What does ‘Responsible Tourism’ mean?
The term ‘responsible tourism’ was actually defined in Cape Town in 2002 at a World Summit on Sustainable Development. It was defined as being about ‘making better places for people to live in and better places for people to visit’ – in that order. We particularly like the word ‘responsible’ as we believe it perfectly conveys the message that in order to be responsible, someone has to take responsibility. Whether that’s a government, business…tourism provider or tourist, we believe it’s the absolute best way to ensure things get done!
How are Scandinavia Only responsible?
As a company we only work with local suppliers in all the destinations we feature. Many of these small companies are family-owned and managed – some 2nd and 3rd generation – and the contribution their businesses make to their local economy cannot be underestimated. The populations of the individual Scandinavian countries are a fraction of the population of the UK, with most countries also being considerably larger, and tourism activities provide an income for many local people who live in more remote regions. Tourism has provided an enticing occupation possibility for a younger generation and is helping to reduce the number being lured away by larger towns and cities offering better or more preferable employment opportunities.
As a company we do not offer large scale, mass tourism; we do not charter planes, own hotels or send our own staff to work as guides or instructors. We are proud to work with local companies and individuals who are not only the very best in their field, but also the most responsible, providing a very high standard of service and customer experience. They are, without doubt, the backbone of our business.
As a tourism company we are never going to be able to say that we are an eco-company as our holidays include flights, and sometimes car hire, and like any company we want to grow the number of people who travel with us. However, we are committed to doing our best to support local communities and protect the environment. At Scandinavia Only we are a bunch of nature loving, animal adoring, culture-vulture, environmentally aware, outdoor enthusiasts who continually strive to be the best we can be, as a company and as individuals. We practice, however we do not preach.
The Nordics and Responsible Tourism
We are fortunate to work with destinations who are way ahead of the UK when it comes to protecting the environment. Environmental issues are intrinsic in Nordic politics and policy and their eco culture is now so ingrained in everyday life, that being ‘environmental’ is not so much an ethical choice, as the only choice. All our suppliers have strong environmental policies and we are happy to supply these on request.