Footsteps Indochina Travel

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Footsteps Indochina Travel is a young dynamic tour operator who strives to provide authentic, luxurious and responsible travel services in Indochina. We work hard to create innovative tailor-made and soft-adventure itineraries for small groups journeys and independent travelers through out Indochina. Our people are attentive to your needs and try to deliver more than what travelers may expect. Personal touch is what we always add to make tourists' stay in Indochina a truly memorable time.
Member since: 07 Nov 2016

How the minimum criteria of the responsible travel standard was met...

Economic responsibility

When we started the company, we think about the local people and the environment that's we wish to help to improve local people life. We support local community group in the south of Vietnam, and provide notebook, clothes for poor children in Mekong Delta twice for every year.
We use local guides as we really want to support their life. Make their job more interesting and loves their place. We all use local restaurant, boat, homestay, etc

Environmental responsibility

We don't want our presence in Asia to add to the problem of excessive pollution in Asia and need to minimise our impact on the places by practising waste minimisation initiatives whilst on holiday.

We always advise to our tourists:

Try not to use plastic covered or wrapped foods when fresh options are available. The disposal of plastics and styrofoam is a major problem in Asia, take their own bags with them when shopping - "say no to plastic". When away from towns or cities don't leave any rubbish that you take in with you. Tampons and sanitary pads should be taken out of the area and disposed of appropriately.

Energy and water conservation
Be prudent with fuel and water. Pollution, green house gases and other problems of fossil fuel use are escalating as developing countries strive towards having modern Western appliances, vehicles and production methods. For example turn off the air-con/lights in the room when it's vacant, leave the air con on 'fan only' overnight. Use public transport where possible.

Environmental degradation
On treks, use existing tracks and stay on it rather than creating new tracks (especially in wet season) as this results in a series of footpaths that turn into erosion gullies. When snorkeling, don't touch coral formations as this can hinder their growth. Stick with the "Take only photos, leave only footprints" adage but then with sensitivity with the photos and footprints!

When visiting National Parks or reserves where you will be in contact with wildlife, please ensure that you follow the appropriate Park Regulations that ensure that wildlife is protected. Respect this even if you observe that other tourists don't and don't respond to local rangers offering to bend the rules for you.

Social responsibility

The annual Charity Program to Mekong Delta and local school. Each summer we organize a trip to Mekong Delta, repair house, given food, notebook, and clothes for local people and pupil.
Child prostitution or sex tourism is an abhorrent and illegal act that we strongly condemn. Any incidences of this will be reported to local and international authorities who will ensure that the person involved will be questioned, and if appropriate, charged.

Donations and gift giving
This is a difficult issue for many travelers who want to assist the local communities but are unaware of the larger implications. There are many ways in which you can have a positive input into the communities that you visit:

• Appropriate donations
Make a donation through Footsteps Indochina Travel to one of the local projects and charities it supports. We collect clothing, first aid items and ensure they go directly to the requested charity or project. We integrate social projects such as "Seeing Hands" blind massage and visits to street kids shelters in our tours to help our guests better understand the social problems of the country they travel and supporting the projects at the same time.

• Beggars
Do not give to begging children as it encourages them to make a living this way. You may wish to give to the elderly or disabled as there is no social security or way these people can earn money.

• Ways not to give!
Giving money and goods away at random to individuals accentuates an unequal relationship between locals and visitors, with tourists being seen as purely 'money givers'. Do not pay for acts of kindness in monetary terms (eg. paying kids for photographs) this encourages the development of a society that equates every human action as a potential money making scheme.

Do not give sweets to children in the villages that we visit. Local people do not have access to dentists and there is the issue of turning children into beggars. Pens, toothbrushes, clothing are best distributed via a local charity, school teacher, or community leader.

Avoid feeling that you necessarily have to give 'material' things, giving something of your friendship, time and interest to interact like a smile, a joke, a sing-song, dance or playing a game - this can be the best gift of all.

Our next project is “one tour for one meal”. We offer local street food, and transfer by motorbike. Our aim to help students can find a part-time job. They can earn and share studying cost. Beside, we want to share 1 dollars (estimate one lunch for student, poor people, or in the hospital). This project we call "one tour for one meal". We will run this project for next year 2017.

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