Assessment of impact and statement of committment

  • Define the scope of the audit: Clearly define the areas of the company’s operations that will be covered by the audit, such as energy use, waste management, transportation, and accommodations.
  • Identify our current practices: Gather information about our current practices in each area of the audit, including data on energy and water use, waste generation, and transportation.
  • Assess environmental and social impacts: Evaluate the environmental and social impacts of the company’s current practices, including the impact on local communities, wildlife, and natural resources.

Assess our dependency and impact on animals and nature


Animondial Animal Footprint Evaluation Tool:


Where do we directly interact with animals?

  • Elephants in Thailand
  • Monkeys – Sri Lanka, India and Thailand
  • Whale watching, swim with the Dolphins New Zealand
  • Snorkelling – Australia, Bali, Thailand, Vietnam
  • Koalas – Australia
  • Dingos – Australia
  • Safari – Tanzania
  • Sea turtles – Bali, Papua New Guinea


Where do we have deep nature immersion?

  • Hiking (Tongariro crossing, Bridal Veil Falls), National Parks (Able Tasman, Milford Sound) in New Zealand
  • Blue Mountains, Cape Tribulation (Daintree), Port Stephens, National Parks (Byron Bay, Whitsunday Island, other?), Fraser Island, Great Barrier Reef – Australia
  • Mt Batur – Bali
  • Thailand?
  • Japan
  • Meet National Park – Croatia


Where do we have active positive impact on nature?

  • Reforestation, beach clean-up – Croatia
  • Marine Conservation – Australia, Papua New Guinea, Bali
  • Elephants – Thailand

Assess our positive and negative impact on the cultures we travel through



Where do we have positive cultural immersion

  • Lake Aniwhenua, work experience – New Zealand
  • Port Macquari, work experience – Australia
  • Les Village – Bali
  • Nepal
  • Thailand?
  • Japan?
  • Colombia
  • School – Tanzania

Assess our total carbon output

What are our biggest challenges


  • U. takes travellers to the world’s most beautiful places – our trips are intrinsically linked to biodiversity and nature. What percentage of our trips are highly dependent on nature?? But at the same time our trips fuel conservation efforts and direct spend in the local economies. We are in a unique position to either destroy or protect our planet’s natural natural wonders.
  • Partying, credit cards, long-haul travel sit uncomfortably with environmental sustainability. Our anecdotal experience is such that in our young travellers the say-do gap is actually much less than in older sectors.
    • A Skift survey of 1,011 respondents for this report found only 14 percent of travellers have willingly paid more for such an option
    • What percentage of U. Travellers have offset the travel carbon (create infographic)
      • Create a goal and measure this
    • We have been poor with offsetting flight carbon
      • A 2022 Swiss study found when presented with the option to buy carbon offsets for flights, only around 5 percent of consumers did so—resulting in a mean carbon offset purchase of only around €1 per flight – compare this to U.Travellers since we started offsetting flights
    • What percentage of U. Travellers have offset their flight carbon
      • Create a goal and measure this
    • Our own internal performance
      • Offsetting Dan’s carbon
      • Office performance
    • Cultural interaction often involves children. Children are NOT for entertainment
    • Our customers are insecure and often concerned about many of the basics of U. Trips
      • Travelling with other cultures
      • New (unusual) foods
      • The adventure of a homestay
    • Communicating to customers why we should not do things
      • Riding elephants in Thailand
      • Monkey forest in Bali
      • Invasive school visits in Tanzania
      • Cutting costs – by avoiding to use National Porters Association in Tanzania
    • Western guides are sympathetic to the customers (often with young travellers centred around wanting to drink and party, not being overly fussed about too many temples) versus local guides creating direct employment


  1. Introducing U.
  2. Approach to creating a responsible tourism company
    1. Crossing the chasm to creating a sustainable youth tourism industry
    2. The Look-Envision-Build Model
  3. The project
    1. Assess and Define: Assessment of impact and statement of commitment
    2. Dream: Evaluation of possible objectives
    3. Prioritise and blueprint: Prioritisation of objectives and action items
    4. Deliver: Project management
    5. Maximise: How we maximise the value of our efforts
    6. Monitor and Report: Ongoing review and next steps
  4. Appendices (online available offline)
    1. Travelife Certification Criteria
    2. BCorp Certification Criteria

Download the U. Responsible Tourism Framework.


Define what we believe are the best practice in responsible tourism
Community (Economic)
Environmental / Nature

Our role

Create moment that allow travellers to fully immerse themselves in the culture of the destination, such as staying with local families and learning traditional skills.

Benefit local communities by validating local partner credentials (licenses, health and safety, local employment) – cheapest is not necessarily best;
Always choosing local companies as a priority;
Invest ourselves in local projects;

Reduce firstly and then offset carbon footprint;
Contribute to conservation programs;
Never use animals or children for entertainment;
Put our money where our mouth is in our own daily impact and in the office                        Actively contribute to UN SDGs

Create an environment of inclusivity both in our office and on our trips;
Be aware of our mental health as well as that of others;
Be mindful of “green everyday life”                            Strive to create awesome experiences for our customers

Travellers role

Be open-minded by letting go of their prejudices and preconceptions;
Try something/everything new

Be respectful to the different cultures we visit – trying our best to communicate despite language barriers

Proportion their travel budgets to allow for projects beyond just the normal (party) travel experience;
Spend local

Offset all carbon;
Reduce use of plastic;
Clean-up after ourselves;
Get involved in environmental projects

Recognise sunlight, fresh-air and clean-water are pre-requisites for physical health; Be mindful of other cultural or religious practices (dress accordingly, act respectfully); Don’t break the rules by doing something yourself if advised against this Recognise your role in over-tourism

Guides role

Demonstrate with pride what it means to be a local

Never choose an activity, restaurant, bar, shop, accommodation for the purpose of receiving commission if a better option exists

Lead from the front on plastic, cleaning-up

The actions of me as a guide as the face of the company in the community and with the travellers

Community role

Be completely welcoming;
Don’t offer up interactions that are not genuine in the interests of solely economic gain

Provide unique and genuine experiences

Never choose profit over the environment
Tourism can facilitate economic development but should not fundamentally change the cultural fabric over a community
  • Commit to our own code of ethics




Create the best travel experiences we can dream of

Bring people together from all over the world in small groups to beautiful new destinations for the purpose of
exploration, enjoyment and enlightenment

Create a community of inclusivity, safety travel memories, laughs and great times.

Provide an all-in-one service with everything needed for incredible SUSTAINABLE adventures including guidance,
flights, tours, insurance, carbon-offsetting and much more.

Maintain and review
Appropriate insurances in place


Health and safety

Document policies

Integrate monthly reports into board report

Improve reporting from in-destination


Emergency availability

Member of team always to be available

Risk register in place


Maximise local spend



Provide transparency in the booking process the demystifies the customers emissions impact Info on sustainability

What to expect on a trip (inclusions may change)

Integrate responsibility reporting into monthly management accounts


Collect customer feedback




Appropriate vehicles


Children and animals are for entertainment

No orphanages

Responsible giving = Don’t create or perpetuate a culture of begging

Responsible interactions – children participation in cultural performances must be voluntary

Responsible interactions – animal interaction must not cause disturbance (eg like it does at Monkey Forest)

Maintain and Improve

Small group sizes
Reduce impact on people, planet, and experience



Sign an expectations and reposibilitiues agreement with partners

Hold information on licenses, health and safety policies, insurances, sustainability statements, local guide info


Role as an educator
Provide good information on local culture and heritage