It has been a great week for Wilderness Scotland as we found out that we were a Thistle Award Finalist and that we have also been nominated in the ‘World’s Leading Green Tour Operator’ category at the prestigious World Travel Awards.
Hailed by the Wall Street Journal as the “Oscars of the travel industry”, the World Travel Awards are the most comprehensive and prestigious awards in the global travel industry. Having won this award in 2007 and been a finalist in 2008, we have shown that our green credentials are on a par with the best in the world – and we are hoping for another win this year.
The winners of the World Travel Awards are chosen on the basis of votes cast by the travel industry and the winners will be announced on 8 November at the World & Travel Technology Gala Ceremony in London. Stevie Christie commented: “We are extremely proud to be nominated for this award which highlights our commitment to sustainable tourism. Ultimately, we hope that our success will encourage other businesses to protect and preserve the natural environment and help pave the way for Scotland to achieve its goal of becoming the most sustainable tourism destination in Europe by 2015”.
Since winning the award in 2007, we have continued to develop our sustainability policies and operations. In 2009, we introduced a Conservation Contribution Scheme, encouraging clients to make a voluntary donation to one of our selected environmental charities on booking a trip – any donations are then matched by us. This scheme has proved a great success with over 90% of clients choosing to make a voluntary donation. Such innovation contributed to us becoming the first Scottish company to gain a 5-star Responsible Tourism Award from the Association of Independent Tour Operators (AITO) earlier this year.