Edible Business Cards

Peru’s Kokopelli hostel has developed an edible business card that counteracts the effects of altitude sickness. Located in Cusco, near the Andes mountain range, the hostel caters for many hikers and climbers who stop at the venue before heading to higher altitudes. The hostel gives each visitor a business card that contains an edible remedy for altitude sickness inspired by ancient Peruvian techniques. Designed by New York-based Lanfranco & Cordova, the card features a leaf imprint made of coca leaf that can be removed and chewed leaving the hostel’s details intact.

Further information: http://www.hostelkokopelli.com/



Sustainable Hotel Rooms

BookDifferent.com is aiming to make travel both sustainable and social by including eco-labels as criteria that can be selected like Wi-Fi, hotel facilities or town district. The not-for-profit foundation has teamed up with some of the top eco-labels focusing on the leisure and tourism industry including Green Tourism, Travelife, Green Key, Green Globe, and Nordic Swan to offer 5,800 hotels.  BookDifferent.com donates 50% its earnings of every booked hotel room to more than 80 charity organisations and their projects including WWF, Amnesty International, AWI, Greenpeace, GoodPlanet and Unicef.

Further information: http://www.bookdifferent.com/en/



Destinations for Tomorrow

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, in partnership with Sustainable Travel International, has created an online toolkit designed to guide a destination’s journey towards sustainability including developing an action plan and setting up a monitoring system. The ‘Destinations for Tomorrow’ website is an educational platform targeted at coastal port destinations to provide the resources they can use to start their sustainability journey.

Further information: http://destinationsfortomorrow.org/

Flight Compensation


A company in the US is making getting a refund for delayed or cancelled flights easier for holidaymakers. Users simply enter in the details of any flight they purchased in the last three years that was delayed, cancelled or rearranged. AirHelp then does all of the administration work involved in getting a payment from airlines or initiates legal proceedings. When the airline pays, the money is transferred direct to the user's bank account minus a 25% fee.

Further information: http://www.getairhelp.com/us


National Park Film

Brand USA has announced a new marketing initiative, in partnership with MacGillivray Freeman Films, to promote America as a top travel destination via the giant screens of IMAX and other theatres. Due for release in 2015 to coincide with the National Park Service’s centennial anniversary the film will showcase U.S. National Parks, capturing the diversity of experiences available in America’s great outdoors to inspire travellers to discover their beauty. With over 800 IMAX and giant screen theatres in more than 57 countries, the campaign aims to reach a large number of key international markets in showcasing the National Parks of America.

Further information: http://au.discoveramerica.com/


Green Guardians

Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service provides sustainable voluntourism experiences in Tasmania’s national parks and reserves for tourists on commercially operated guided trips. The Green Guardians is a joint program between Tasmanian commercial operators, the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service, Tourism Tasmania, Birdlife Tasmania and Save the Tasmanian Devil Program. Projects are chosen by Parks and Wildlife Service rangers and staff to make a tangible difference to the conservation work carried out in the reserve.

Further information: http://www.parks.tas.gov.au/index.aspx?base=24210



Spa & Wellness Country

Victoria’s key spa and wellbeing experiences are the centrepiece of a new $500,000 tourism campaign targeting women over the age of 35. The interstate tourism marketing campaign is part of a long-term strategy to take advantage of Victoria’s abundance of naturally occurring mineral springs and geothermal water around Daylesford and the Mornington Peninsula. The multifaceted integrated print and online campaign using national lifestyle magazines aims to raise awareness in key interstate markets until June 2014.

Further information: http://www.visitvictoria.com/spa




A research team from the University of Michigan and Yale University has released a free jetlag conquering smart phone application. Two mathematicians have discovered a solution to the problem of ‘entrainment’ where the body’s internal clock cannot synchronise with the outside hour. The ‘Entrain’ application helps users to beat jet lag by choosing their destination, preferred sleep and wake times and when they want to start adjusting to the destination.

