Tourism businesses, organizations, initiatives and destinations across the industry are now being invited to submit themselves for consideration in the World Responsible Tourism 2015 awards at http://www.worldresponsibletourismawards.com/submissions by Monday, April 6, 2015. Awards will be announced at World Travel Market (WTM) this November.
The prestigious awards scheme, co-founded and organized by Responsible Travel, is part of World Travel Market’s World Responsible Tourism Day – the largest day of responsible tourism action in the world – which takes place on Wednesday, November 4, and celebrates the most inspiring and innovative examples of responsible tourism in practice globally.
Commenting on the variety of organizations expected to submit themselves for consideration, Responsible Travel managing director Justin Francis says, “The principles of responsible tourism can apply to any business, mainstream or niche – it’s what makes the awards so exciting.
We want to play an active role in creating and encouraging a more caring tourism industry and the winners of these awards, big or small, will set examples the rest of the tourism industry can and should follow. “I’m very excited about being able to discover and share their stories this year.”
The 2015 Awards reflect some of the key trends in responsible tourism with a new category ‘Best Innovation for Carbon Reduction’ searching out some of the most successful, replicable examples of innovation in carbon reduction in the tourism industry in light of the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris later this year. 2015 will also see the return of a category for cruise lines, with submissions invited for the ‘Best Sea or River Cruise.’
Chair of Judges, Harold Goodwin, Professor of Responsible Tourism at Manchester Metropolitan University and Director of the International Centre for Responsible Tourism explains why the cruise category is so important this year. “The cruise industry is one of the largest sectors of the tourism market, but also one of the most irresponsible and progress towards more responsible cruising has generally been slow.
“One of the primary purposes of the Awards is to identify good practice and to challenge and inspire others to follow.
“After the success of the panel on freshwater cruising at WTM in November 2014 where three businesses were able to report in detail on their impressive Responsible Tourism practices, we are keen to see how far the cruise industry has come and what can be learnt from this year’s Awards.”
New categories from 2014, focusing on accessible tourism and animal welfare once again make an appearance in the 2015 awards. These were key topics during World Responsible Tourism Day, at WTM London 2014 and their inclusion for a second year reflects how important these topics continue to be within the wider tourism industry.
Awards judge and World Travel Market, Senior Director, Simon Press says: “I am delighted World Travel Market will host the World Responsible Tourism Awards at WTM for the twelfth year. The Awards will play a key role in World Responsible Tourism Day on Wednesday, November 4, which is the largest day of responsible tourism action in the world.
“The awards winners and shortlisted companies act as a benchmark and inspiration for what the global travel and tourism industry can achieve in responsible tourism practice.”
The full list of categories for 2015 is as follows:
• Best Animal Welfare Initiative – supported by the Born Free Foundation
• Best for Beach Tourism – sponsored by Jersey Tourism
• Best Cultural Heritage Attraction – sponsored by Wightlink
• Best Destination for Responsible Tourism – sponsored by Visit Norway
• Best Accommodation for Disability Access
• Best for Engaging People and Culture
• Best Hotel for Local Sourcing
• Best Innovation for Carbon Reduction
• Best for Poverty Reduction
• Best Responsible Tourism Blog – sponsored by Fair Trade Tourism
• Best Sea or River Cruise
• Best for Wildlife Conservation
• People’s Choice in Responsible Tourism
Submissions are now being welcomed from tourism businesses, organizations, initiatives and destinations across the world. Visit http://www.worldresponsibletourismawards.com/submissions to submit your entry. Announcement of the finalists and public voting in the People’s Choice Award will commence in May 2015.
You can also follow @RTAwards or #WRTA2015 on Twitter or like the World Responsible Tourism Awards Facebook Page for the latest updates and stories from our international winners.
For sponsorship opportunities contact Trudi Pearce – firstname.lastname@example.org or 01273 829270.