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World Responsible Tourism Awards


People’s Choice in Responsible Tourism Award: World Animal Protection


In association with National Geographic Traveller (UK) magazine Sponsored by Catalan Tourist Board Past winners have proven themselves to be industry leaders, but this category aims to discover which of them the general public finds the most inspiring. Voting took place via National Geographic Traveller (UK)magazine and almost 6,000 votes were received from the public, who were asked to pick a favourite from last year’s winners. World Animal Protection won with 1,536 votes in total.


Winner’s background A UK-based charity with a global reach, World Animal Protection campaigns for animal welfare and, through its Compassionate Travel campaign, against the use of animals in tourism. Previously known as the World Society for the Protection of Animals, it has campaigned at government, UN and business levels since 1964.


Overall winner for 2015: LooLa


What they do World Animal Protection’s Compassionate Travel campaign is focused on ending the exploitation of wild animals in tourism, including elephant rides, animal circuses, zoos, bullfights and “swim with dolphin” programmes. With plans to go global, it has focused its work in Australia and The Netherlands, collaborating with, in particular, Intrepid Travel as a leading partner. As a result, 15 Dutch operators, including Tui


Netherlands, have stopped elephant rides and visits to elephant shows on all their trips. World Animal Protection also


works to educate consumers, with an international campaign reaching 1.5 million people, 50,000 of whom committed never to taking an elephant ride or watch elephants perform in a show. They also have an informative and free-to-download animal-friendly holiday guide on their website.


Judges’ comments The judges look for examples which are surprising and inspiring. LooLa is based on the principle that a good business can and should benefit all other stakeholders too: local community, staff, and clients. The judges singled LooLa out because of its innovative approach, based on the Dutch “polder principle” – that all stakeholders should benefit – and because it has proved that it works. LooLa sells a package in Singapore that includes accommodation, activities and food, but the staff operate their own shop and sell drinks, extra menus, massages and so on. Each department runs its own budgets, and staff keep surpluses as long as guests are satisfied. These initiatives result in a 20-50 % increase in local staff incomes and guests are encouraged to pay a bit extra to participate in community projects.


More space. More service. More than happy.


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