Further information: http://entrain.math.lsa.umich.edu/


Beach Map


A new website has been launched that has a singular global focus on beachfront hotels across the planet. The Beachfront Club assists beach-lovers around the world quickly identifying over 8,000 beachfront hotels on its maps including Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar, Philippines, Malaysia, Bali and later regions in the Caribbean and Mediterranean. Users can book hotels through the site using online booking engines including Agoda, Expedia and Priceline. 

Further information: http://www.thebeachfrontclub.com/



Anti-Trafficking Tourism Campaign

The tourism industry is supporting a new anti-trafficking initiative launched by the World Tourism Organization, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. The ‘Your Actions Count: Be A Responsible Traveller’ campaign aims to raise awareness amongst tourists on a range of trafficking issues and crimes. The campaign focuses on five different kinds of trafficking: human, wild animals and plants, cultural objects, drugs and counterfeit. Marriott and Sabre will use a broad range of media to reach customers with campaign messages including internal and external websites, newsletters, blogs, social media and emails.

Further information: http://www.bearesponsibletraveller.org/


Nature-Based Tourism Report


The Tourism and Transport Forum have released a snapshot of the value and performance of the nature-based tourism sector in 2012-13. The visitor data reveals that more than two thirds of all international visitors took part in some type of nature-based activity, making nature-based tourism particularly important for Australian tourism's inbound sector. International markets with a high propensity for nature tourism include Germany, the Netherlands, Korea, France, Italy, Scandinavia, Taiwan, China, UK, Canada, Japan and the USA.

Further information: http://www.ttf.org.au/Content/ttfstatsnaturalreport.aspx

Environmentally Conscious Travellers

A new study has revealed that European travellers into Australia are more likely to support voluntary carbon offsetting measures than their Asian counterparts. Collaborative research involving the Griffith Institute for Tourism and Tourism Research Australia suggests more knowledge about Asian attitudes towards sustainability is required to optimise support for voluntary carbon offsetting practices among this most crucial inbound market sector. The research based on data collected between 2008 and 2010 also provides key demographic characteristics and travel trends of those people more likely to make voluntary payments to offset their carbon emissions.

Further information: http://app.griffith.edu.au/news/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/A4-Final-Version-Carbon-Offset-Infographic-med.jpg



Tourism for Tomorrow Awards

The 2014 World Travel & Tourism Council’s Tourism for Tomorrow Award winners were announced at the recent World Travel and Tourism Council Global Summit in Hainan, China. The awards showcase world-leading sustainable tourism businesses and destinations around the world that are successfully balancing their obligations to their people, the planet and their profits. There are six categories including destination, environment, community, business, people and innovation. More than 20 international experts representing the private sector, academic institutions, non-profit organisations, and governments, come together as independent judges to select the finalists and winners.

Further information: http://www.wttc.org/tourismfortomorrow/


Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Awards

The 2014 Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Awards are now open for entries. Established in 2006, the awards identify leaders in socially and environmentally responsible tourism with criteria based on the international standards of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council. The awards provide an opportunity for businesses and organisations of all shapes and sizes, with categories available for accommodation providers, tour operators and initiatives. Applications close 23rd May 2014.

Further information: http://tourism.wildasia.org/responsible-tourism-awards/



Destination Perth Strategy

Tourism Council Western Australia has released its Destination Perth strategy that aims to increase the value of tourism expenditure in Perth to $7.1 billion by 2020. The report is in line with the State Government Strategy for Tourism in Western Australia that will see the value of tourism across the state increase to $12 billion by 2020.

Further information: http://www.tourismcouncilwa.com.au/wp-content/uploads/Destination-Perth_March-2013-Final.pdf



Regional Platforms

Inland NSW has been awarded more than $800,000 over two years under the NSW Government's Regional Visitor Economy Fund for the development of a digital platform to improve the online experience of visitors and promote a range of cross regional campaigns including VFR, food and wine, nature, history and heritage, arts and culture. The Regional Visitor Economy Fund is managed and administered by Destination NSW with matched funding by partner organisations.

