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Sustainability Development Goals (SDG)

The mission of the company is to inspire travellers around the world to choose the Maltese Islands for their holiday through sustainable growth in authentic quality experiences and innovative technologies that make ours Malta's premier incoming tourism company.

Conventionally, sustainability can be outlined into three pillars concurrently - the economic, environmental and sociocultural impact sets and thus achieve the “triple bottom line” (Elkington, 1997; Sherman 2012). It is only through collaboration by stakeholders that the ‘triple bottom line’
sustainability targets may be achieved. This policy and subsequent goals and actions are an effort by the company to achieve this sustainability target within a growth context.

Sustainability Policy

Our sustainability policy is divided into 10 themes. Each theme consists of a set of principles and practical actions and goals accordingly.

1. Sustainability Management & Legal compliance

We commit to sustainability management, practiced by the following actions:

  • To have an appointed employee who is responsible for sustainability coordinator tasks;
  • To have a mission statement that is communicated to customers, partners and suppliers that includes the pillars of sustainability;
  • To have an accessible and written sustainability policy that aims for a reduction of the negative social, cultural, economic and environmental impacts of the company’s activities; and includes employee related health and safety aspects;
  • To collaborate and actively involved in external forums and working groups which are supportive to sustainability in tourism;
  • To conduct baseline assessment of the company’s performance on sustainable practices;
  • To have sustainability guidelines and assessment system in place to identify the sustainability performance of key actors within our value chain;
  • To have sustainability action plan with clear targets, actions, measures, responsibilities and time planning;
  • To develop documented procedures to monitor and evaluate the implementation of the sustainability policy, objectives and targets;
  • To ensure company’s transparency in sustainability by public reporting and communicating;
  • To ensure that all staff are fully aware of our Sustainability Policy and are committed to implementing and improving it.

We commit to complying with all national legislation, regulations and codes of practice.

2. Internal management: social policy & human rights

We commit to sustainable internal management by having well-communicated social policy that includes the following principles:

We commit to practice human rights by ensure the enforcement of following practices:

  • To declare not to hinder trade union membership, collective labour negotiations and representation of members by trade unions;
  • To prohibit discriminations, regard to recruitment, conditions of employment, access to training and senior positions, or promotion in terms of gender, race, age, disability, ethnicity, religion/beliefs or sexual orientation;
  • To ensure all employees have an equal chance and access to resources and opportunities for personal development through regular training, education;

3. Internal Management: Environment and community relations

We commit to practice environmental protection and enhance community relations by ensuring the enforcement of following practices:

  • Actively reduce the use of disposable and consumer goods;
  • Favour the purchase of sustainable goods and services, office and catering supply, giveaways and merchandise;
  • Purchase products in bulk (where possible), to reduce the amount of packaging materials;
  • Set copy and printing machines by default to double-sided printing or other forms of paper saving modes;
  • Print brochures on environmentally friendly paper, with a printing company that works with a certified environmental management system, if locally available at reasonable costs;
  • Implement measurements to reduce brochure wastage or an 'internet only' policy, where possible;
  • Purchase energy efficient lighting for all areas, when available;
  • Switch off lights and equipment when not in use;
  • Prefer low energy equipment when buying new items, including considerations of cost and quality;
  • Install water saving equipment in toilets;
  • Comply with the national legislation concerning waste disposal;
  • Take action to reduce the amount of (non-refillable) plastic bottles of drinking water for office use;
  • Separate all materials which can be recycled and organize collection and proper disposal;
  • Recycle or properly dispose of batteries; 
  • Use lead-free and water based paints, both inside and outside, when locally available;
  • Reduce transport related impacts by telework, video calls, work-at-home policies or other means;
  • Maintain and properly check motorised company vehicles, to reduce emissions and energy use and make sure they comply with the legal emission standards,
  • Provide periodic guidance, training and/or information to all staff members, about their roles and responsibilities with respect to internal environmental practices;
  • Comply with land use, zoning and protected or heritage area laws and regulations; when planning, designing, constructing, renovating, operating or demolishing company buildings and infrastructure;
  • Base planning, design and construction of new buildings or renovations, on locally appropriate and feasible sustainable practices and materials;
  • Contribute to the protection and preservation of local historical, archaeological, culturally, and spiritually important properties and sites, and not impede access to them by local residents;

4. Partners

Based on an inventory of our key partners, we have developed and implemented a policy to improve sustainability of our partners. Our aim is to make sustainable development concrete to each and every partner within our business.

