On The Go Tours / Sustainable Travel

The future is green

Elephants at Udawalawe

Responsible Travel and Animal Welfare

In recent months we have considered our responsible travel charter and the welfare of elephants in Thailand, India and Sri Lanka. For many years we have supported local businesses that rely on elephants held in captivity to generate income. Although we have always engaged with locally accredited operators bound to particular standards of animal welfare, after feedback from our customers we have made the decision to remove certain elements from our tours:

  • Effective from 01 September we will no longer be including Taweechai Elephant Camp in Thailand
  • Effective from 01 October we will no longer be including elephant rides at Amber Fort in Jaipur, India, or elephant safaris at national parks in India or Nepal
  • Effective from 01 October we will no longer be including the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage in Sri Lanka

We are a significant supplier of business to these areas and strongly believe that in order to minimize any unnecessary suffering that these elephants may experience due to a lack of income for the businesses that own them, a gradual and sustainable withdrawal is required. As larger tour operators have pulled out of these practices overnight we have seen many elephants go hungry as their owners no longer make enough money to feed them and have not had the time to invest in other sources of income.

Over the next few months we will be working closely with the local communities we support to explore new income revenues and ensure these animals are well-looked after. The elephant rides and camp visits mentioned above will be replaced with free time and changed to an optional activity - this means passengers who still wish to experience close interaction with these beautiful creatures will still have that option and the local communities will still be able to make a living that will go towards the care of the elephants.

A sustainable approach to travel

Supporting local communities

Tourism is one of the most important and largest industries in the global economy and employs more people worldwide than any other. For those of us privileged enough to travel, we take on a responsibility to aid people relying on tourism for their daily needs and to treat their home and country with respect. We believe travel should be a rewarding experience for you, as well as for the people we meet in the countries we visit and that preserving the natural state and beauty of the areas we pass through is essential.

We care about the countries we visit and give back to their communities with donations to local schools and charities, employing only local guides, dining in local eateries and staying in locally owned hotels wherever possible. When travelling with us, on average over 70% (*)of your holiday funds remain within the local economies and we are proud to say that this approach has led to very successful and close partnerships around the world.

(*) We based this figure on the total cost of your holiday excluding international flights. We include the price of your tour, any local payment element, entrance fees, tipping kitties and an approximate daily spending budget for food. For the most part, on our tours, whatever you spend in the country you visit goes back directly to the local communities.

Change-for-Children

Change for Children

A few Rupees or Yuan, it all adds up. On The Go provide passengers with an envelope to donate their unwanted local currency, to our Change for Children initiative in India and China. This money is put to good use, purchasing clothes, educational supplies and other much needed items for underprivileged children.

One project the funds have contributed towards is building a second toilet block in the Abhaneri Primary School for the girl students. Previously the one toilet block was used by both the boy and girl students and this new separate toilet will have a positive impact on the children’s educational experience. Following the country’s new approach towards Clean India, we are incredibly proud to be part of this project.

TCD-Trust

TCD Trust

The Tourist Community Development Trust - TCD Trust - is a non-profit trust set up in South Africa which consolidates the fundraising and social investment efforts of companies within the South African tourism industry. Playing a leading role in community involvement, TCD trust works on range of sustainable projects. For every one of our passengers travelling to South Africa, On The Go makes a donation to the trust. Read more ...

CWWGC

Commonwealth War Graves

Over 1,700,000 men and women of the Commonwealth forces died during the First and Second World War. Today, the tireless effort of marking and maintaining graves and building memorials dedicated to those whose lives were lost is carried out by The Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

In recognition of the effort they have undertaken at memorials as far as Vladivostok in Russia, Gallipoli in Turkey and El Alamein in Egypt, On The Go is proud to make donations to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. For further information visit their website at: www.cwgc.org.

TOFT

Travel Operators for Tigers

On The Go Tours are members of Travel Operators for Tigers - TOFT - pledging a contribution for each of our clients that travel on a wildlife tour in India with us. Travel Operators for Tigers campaign is aimed at those within the nature travel industry and all visitors to India’s wildlife parks, advocating and supporting a more responsible use of national parks and tiger reserves, in order to save the forests of India and its tigers. Read more ...

AITO

Sustainable Tourism Charter

As members of AITO we recognise that in carrying out our work as a tour operator we have a social and environmental responsibility to respect other people's places and ways of life and therefore recognise the following common responsibilities to:

Protect the environment

• its flora, fauna and landscapes

Respect local cultures

• traditions, religions and built heritage

Benefit local communities

• both economically and socially

Conserve natural resources

• from office to destination

Minimise pollution

• through noise, waste disposal and congestion

All tourism potentially has an Environmental, Social and Economic impact on the destination involved and we aim to be sustainable in all our dealings on all three levels by; Establishing our own policies and involving our staff; Informing our clients about Sustainable Tourism and, where appropriate; Encouraging in destination participation; Working with our suppliers and partners to achieve sustainable goals and practices; Publicising good practice to encourage and spread Sustainable Tourism.

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