Further information: http://www.destinationnsw.com.au/tourism/business-development-resources/funding-and-grants/regional-visitor-economy-fund-rvef






Student Ambassadors

The Brisbane International Student Ambassadors for 2014 have been announced and include 36 ambassadors from 34 countries. They were chosen from a record number of almost 250 applicants and include students from some of Brisbane’s largest source markets including China, India, South Korea, Brazil, Malaysia, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Japan and Colombia. The program was established by Study Brisbane in 2009 and is open to both domestic and international students.

Further information: http://www.studybrisbane.com.au



Green Tourism Certification Guide

A new edition of the 'Guide through the Label Jungle' has been launched by Ecotrans, Friends of Nature International, Working Group on Tourism and Development, Church Development Service and Tourism Watch. The guide assists in understanding the functioning of certification programs, their verification procedure, transparency and coverage of sustainability issues. It was created to help all tourism stakeholders including tourists to get familiar with over 50 labels and 150 certificates in tourism worldwide.

Further information: http://www.tourism-watch.de/en/content/guide-through-tourism-label-jungle



Blue Penguin Mascot

The EarthCheck benchmarking and certification program is celebrating World Environment Day by running a competition to name a blue penguin from the Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony in New Zealand's South Island. The blue penguin is the world's smallest penguin and the 'name our mascot' winner will be announced on World Environment Day on 5 June 2014.

Further information: http://www.earthcheck.org/mascot




DestinationQ Forum

The Sunshine Coast will take centre stage when Queensland’s tourism industry comes together for the third annual DestinationQ Forum on 16 to 17 September. The event will be held jointly at the Sheraton Noosa Resort and Spa and the Outrigger Little Hastings Street Resort and Spa.

Further information: http://www.destq.com.au/home/annual-forums


Sustainable Economic Growth for Regional Australia (SEGRA) 2014 Conference

The 2014 Sustainable Economic Growth for Regional Australia (SEGRA) conference will be held from 8 - 10 October in Alice Springs.

Recognised as the nation's most credible and influential voice on issues affecting regional Australia, SEGRA provides a forum for local business, government, regional practioners and researchers from across Australia to collaborate on the different challenges and practices and advance practical strategies in remote regions.

This year the theme is Connecting Matters and discussions will be on the future opportunities for regional prosperity. The program will feature a workshop on the emerging Geotourism industry and development potential in regional Australia.

Keep regional Australia on the agenda by being part of this year's conference. Register now!

Further information: http://www.segra.com.au/


World Destinations Summit

The first-ever World Summit on ‘Destinations for All’ will be taking place in Montreal, Canada from 19 to 22 October 2014. The summit will bring together practitioners and researchers from around the world to exchange experiences and discuss issues concerning the inclusion of people with disabilities and to chart a course for the development of inclusive and sustainable tourism.

Further information: 


Further information:



Jungle lodge Alang Sedayu

By Marzieh Fallah, Malaysian Correspondent

Jungle Lodge Alang Sedayu, a Malay style house built in 1991, is located in Ulu Gombak, Selangor, about 30 minutes out of Kuala Lumpur. It is one of the pioneers of ecotourism lodges in Malaysia.

Over the years, it has provided many exciting, eco-friendly and safe programs and activities such as camping, night walking, bird watching and abseiling for families, companies and training groups.

In addition, there are some Training and Development Programs like jungle survival courses with Orang Asli (Aboriginal people) which include traditional bamboo cooking techniques. Guests learn the art of fire-starting using wax, twigs and wood shavings, and making handicraft.

There are seasonal programs specifically dedicated to children and teenagers. These activities help them learn team-working and leadership skills. Moreover, it provides accommodation with a variety of facilities.

Jungle lodge Alang Sedayu is a great example of a private ecotourism business that focuses on minimising impacts, environmental awareness and economic profits.





Kenya’s President Announces New Strategy to Aid the Ailing Tourism Industry

By Mary Mwendwa, African Correspondent

Kenya’s President, Uhuru Kenyatta, recently issued radical measures that are meant to revive the already limping Kenya’s tourism sector. Recently, the country has been faced with an array of challenges that have impacted the tourism industry in a negative way.

In a move to promote local tourism, Kenyans working in the private sector will from June 2014 enjoy paid holidays anywhere in the country as the government seeks to revive the tourism industry as a result of insecurity.

