Intrepid is absolutely thrilled to be awarded the Global Tourism Business Award for the 2011 Tourism for Tomorrow awards and delighted to receive this recognition.
When Darrell Wade and Geoff Manchester started Intrepid in 1989, it was of the utmost importance to them that local people would benefit from Intrepid travellers visiting their communities. This philosophy continues to play a pivotal role in our responsible travel policy and 22 years on we are still able to engage local people in our operations and ‘do the right thing’ by them and our travellers.
As Geoff Manchester rightly points out, this is a group effort. “Over the years Intrepid has attracted wonderful staff who share our values and commitment. This award acknowledges all our staff and also recognises our extraordinary hosts, the locals of the countries we visit. Their hospitality and the lessons they have taught us, have helped us deliver great travel experiences. The award also commends the growing community of Intrepid travellers – around 40% of whom tell us that our responsible travel approach is one of the top 3 reasons they choose to travel with us.”
Knowing that the travel industry is the fastest growing contributor of carbon emissions – 5 years ago Intrepid chose to tackle the problem head-on. We set a goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2010 and set into play a comprehensive carbon management plan looking across all our operations – our offices, trips and flights – and through management processes and offsetting we were proud to achieve this goal late last year. Moving forward this will continue to be a very important part of how we do business.
The other major area that we continue to focus on is our everyday responsible travel practices – what happens on our trips and in and around the communities where we operate – how we implement practices that respect local people, their natural environment and wildlife and their economies. Also our support for local priorities through our philanthropic initiative, The Intrepid Foundation – which is now assisting more than 50 NGOs around the globe and has distributed more than $2.2m in the last 8 years. We are very grateful to the many wonderful organisations that we partner with who help bring us their expertise and support.
Intrepid is very excited and most honoured to receive this prestigious award – and this recognition brings added energy to our drive for best practise in sustainable tourism!