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For Tour Operators

  24/10/2016

How to be a Responsible Tour Operator

Members of RTC Vietnam recognize that we have a responsibility to respect the communities and ecosystems we visit. We acknowledge that our tourism-based activities has the potential to do both good and bad, and we are well aware that too often negative impacts have outweighed positive ones.

RTC Vietnam has proposed a set of guidelines intended to help companies, customers and local suppliers recognize their common responsibilities through responsible tourism:

  • Protect the Environment – its flora, fauna and landscapes
  • Respect local cultures – traditions, religions and built heritage
  • Benefit local communities – both economically and socially
  • Conserve natural resources – from the office to the destination
  • Minimize pollution – through noise, waste disposal and congestion

Remaining competitive and innovative

RTC Vietnam is a club of individual, independent companies, each with our own distinctive style and field of operation. As such, we each have our own ways of fulfilling the details of these responsibilities by:

  • Establishing our own policies and involving our staff
  • Informing our clients about sustainable and responsible tourism
  • Encouraging tourists to participate in sustainable and responsible tourism
  • Working with suppliers and partners to achieve sustainable goals and practices
  • Promoting good practice to spread the idea of responsible travel

Achieving social responsibility

  1. Actively involve the local community in planning and decision-making and provide capacity building to make this a reality;
  2. Assess social impacts throughout the life cycle of the operation in order to minimise negative impacts and maximise positive ones;
  3. Endeavour to make tourism an inclusive social experience and to ensure that there is access for all, in particular vulnerable and disadvantaged communities and individuals;
  4. Combat the sexual exploitation of human beings, particularly the exploitation of children;
  5. Be sensitive to the host culture, maintaining and encouraging social and cultural diversity;
  6. Endeavour to ensure that tourism contributes to improvements in health and education.

Achieving environmental responsibility

  1. Assess environmental impacts throughout the life cycle of tourist establishments and operations and ensure that negative impacts are reduced to the minimum and maximising positive ones;
  2. Use resources sustainably, and reduce waste and over-consumption;
  3. Manage natural diversity sustainably, and where appropriate restore it; and consider the volume and type of tourism that the environment can support, and respect the integrity of vulnerable ecosystems and protected areas;
  4. Promote education and awareness for sustainable development  –  for all stakeholders;
  5. Raise the capacity of all stakeholders and ensure that best practice is followed, for this purpose consult with environmental and conservation experts;

Achieving economic responsibility

  1. Assess economic impacts before developing tourism that benefits local communities and minimises negative impacts on local livelihoods;
  2. Maximise local economic benefits by increasing linkages and reducing leakages, by ensuring that communities are involved in, and benefit from, tourism;
  3. Develop quality products that reflect, complement, and enhance the destination;
  4.  Market tourism in ways which reflect the natural, cultural and social integrity of the destination;
  5. Adopt equitable business practises, pay and charge fair prices, build partnerships, and recruit and employ staff recognising international labour standards;
  6. Provide appropriate and sufficient support to small, medium and micro enterprises to ensure tourism-related enterprises thrive and are sustainable.

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