Tourism expert creates toolkit for South Africa
The toolkit, called Keep It Real South Africa, has been modelled on existing toolkits under license from VisitEngland, developed for England, Wales and Ireland. It is set to be launched on Saturday 10 May during the Networking Event hosted by Fair Trade Tourism at INDABA 2014, Africa's largest tourism marketing event.
FTT is a non-profit organisation that promotes responsible tourism in southern Africa and beyond. The company offers a Fair Trade Tourism certification programme which signifies that a business is committed fair and responsible tourism. This includes fair wages and working conditions, fair purchasing and operations, equitable distribution of benefits and respect for human rights, culture and the environment.
Many responsible tourism businesses underestimate how hard it is to communication successfully their responsible attributes and often miss opportunities to make what they do relevant to guests.
The Keep It Real South Africa toolkit is broken down into easy-to-follow sections including: who, why, what, where and when to communicate messages. It also includes responsible tourism communication case studies from FTT-certified businesses such as accommodation, activity providers, visitor attractions and a tour operator.
Dr Xavier Font at Leeds Metropolitan University commented: "I am very excited to find such excellent sustainability practices in South Africa, and to look for ways to help them learn how to better communicate sustainability to customers. The potential is enormous to convert sustainability into a meaningful customer experience, if we learn how to market it."
Says Kathy Bergs, General Manager at FTT, added: "FTT is excited about the opportunity that this toolkit provides FTT-certified businesses to more effectively communicate the amazing work they are doing in operating their businesses ethically and in a socially and environmentally responsible manner."
The toolkit can be downloaded here:http://www.fairtrade.travel/content/page/keep-it-real-toolkit