Our Human Nature Promise
Our Human | Nature promise is threefold.
We promise to get our own business in order
We are working hard to address our own direct impacts. These are mainly water, energy use and waste disposal at our head office and of course the many holiday brochures we produce each year.
We promise to be a good partner
As a tour operator, we actually own very few of the products we sell. We tailor
make holidays put together with flights, hotels and transfers provided for us
by third party suppliers. We sell thousands of different holidays across the
world so, although it is indirect, this is actually where we have some of our
biggest impacts and is a big area of focus for us. We are a fair partner and
will always treat our suppliers with respect and honestly. All suppliers operate
under a contract and our Finance department is tasked with ensuring payments
are made within target deadlines.
As part of being a good partner we aim to work with our suppliers to encourage
them to be more sustainable. We audit our hotel suppliers under the Travelife
Sustainability Scheme (for more information see www.its4travel.com)
. This scheme assesses hotels for environmental impact, staff relations and
level of community support. Successful hotels can qualify for a bronze, silver
or gold Travelife Award.
We reward suppliers taking action on sustainability by displaying the bronze,
silver or gold awards earned against the relevant hotels in our brochures and
on our website. Look out for these and factor them into your holiday planning.
We encourage hotels to go greener by supporting them through the Travelife
auditing process, sharing good practice through the distribution of a quarterly
sustainability newsletter 'The Virgin Way' and speaking at various international
events to encourage participation in sustainable tourism.
We are keen to highlight excellence in sustainable tourism. That's why we act
as headline sponsors of the Responsible
Tourism Awards each year.
We realise our suppliers face many challenges and are often not large businesses
themselves. That's why we invest in destination initiatives that help make it
easier for our suppliers to do the right thing. These are some of the projects
we are currently supporting.
- A joint project with Virgin Holidays, Oxfam and the Travel Foundation to help Caribbean farmers grow more product and encourage local hotels to buy it, rather than relying on imported goods.
- A scheme to raise awareness of sustainable seafood issues in the Caribbean with The Travel Foundation and The Marine Stewardship Council.
- Switch Off - Save Big; a project with the Travel Foundation to encourage Caribbean hoteliers to save energy and water.
- A Travel Foundation project to help Maasai villagers maximise the money they earn from tourists visiting their villages.
We promise to give something back
We aim to support the communities we operate in for generations to come by creating life changing opportunities for young people. To find out more about how we do this click