Affordable seal of approval
Running a business cost time and money and right now every investment needs to count. That’s why the Good Travel Seal is an affordable addition to help you attract the environmentally conscious traveller.
Photo © Marta Wave
Not just a new eco label
The Good Travel Seal certification is part of the Good Travel Guide sustainable travel platform, which promotes destinations and businesses to responsible travellers looking for a green holiday. The certification is awarded to tourism businesses for their commitment in the fields of environmentally-friendly management, social responsibility, and health & safety.
We offer two versions of the program: The Good Travel Seal and The Good Travel Seal + which includes additional full GSTC Industry standard.
The Good Travel Seal is more than just a certification, it is a sustainability support program for all tourism and travel related businesses and facilities, especially designed to be feasible and affordable for SMEs. Certification is based on the GTS-SME Standard, covering 67% of the GSTC Standard. We apply 57 criteria in the field of environment, social responsibility, health & safety, and some sector-specific criteria. All certified businesses receive our seal, certificate, and performance Scorecard.
Apart from certification with the GTS-SME Standard we offer hotels certification based on the full GSTC Standard, which is equivalent to certification on a GSTC-Recognised Standard. Compared to the GST-SME Standard we add 14 additional criteria from the GSTC Standard. This is a great and affordable opportunity for larger hotels that already have ample sustainability experience and those that began with the SME Standard and are ready to move forward.
GTS+ audits are on-site and require additional audit costs.
Especially made for SMEs
The Seal is especially created to serve medium and small family-run enterprises (SMEs), but large businesses can also be certified.
Available for all types of business
The certification is available to all types of businesses in the tourism supply chain, including hotels, B&Bs, campsites, bars, restaurants, takeaways, activity providers, dive centres, small country-based cruise operators, car rentals, local destination marketing organisations, and others.
Partner Organisations can decide whether they also offer the Good Planet Seal, which will use the same criteria and procedure to businesses that do not feel part of the “travel sector” like restaurants, takeaways, golf courses, snacks, shops, offices, and farms.
Destinations are strongly encouraged to engage their business community in the Good Travel Seal certification program
Having a good number of certified businesses in your destination makes it more attractive to the audience of green travellers!
Through a publicly available Scorecard we show customers the sustainability performance of tourism businesses. This way there can be no greenwashing.
Our programs are especially created to be affordable and feasible for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), but we also support larger businesses.
3. Operates Worldwide
The Seal operates worldwide. We cooperate with local expert organisations and representatives, who can introduce the certification under a different branding.
How does the certification work?
You will be invited to fill out the reporting on our online platform and submit supporting documents. This will indicate to what extent your business implements measures for sustainable and responsible tourism. The reporting consists of 57 general criteria (+ more sector specific criteria) from 12 themes.
The information on the platform will then be assessed by a team of experts, who will evaluate how many of the criteria were achieved by your business.
An independent auditor will verify these criteria by visiting your business. The audit can be carried out online (via video call) or on-site.
Auditors of Sustainable Travel Taiwan (STT) doing on-site business audits for the Green Travel Seal in North East and Yilan Coast.
The findings of the audit will be used to make a final certification decision. The result will be a score (percentage). If it is sufficient, you will be awarded the Good Travel Seal and a Certificate. There are three levels of the Good Travel Seal, based on the score:
At least 50% of compliance with the full GTS Standard, through a desk assessment.
At least 75% of compliance with the full GTS Standard, through an online/onsite audit.
At least 95% of compliance with the full GTS Standard, through an online/onsite audit.
At least 75% of compliance with the full GTS Standard and additional GSTC-I criteria, through an onsite audit.
At least 95% of compliance with the full GTS Standard and additional GSTC-I criteria, through an onsite audit.
Mr. Ma, Director of NEYC, handing out the award during the 2021 GTS Award Ceremony in Fulong Hotel North East and Yilan Coast, Taiwan.
Certificate of Bonaire Blue Destination Company Certification
Score card of Bonaire Blue Destination Company Certification
We also display a comparison of all certified businesses on the GTG page of their destination. These tables highlight the areas in which the businesses excel, by awarding them with a selection of badges.
What are the benefits?
Happy Guests = Higher Ratings
Certified businesses receive better reviews and ratings. This proves that certification boosts management and quality of services.
Certified businesses use 19% less water, 24% less waste and 10% less CO2.
Show What You Do
Another benefit of the Good Travel Seal is our transparency. You will be able to show your customers what aspects you do well. A label alone doesn’t work, but showing your performance does!
Due diligence is probably the best yet most underestimated reason. In response to complaints, clarify that your business is compliant to the standards of an independent certification for sustainable tourism!
You will save on energy, water, and waste disposal costs with a certification. Moreover, happy guests and high ratings will bring you more visitors. On top of that, the Good Travel certification also offers you the best-price guarantee.
Traditional certification programs are not promoting your business. With the Good Travel Seal, your business will be featured in the Good Travel Guide and soon also in other websites (Sustainable First a.o.) providing travellers with easy ways to explore destinations.
Get listed on EcoHotels.com & Sustainable First
If your accommodation business has received at least a 2-star certification, you can get listed on EcoHotels, a responsible and sustainable alternative to the large and dominant booking platform whose business models and high commissions severely decimate individual hotels´ identity, concept, and bottom line. EcoHotels´ mission is to be a community for hotels, sharing knowledge and best practices, and standing side by side to promote sustainability in the travel industry.
In terms commission, EcoHotels will take 0% commission during 2021, only 8% commission for the following 9 months, and 10% commission for perpetuity thereafter. Furthermore, from this year onward they will offer the option for travellers booking a hotel through their site to either plant a tree or donate to Plastic Change x ReSea Project.
EcoHotels only showcases high-quality, certified hotels to help make travel a force for good around the globe.
Every 2 and 3-star certified businesses will be showcased by Sustainable First, a platform recognising sustainability efforts in tourism. Sustainable First will promote your sustainable business using multi-media content to a global audience with the vision of making the tourism industry the leading activity sector in implementing sustainable strategies.
The Swiss Sustainability Programme ‘Swisstainable’ has recognized the ‘Good Travel Seal’ as a form of proof. The ‘Good Travel Seal’ (Level 2 = checked) authorises the use of the Swiss label ‘Swisstainable engaged’ in combination with further proof of sustainability. The ‘Good Travel Seal’ (Level 3 = certified) leads directly – without further proof – to the label ‘Swisstainable engaged’. Alpine representatives are available to provide you with information and support on all aspects of Swisstainable. Click here to learn further.
Good Travel Seal in your destination?
The Good Travel Seal operates worldwide. We cooperate with local representatives and partner organisations to support the introduction of the certification program in a new destination or country. This enables us to offer the certification in the local language.
In several regions we operate under different branding. For example, in Bonaire we cooperate with Bonaire’s Chamber of Commerce, under the name Blue Destination Company Certification. In Taiwan we operate under the name Green Travel Seal, in collaboration with Sustainable Travel Taiwan.
“We are very grateful for the team of Good Travel Guide. From the beginning, they have guided us very much to understand the certification process and to set up a system that works for us. The team has a lot of patience with us and with the businesses. It is a pleasure to brainstorm with them as the demand for the Blue Destination Company Certification keeps growing.”
Ghislaine Monte, Project leader of Bonaire Blue Destination certification
Get ahead in your sustainability certification journey!
For a full overview of the Good Travel Seal Criteria click here
Get in touch with us, there is no payment needed yet!
To see the businesses who have the certification, please visit Bonaire page.