap ever since, with the result that responsible tourism has become a cornerstone of the CTT marketing plan and one of the key focus areas in all tourism plans ahead of 2010.

Much of CTT’s work surrounding sustainable tourism is geared to help local businesses become more socially, economically and environmentally aware. These objectives are rolled out through various activities, guidelines, support programmes, affiliate bodies and by investing in the education of their own staff.

Here are some of the ways Cape Town Tourism is promoting responsible tourism:

• The Official Cape Town Visitors Guide contains specific information about sustainable tourism and encourages visitors to Cape Town to be mindful of them

• As of 2009, would be CTT members who are not star-graded will have to undergo a responsible tourism assessment (which includes a full two hour consultation with a CTT official and a representative from the grading council). Within this assessment are seven key compliancy issues. 5 out of 7 of these compliancy issues must be met before membership is approved. CTT will assist would-be members in achieving this compliancy

• Members are reassessed on these compliancy issues every two years.

• Training courses and green guidelines are on offer to new tourism businesses

• Fair Trade Tourism South Africa has become an affiliate to CTT, offering support and advice to members. In addition, FTTSA has offered the first five members of CTT to become Fair Trade accredited a 30% discount off their annual FTTSA membership fee in their first year

• The City of Cape Town has embarked on a plan to transform Cape Town into a responsible tourism destination. Cape Town Tourism is actively involved in creating procedures towards achieving this goal.

• CTT and the City have created a responsible tourism framework around 2010, which includes a set of ‘Green Goals’ programmes to ensure social, economic and environmental sustainablilty around the World Cup event

• CTT staff are being provided with 6 week training courses towards understanding and implementing sustainable tourism

• Cape Town Tourism fully supports the establishment and monitoring of an international code of conduct (www.thecode.org)to prevent child sex tourism by making the tourism and hospitality industry vigilant and aware. 

• Internal programmes run by CTT include Operation Green (which requires staff to become involved in environmental projects) and Operation Heart (each CTT region chooses a community project to become actively involved in)

• Recently CTT celebrated Responsible Tourism Day by planting trees

People wishing to know more about Cape Town Tourism’s Responsible Tourism initiatives, should contact Cape Town Tourism on 021 487 6800.

ENDS

Released for Cape Town Tourism by
Brenda Vos
Rabbit in a Hat Communications
brenda@rabbitinahat.co.za
+ 27 21 447 3198
+ 27 82 961 9433

For more info on Cape Town Tourism
Lianne Burton – Executive Manager, Marketing
lianne@capetown.travel
+27 21 487 6800
+27 82 926 0505
www.capetown.travel

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