2016 a bumper year for sustainable tourism

Guest Contributor

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TUI Group has published the 2016 progress report for its sustainability strategy ‘Better Holidays, Better World’. The data in the report suggests that 2016 was the year that sustainable tourism became mainstream.

TUI customers booked 6.3 million ‘greener and fairer’ holidays in 1,170 hotels certified to a sustainability standard. Furthermore, holidaymakers participated in 846,000 TUI Collection excursions which focus on sustainability and benefits to local communities. A total of €6.6 million was raised for research, charity and sustainability projects in holiday destinations, particularly via the realigned TUI Care Foundation.

“For many people in the world tourism is the key to a more prosperous life. As the leading tourism group worldwide it is our responsibility to strengthen the positive effects of tourism. Our sustainability strategy ‘Better Holidays, Better World’ underlines this requirement. The results in the current progress report are very encouraging and show that the strategy is lived and promoted on all levels of the company”, says Fritz Joussen, Chief Executive of TUI Group.

Sustainability is increasingly important to TUI customers as is shown in a recent study conducted by TUI Group with over 3,000 participants in Europe. The research shows that sustainability can be a deciding factor in holiday choices and that customers want more information and more choice when it comes to booking.

“With 6.3 million ’greener and fairer’ holidays in 2016 sustainable travel is on track to going mainstream. However, there is still ground to cover to meet our 2020 commitments. With its sustainability strategy ‘Better Holidays, Better World’ TUI has created the right framework to play a leading role for better environmental and social standards in travel destinations. The TUI Care Foundation supports educational and environmental projects in holiday destinations all over the world”, says Thomas Ellerbeck, Member of the Group Executive Committee of TUI Group and responsible for the sustainability strategy.

Through the TUI Care Foundation, TUI Group is focusing its diverse activities to bring about positive change in holiday destinations. It was realigned in 2016 as the progress report illustrates around three funding priorities: education opportunities and chances for young people, the conservation of the natural living environment and the support of the local population for prosperous holiday destinations. Thereby, TUI Care Foundation delivers the very best that tourism has to offer in the places where it counts most.

A new inclusion in the strategy and the progress report is the area Human Resources. As a company with 67,000 employees issues around employee engagement, diversity and employee development are central to the long term success of TUI Group. We report on this in our publication under the heading ‘Care More’. The results of the global employee survey “TUIgether” revealed that the company’s commitment for sustainable tourism is seen as very important by employees.

“TUI has worked hard over many years to develop more sustainable holiday offerings. Recent customer research shows that our customers are developing growing awareness for sustainability. They value more sustainable travel as it enhances the authenticity of their holiday experiences and at the same time improves the benefit to host communities”, says Jane Ashton, Director Sustainable Development at TUI Group.

TUI Group launched its sustainability strategy ‘Better Holidays, Better World 2015-2020’ in 2015. It targets among other things to offer ten million ’greener and fairer’ holidays annually from 2020. Moreover, TUI aims to operate Europe’s most carbon-efficient airlines and reduce the CO₂ intensity of business operations by 10%. With the support of TUI Care Foundation the annual funding for non-profit projects should rise to ten million Euros per year by 2020.

Sustainable achievements – Highlights from the 2016 progress report

TUI fly Germany and Thomson Airways ranked #1 and #2 most efficient charter airlines in the 2016 global atmosfair index

€67 million saved through environmental efficiencies since 2012

TUI airlines continue to be up to 30% more efficient than the industry norm

4.1% reduction in CO2 emissions per cruise passenger night compared with 2015

6.3 million ’greener and fairer’ holidays (in hotels with a sustainability certification)

846,000 excursions in the TUI Collection programme that demonstrably benefit the local population and comply with sustainability criteria

77% of TUI Group owned Hotels had sustainability certifications

1,170 hotels certified to a Global Sustainable Tourism Council recognised certification standard

€6.6 million raised for projects for sustainable tourism (+22% year- on-year)

Employee engagement score of 77 in the group (+4 points compared to 2015)

18.8% of employees at TUI Group work part time

Women in 29.4% of managerial positions

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