Responsible Travel

We are undertaking a company-wide initative with the goal of aligning our current and future business practices with globally accepted principles of responsible travel. For us, Responsible Travel means operating our business in a manner that respects and benefits local people, their cultures, economy and the environment.

Our aim is to be able to clearly demonstrate that FCTG is committed to operating with integrity and respecting fundamental responsibilities in the areas of human rights, the environment, and social equality.

SUMMARY

Our first step in this process is the creation of a Responsible Travel Charter outlining our company commitment to support and develop travel that respects the social and physical dimensions of the destinations that are part of travel experiences we deliver to our customers. The Charter also introduces and establishes the 4 Pillars upon which we believe responsible tourism rest and which provide our company with the best opportunity to make a meaningful impact.

We are also committed to the ambitious goal of becoming a contributing member of the U.N. Global Compact. The UNGC is a United Nations initiative to encourage businesses worldwide to adopt sustainable and socially responsible policies, and to report on their implementation. As a UNGC member, we would be required to publish an annual Communication on Progress which demonstrates our commitment and the measures we are taking in support of corporate sustainability and social responsibility.

What you can expect to see:

  • We are undertaking supplier audits to identify areas of specific concern.
  • We are creating templates for communication to external parties on issues of responsible tourism.
  • We are creating a website to serve as a focal point for internal and external communication and encourage company-wide input on responsible tourism.
  • We are creating educational materials to help bring all FCTG employees on board with the project.
  • We are creating a draft Communication on Progress for internal review.

THE FOUR PILLARS

SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

The cultural and social health of the communities to which we are connected through our business, and the people who live in those communities, are very important to us, not only as a company, but to the individuals that make up the company.

As a global travel business, FCTG is a stakeholder in all of the communities where we operate as well as the communities to which our customers travel. We understand and accept that as a stakeholder we have a responsibility to respect the cultural and social well-being of these communities and that our unique position provides us with the ability to exert a positive influence on these communities.

Our overarching goal is to ensure that as a business we promote:

  • The protection of culturally vulnerable spaces; and
  • Closer ties and respect among people.

Key priorities for the year are:

  1. Providing information on cultural and social responsibility for consultants and creating in-store materials to assist in customer education.
  2. Conducting product reviews aimed at identifying products that are:
    1. Potentially detrimental on a social/cultural level; and
    2. Potentially beneficial on a social/cultural level.
  3. Developing a working partnership with the IIPT with a view to identifying additional areas of focus.

ECONOMIC RESPONSIBILITY

The economic health of the communities to which we are connected through our business, and the people who live in those communities, are very important to us, not only as a company, but to the individuals that make up the company.

As a global travel business, FCTG is a stakeholder in all of the communities where we operate as well as the communities to which our customers travel. We understand and accept that as a stakeholder we have a responsibility to respect the economic well-being of these communities and that our unique position provides us with the ability to exert a positive influence on these communities.

Our overarching goal is to ensure that as a business we promote:

  • Sustainable development;
  • The equitable distribution of the benefits and burdens of tourism;

Key priorities for the year are:

  1. Providing information on economic responsibility for consultants and creating in-store materials to assist in customer education.
  2. Conducting product reviews aimed at identifying products that are:
    1. Potentially detrimental on an economic level; and
    2. Potentially beneficial on an economic level.

ENVIRONMENT RESPONSIBILITY

The protection of the environment is very important to us, not only as a company, but to the individuals that make up the company.

Tourism relies on resources that are fragile and must be protected. As a company, we actively manage and reduce the environmental impact of our business. We also recognise the need to support sustainable travel activities that promote environmental awareness, conserve and protect the environment, and respect wildlife, flora, biodiversity, ecosystems and cultural diversity.

Our overarching goals are:

  • We will work with organisations such as the Carbon Disclosure Project in all the countries we operate in;
  • To establish a sustainability standard for our retail stores; and
  • To establish an environment impact review standard for the products we sell.

Key priorities for the year are:

  1. Establishing an information baseline on our environmental impact and producing clear and measurable goals;
  2. Developing working partnerships with Green Building Council of Australia, the Carbon Disclosure Project, and similar organisations.
  3. Conducting product reviews aimed at identifying products that are:
    1. Potentially detrimental impact on the environment; or
    2. Potentially beneficial impact on the environment.

WILDLIFE RESPONSIBILITY

The welfare of animals is very important to us, not only as a company, but to the individuals that make up the company. We believe that all animals should live in a reasonable state of welfare and are committed to doing our part to make this a reality.

We are engaging, and will continue to engage with employees across the business to benefit from their front-line knowledge and experience. Our goal is to use our influence wherever we can to end the practice of cruel animal attractions. In pursuit of that goal we do not seek to vilify consumers interested in animal attractions, but rather to educate them about potential problems and, where appropriate, provide them with suitable alternatives. Consumers rely on us for our knowledge and experience and accordingly, we must ensure that we have taken all possible steps to understand animal welfare and how it relates to our business.

Our overarching goal is to reach a point where we can confidently state that we do not sell, market, or promote any cruel animal attractions.

Key priorities for the year are:

  1. Establishing internal working group to review potentially problematic products and monitor wildlife welfare issues in general.
  2. Providing information resources on animal welfare for consultants and creating in-store materials to assist in customer education on animal welfare.
  3. Conducting product reviews to ensure that we are not selling products categorised as Unacceptable Practices under the ABTA Animal Welfare Guidance.