Our principles for a mindful and responsible travel experience on the touristic trails.

• We use and create opportunities to make a positive impact on the environment and social structures while minimizing any social and environmental damage by and along our tours.

• We deliver memorable interpretative experiences to our guests that raise sensitivity to Albania’s environmental, cultural and social climates and the local small businesses.

• We maximize the economic contribution of travel groups for local people and private industry in rural areas, supporting civic low-impact businesses in particular.

• We work in true partnership with suppliers providing relevant support, education and exchange to the local stakeholders.

• We generate direct financial benefits to support the further development of the rural accommodation sector and local lounges.

• We assess and monitor the impact of our touristic trails continuously with our partners and tie our trail to this evidence.

Our ethical practices along the touristic trails:

• Environmentally –protecting the nature and natural resources

Accommodation: We suggest our business partners in the areas we work with to find the best types of recycling and waste management programs in their guest houses we stay at. We emphasize the need to reduce their energy consumption. We also advise them to think and act in favour of important aspects: sustainable site development, water savings, material selection, solar power, rainwater harvesting, energy-efficient lighting, use of environmentally-friendly products, including detergents, soap, ‘green’ certifications.

Packaging: Use of reusable bags, lunch boxes or water bottle for fill-ups to cut down on wasteful packaging. We suggest guests to bring them along or we provide them.

Getting around in-country: Looking into opportunities to use a hybrid/electric car. Avoiding long distance travel across the country by selecting appropriate tours → focus on a specific area rather than covering the whole country in one tour.

Travel – international: Providing ‘green’ alternatives to a plane journey and supporting our guests with relevant arrangements/bookings.

Policies / Standards: Compliance with eco-tourism standards, which are recently enforced from the Albania Government in regard to Agritourist businesses’ classification.

• Social and economic – empowering and contributing to the economic well-being of the local communities and our business partners

Choice of partners: Cooperation with hotels, guesthouses, restaurants and other suppliers that are locally owned and operated and staffed by local employees. Hiring of additional local guides. Cooperation with partners that take on trainees/apprentices.

Products / shopping: Support for shopping at craft enterprises owned by local people. Use and purchase of locally made food and other products from local vendors, rather than imported ones.

Empowerment: We are working on finding means to provide training, sensitization and support for local suppliers and partners to become more eco-sensitive. Consultations to understand the viewpoints and goals of our local partners and be able t support them in their achievement. Inclusion of gender dimension Through local NGO which can increase the awareness of local small businesses from a gender dimension point of view.

Capacity-building activities: We emphasize the need for building capacities, in order to include strengthening human resources and institutional capacities, transferring know-how, developing appropriate facilities, and training on biodiversity, sustainable tourism, impact assessment and impact-management.

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