Globe Travel Centre

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Globe Travel Centre is a specialist tour operator offering personalised, tailor made, sustainable and meaningful holidays to experiential travellers. The company currently offers holidays to destinations including Kerala, India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia with new destinations being added shortly.
Member since: 22 Aug 2019

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

Economic responsibility

We want each of the holidays we sell to have a direct and tangible impact on the destinations and local people. Unlike other companies, for us, this policy starts with the employment of local people as our travel experts. Not only are the drivers, guides and other resources engaged with the tours local people, but also the travel consultants we employ are locals who have extensive knowledge of the region.

We are the only tour operator to have such a business model. This helps us not only to provide benefits to locals but also to offer the best possible expertise to our clients. Globe Travel Centre also donates to a tangible cause every time a client books a holiday with us. These causes include the education of children for a year, buying bicycles to help school children commute and other such measures.

Our tours always include suggestions for local experiences that benefit the communities. This includes culinary experiences (most of which are at homestays) which not only supports our ethos of sustainable travel but also encourages local sourcing.

As far as possible we try to support local businesses at the destinations, whether be it sourcing sourcing upcyled bags or hand made gifts made by locals that we supply to clients here or buying plants locally for our tree plantation drives.

We also have a preferred list of accommodation providers that we choose based on their sustainability practices. The resorts we use employ local communities, and buy local produce.

We strongly discourage the practice of drivers taking clients to carpet and other such shops which tend to be a nuisance for them. Instead we recommend local suppliers who make hand made products, should a client be interested in these.

We work with 'Rasoi on Wheels' in Delhi who are a charity that feed homeless and school children. Our group tours to Delhi translate to 100 children being fed per traveller. On a group of 10, this means 1000 children being fed.

We also work with 'Maher' who are an organisation in Pune, Maharashtra, who give shelter to abandoned children, women and the elderly.
A few years back we organised a party for 50 children from Maher at the local Macdonalds (A visit to Macdonalds would have been a mundane and unremarkable event for most of us, but it was just so enlightening to see how much joy the event brought to the children at Maher)

In Kerala, we work with local government schools and identify children from economically strained backgrounds and connect our donations in a tangible way to support them. We donate a bicycle to a needy child when a client travels with us- and we give clients the option of donating the bike themselves. For example with a group tour we did for children from the International Drama Academy, UK we got every child to donate a bicycle to one child at the school. This was a very rewarding experience for the young children who travelled and fulfilled our ethos of making travel meaningful. (The experience made such a deep imapct on the children who travelled on this trip, that they now travel every single year with us to various destinations where they can engage in similar activities. In Sri Lanka the group donated footballs and football gears to children.)

We have also started working with organisations like Wildlife SOS in India who work towards protecting elephants and bears. One of our tours includes spending two days with Wildlife SOS giving travellers the opportunity to care for elephants and make porridge for the bears :-)

Environmental responsibility

Globe Travel Centre is a very environmentally focussed company. We are very conscious of the negative footprint travel businesses have on the environment. We genuinely believe that this message needs to be understood by all the stake holders including our team members, suppliers, and even our clients. We offer our client’s their travel documentation in bags made from upcycled tyre tubes. For every client who travels with us, we plant a tree at the destination and also offer the clients a ‘Tree Certificate’. We are also actively involved in beach cleaning and other activities that help sustain the local environments. We are currently working closely with our hotel supplier partners to assess how best we can reduce the use of single use plastic.

As far as possible we use hotels that are eco-friendly. As a company who feels the need to offer good quality content to our clients, we do develop brochures, but care is taken to use recycled/ recyclable paper for these.

Our correspondence to travellers includes gentle suggestions to minimise damage to the environment. We also communicate that instead of buying carbon offsets as a measure to minimise damage to the environment, we tend to plant a tree every time a client travels.

We have been experimenting with providing reusable bottles to clients with a view to minimise the use of plastic. However, we found that this was a practical problem. Especially when you are travelling in Asia, despite being well-intentioned clients are vary of refilling water when travelling. To address this we are now talking to accommodation providers to see if they will provide a refilling station at the resort itself. Again, we choose accommodation partners who have a very strong environmental policy and advertise this abundantly at the resorts.

In the past we were actively engaged in beach cleaning and other projects in Kerala. During this time, we would encourage clients to visit the sites. At this present moment we are not actively suggesting any such places but will endeavour to include more of these.

Indeed, as far as possible, staff are encouraged to walk or cycle to work. We also developed our own range of upcyled bags made up of tyre inner tubes and leather cuts thrown by factories. These items would normally have gone into a landfill but are now combined to produce a range of stylish bags. We provide some of these bags to select travellers.

Social responsibility

As mentioned earlier in this document, the company engages local travel experts for each of its destinations.

Local travel experts tend to know the regions and its many nuances and are able to include a number of off ‘non touristy’ experiences with a focus on highlighting the art, culture, cuisine and norms of each destination. An example of this would be in India where instead of taking clients to larger touristy auditoriums where performances are held, we encourage travellers to visit the homes of local folk artists and engage with them. We also include visits to projects we support.

We ensure that travellers are provided with accurate pre-trip information on the social and political situation in each destination

We ensure that travellers are provided with suggestions of ways to minimise negative impacts on local cultures

A local guide always accompanies all group visits to local communities

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