In a statement released from State House, Nairobi, President Uhuru Kenyatta said that from June 12, 2014, companies would be allowed to pay for their employees going on their annual leave and deduct such expenditure in their taxes.

“Through this measure, we shall directly give at least 25,000 Kenyans a chance to go for a week’s holiday every month at the expense of their employers, bringing over 300,000 additional Kenyan guests in our hotels throughout the country,” Mr Kenyatta said. This is part of a new raft of policy measures taken by the government to revamp tourism, which is on its knees following the issuance of travel advisories by major source markets due to high insecurity.

The steps were agreed upon during a crisis meeting held at State House, Nairobi, between the President and stakeholders to look into new ways of reviving a sector that is a key pillar to the economy.

The boost is meant to reduce the impact of the travel advisories, while in the long run boosting local tourism.

The sector has to contend with fresh travel bans announced in the last couple of weeks by the United Kingdom, United States of America, Germany and Canada. These are the main source markets for Kenya’s tourism and it is feared that the developments could deal a serious blow to the local economy.

.“We would like to warn our nationals that any non-essential travel to the said areas is discouraged due to an impending likelihood of terrorism activities,” one of the advisories cautioned.



A sustained spate of grenade and IED attacks on Kenyans, particularly in Nairobi, the tourism bedrock of Mombasa and areas bordering Somalia, have seen the western nations move to enforce the travel advisories.

Just last week, several UK tour operators evacuated their tourists holidaying in Mombasa and put them on chartered flights back home, cancelling some of the stays running into weeks. Over 500 tourists left on the specially chartered flights.

Mombasa which used to host up to 80 percent of Kenya’s tourism activity has suffered a number of grenade attacks at various locations. Several people, all of them Kenyans, have died and dozens more were maimed during these attacks. The Kenyan government has been trying to contain the incidents with little success.

Already, the tourism sector has lost over $59 million following the cancellations announced last week. These affected bookings that had been made between May and October 2014.





Switzerland will educate the audience through five towers provided with local products available for everyone and encourages people to reflect on its consumption patterns. It is ‘Confooderatio Helvetica,’ the Swiss pavilion designed by a Brugg-based Netwerch firm.

There will also be food clusters representing cereals and tubers, chocolate, coffee, fruits and legumes, Island (ocean and sea), rice and spices and pavillions dedicated to specfic topics, such as Biodiversity and Pavillion Zero, a scenic exhibition to discover the millenarian relationship between man and nature.

Further information: http://www.expo2015.org/en/participants/countries

Expo Milano 2015

By Sara Vitali, Italian Correspondent

It is less than one year until the Universal Exposition will begin in Milan. A large number of meetings have been organised and many more are going to come in Milan and surrounding areas such as Como, Lecco and Erba. There will be pavillions for each state and the theme is Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life.

From the Pinterest official profile, there are updates about the pavillions. The information available is from Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Brasil, Cile, China, Czech Republic, EU, Estonia, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Moldavia, Monaco, Spain, Switzerland, (USA) United States of America and (UAE) United Arab Emirates.

The most interesting pavillions related with sustainability are: Austria, Israel, Monaco and Switzerland.

Austria is going to present 'breathe'. 62.5 kg of fresh oxygen is produced per hour.  The main feature of 'breathe' will be air. Inside, a miniature Austrian wood, it will offer a sensorial experience of a cleaner world. The concept and project is by the Klaus K. Loenhart, Terrain team. With 'breathe,' Austria is making an incisive contribution to the theme. Breathe highlights the #1 source of nourishment and one of the most important resources for an international audience: Air, Architecture, Nature, Culture and Research are brought together to offer the visitor a personal experience.

Israel will bring experience and knowledge about agriculture. The project by David Knafo involves 2,370 square metres, a vertical garden and recycled materials, and is inspired by the characteristic aspect of Israel's agricultural production. The pavilion will present the theme ‘The Field of Tomorrow.’

Monaco will have 11 interactive exhibition stations inside an architecture made of shipping containers. A meeting point, open and green, with Mediterranean plants and a rainwater-collection system.  The project is by Enrico Pollini.