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Responsible travel policy

Responsible Travel Policy

At EcoChile, our greatest purpose and commitment is to sustainability; we cannot provide
the best possible experience for the client if we are not supporting and protecting the
places, people, and culture that make those experiences possible. This commitment begins
with ensuring that our work and mission aligns with everyone we work with: our team,
suppliers, clients, and tourism companies throughout the world.
To that aim, we are also constantly improving our trips’ operations, creating better
relationships with the suppliers we work with, and ensuring that ethics codes are met.
Over the past few years, we’ve also committed to personally visiting all of the destinations
we offer in order to get to know all of our stakeholders personally. This has allowed us to
learn more about best practices and be able to suggest and share experiences with
like-minded travelers.

Purpose
Inspire local experiences

BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal)

Become the lead tour operator in social and environmental responsibility

CORE Values

1. Be professional, but keep it fun.
2. Seek growth and profit with authenticity.
3. Encourage recognition and personal development.
4. Establish a personal connection with the client’s experience.
5. Make a habit of creating solutions at the moment.

 

Economic responsibility

Our main purpose is to inspire local experiences; therefore, our trip specialists work together
with the local suppliers to design experiences that work with local people and businesses in
our destinations. We do this via a constant strong research effort, belonging to a special
network of local suppliers that are striving to make real change, and most importantly,
visiting the destinations ourselves to ensure that the services we offer are aligned with our
values.
For us, it is fundamental that our partners support the local, regional economies and
communities of our destinations, such as, in the case of local tour operators, employing local
guides and drivers. This also applies to hotels, which should similarly employ the local
community without any type of discrimination. Both activities and accommodations should
include food that is obtained locally, encouraging local producers to supply their operations.
Additionally, we adhere to the principles of fair trade and share them with our customers at
the time of booking.

 

Environmental responsibility

Working together with our partners and local suppliers, our team is committed to designing
smart, responsible, and sustainable itineraries that are similarly beneficial for the destination
and the client. Some of the ways we achieve this include offering small group activities that
operate on different schedules to avoid crowds (e.g. visiting popular tourist attractions
outside of peak time), reducing the impact on local people and wildlife through small-group
travel, and refusing to promote/condoning any activities that feature captive animals. Also,
our itineraries are designed to reduce the use of planes to get to places that are easily
accessible by land.
We have also eliminated single-use plastics from our operations, encouraging guests to
bring reusable bottles and working with our suppliers around the country to ensure that
purified water is available at all hotels and on our tours. Recycling programs are also being
implemented.
Our selected partners and direct operations must include the consensual participation and
support of local communities, ensuring that they are willing and open to sharing their
lifestyles and cultures with visitors, and supporting local communities further by employing
locals for tours and at the accommodation options.
We prefer activities that provide and include informative talks from the guides on
environmental projects and challenges, as well as lectures about Leave No Trace practices
and other educational initiatives on minimizing environmental damage.
Ultimately. We adhere to the code of conduct for responsible tourism and share it with
clients at the time of booking.

In our workplace, we minimize our use of paper products by providing digital
documentations to all of our clients prior to traveling, as well as only printing essential
brochures and documents. We also have a recycling program in our office in Santiago and a
reduction plan to scale back on the use of Styrofoam, cafeteria trays, single-use soft drink
bottles, plastic utensils, grocery plastic bags, aluminum foil, etc.
Additionally, under Chilean law, our office uses one less work hour, which we use to allow
our employees to arrive half an hour later in the morning and leave half an hour earlier in
the evening. This allows them to avoid rush hours, thereby reducing commuting time,
providing a better quality of life, and promoting other, more sustainable and healthy forms
of transportation such as cycling. We also have a fruit delivery service to provide all office
staff with healthy snacks, as well as supporting a local business.

 

Social responsibility 

We believe that travel is a tool that connects people of different realities that otherwise
wouldn’t have had a chance to meet. For this reason, we feel a strong responsibility to make
these encounters as authentic, educational, and transformative as possible. On one side, it
opens up the minds of visitors who are able to put themselves in a stranger’s shoes for a
while, and on the other side, it allows local communities to share their way of life with
outsiders, expressing real-world stories about their lives, struggles, and triumphs.
Thus, we create itineraries and experiences based not only on the attractions but also the
people and societies involved along the journey. Our trips feature local guides who provide
real context about the communities travelers are visiting and educate them on the culture,
history, and lifestyle of the destination. We also promote local artisan traditions and trades,
visiting projects like weavers and the Coyo community in the Atacama desert and artisan
villages in the Lake District and Chiloe, raising awareness of these cultural and artistic
traditions and giving visitors the opportunity to purchase souvenirs that will direct benefit
the community.