Kuoni has become the firstUKtour operator to launch a Fair Tade holiday package, which it is hoped will act as a blueprint for Fairtrade holidays worldwide.
It will offer aFair Trade Garden Routetour toSouth Africa, available through its Ananea sustainable travel brochure, following the Fairtrade Labelling Organisation’s endorsement of the launch of the world’s first destination-based Fair Trade Tourism certification programme in South Africa (FTTSA).
Accommodation on the 13-night tour is in Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa country houses, hotels and lodges in the Amakhala Game Reserve,PlettenbergBay, Swellendam, Overberg and Stellenbosch.
Kuoni head of corporate responsibility Matthias Leisinger said: “As part of its corporate responsibility programme, Kuoni has been committed to sustainable tourism for many years.
“We believe our Fair Trade package toSouth Africaprovides travellers with a wide variety of exciting holiday experiences whilst at the same time offering travellers the chance to support Fair Trade in Tourism SouthAfrica.”
FTTSA launched its product certification programme in 2003 to ensure that commissions and contractual agreements are fair and create a better deal for small and emerging tourism providers. Local social economic and environmental impacts are managed equitably and responsibly resulting in net benefits for workers, small businesses and communities.
A premium is incorporated into the retail price of each holiday package and channelled into a cooperatively managed fund. The fund is responsible for investing premium monies in socio-economic development projects that will improve the quality of life of Fair Trade Tourism beneficiaries.
FTTSA said it hoped Kuoni’s packages will, over the next four years, provide a basis for a worldwide Fair Trade label for tourism.
South African Tourism chief marketing officer Roshene Singh said: “South Africais proud to be the world’s first Fair Trade tourism destination.
“Tourism is one ofSouth Africa’s biggest earners and it is critical that we retain as much revenue as possible in our country and ensure that tourism creates sustainable, quality jobs and livelihoods. FTTSA’s achievements are yet another example of howSouth Africais pioneering responsible tourism, and we look forward to welcoming Fair Trade travellers to our diverse and beautiful country”.
By Linsey McNeill