Off The Map Tours are a family-run company who have been organizing cultural adventure tours in Mongolia for the past 10 years. We specialize in mountain biking tours and our guides for these trips are former professional cyclists. The company founder was coach for Mongolia’s Olympic cycle road racing team from 1964 to 1990. We also do hiking, horse riding and most recently motorcycle tours. Most of our trips are for small groups of up to 12 people, although we also manage larger groups for charity challenge events.
Member since: 29 Feb 2008
How the minimum criteria of the responsible travel standard was met...
- Income from the business benefits only people in Mongolia. All accommodation utilized, both hotel and ger camps, are owned by Mongolian people / companies.
- During the short tourist season (June to September) permanent staff are given a salary that is equivalent to an annual salary for a person with their qualifications. Temporary staff such as local guides and horsemen are paid a fair wage and provided with the same food and accommodation as regular staff.
- Tourists are encouraged to purchase souvenirs (Mongolian handicrafts) that are made by local people in the places we visit, thus supporting the local economy. Where possible we include in itineraries visits to projects of interest to tourists which have been set up to create employment for local people. For example, when passing through Tsetserleg town we see a felt making project.
- Rubbish is carried with us until we reach a town or village which has proper facilities for rubbish disposal.
- Clients are instructed before arrival in Mongolia of the requirement for biodegradable soap, shampoo, etc. for camping tours because washing is often in rivers. At most of the ger camps where we stay hot water showers are provided and water is heated using solar power.
- Clients are only allowed to light camp fires when permission has been given by local people to use windfall. On camping tours a pit latrine (with toilet tent) is made at each site. Before departing, used paper is burned and the pit closed.
- During the tour, the leader or interpreter will educate the group on the more important points of Mongolian etiquette so that everyone feels more comfortable when we enter a local home or temple.
- We do not take advantage of the need of financially poor nomadic people to make money by inconveniencing them unnecessarily. We put our tents beside a nomadic family’s ger rather than clients sleeping in a family ger and displacing family members.
- Staff are treated fairly. They are provided with good quality, well maintained equipment and appropriate clothing. Staff are given good and safe working conditions with quality tools and equipment. The health of our staff is a high priority and the company assists with medical costs when appropriate.