We commit to this by;

  • Keeping a list of the sustainability practices of partner accommodations ;
  • Minimalizing the ecologic footprint of the office by travelling mainly via multi-modal transportation, working as paperless as possible, separating waste, and to make use of certified recycled paper;
  • Paying attention to the local benefits of communities when influencing the selection of local accommodations by our customers and their social policy for employees;
  • Informing key partners on the Travelife and national tourism standards;
  • Informing key partners about the travel companies’ sustainability policy and that they are expected to comply with it and/or communicate it to final customers where relevant;
  • Having a written contract with partner agencies;
  • Ensuring that partner companies comply with all relevant national laws protecting the rights of employees;

5. Transport

We try to ensure that vehicles used in tourism operations do not cause more than average pollution. We believe that transport is an important aspect of sustainable tourism, and we do our best to decrease the average pollution level.

We commit to this by;

  • Selecting the most sustainable options considering price and comfort when selecting transport options to the destination;
  • Considering and giving preference to more sustainable alternatives when selecting transport options for transfers and excursions in the destination, taking into account price, comfort, and practical considerations;

6. Accommodations

We try to achieve a tourism supply chain that is fully sustainable. The partner accommodations play an important role in achieving this.

We commit to this by;

  • Selecting accommodations that comply with sustainability and quality standards;
  • Encouraging accommodations to fill in the sustainability questionnaire to gain insight in their practises;
  • Clearly and actively communicating our sustainability objectives and requirements regarding accommodations to contracted and other relevant accommodations;
  • Giving clear preference to accommodations that work with internationally acknowledged (e.g. GSTC recognised) and/or Travelife certification;

7. Excursions and activities

We value animal and community welfare extremely high and aims at tours that only leave a minor footprint. We are safeguarding the authenticity of the communities and the natural environment, and are strongly against harming wildlife and polluting the environment.

We commit to this by:

  • Having an inventory of environmentally or culturally sensitive excursions which are offered in each destination;
  • Advising guests on behaviour standards during excursions and activities with a focus on respecting the local culture, nature, and environment;
  • Communicating our sustainability objectives and requirements to contracted and other relevant excursion providers;
  • Not offering any excursions in which wildlife is held captive, except for properly regulated activities in compliance with local, national, and international law;
  • Not being involved with companies that harvest, consume, display, sell, or trade wildlife species unless it is part of a regulated activity that ensures that their utilisation is sustainable and in compliance with local, national, and international law;
  • Having certified guides and knowledgeable experts to guide our guests in sensitive cultural sites, heritage sites, or ecologically sensitive destinations;
  • Promoting and advise our guests on excursions and activities which directly involve and support local communities by purchasing services or goods, traditional crafts and local (food) production methods, or visiting social projects;
  • Promoting and advising our guests on excursions and activities which support local environment and biodiversity such as visiting protected areas or environmental protection projects;

8. Tour leaders, local representatives and guides

We aim at involving as many locals as possible by employing them in the tourism business. We stand for a fair and safe working environment that supports and respects local communities.

We commit to this by;

  • Ensuring that all employees have a written employment contract, including labour conditions and a job description, and fully understand the terms and conditions;
  • Ensuring that our local partners comply with all applicable national laws and regulations, industry minimum standards, and any other relevant statutory requirements whichever requirements are more stringent;
  • Paying local representatives, guides and other local staff contracted by us above the legal minimum or relevant industry standard;
  • Ensuring that our tour guides, hosts, and other employees under contract are qualified and trained regularly;
  • Ensuring that our local employees are informed on relevant aspects of our sustainability policy and comply with it;
  • Having our local representatives and guides inform clients on relevant sustainability matters in the destination (e.g. protection of flora, fauna, and cultural heritage, resource use), social norms and values (e.g. tips, dressing code and photography) and human rights (e.g. sexual exploitation);

9. Destination

We aim to maximize positive impacts and minimize negative impacts to ensure the sustainable development of the places that we operate in.

We commit to this by:

  • Comply with legally based spatial planning, protected areas and heritage regulations.  Also with destination management strategies of national authorities;
  • Support initiatives that improve the relationships between accommodations and local producers;
  • Influence and support local government (when possible, together with other travel companies and stakeholders) concerning sustainability, destination planning and management, use of natural resources and socio-cultural issues;
  • Support biodiversity conservation, including protected areas and areas of high biodiversity, through   financial contribution, political support, and integration in product offers;
  • Not to promote souvenirs which contain threatened flora and fauna species as indicated in the CITES treaty and the IUCN ‘Red List’; or historic and archaeological artefacts (except as permitted by law);

10. Customer communication and protection

Customers welfare and information are very important to us, making clear and constant communication to our clients. We ensure that no marketing and advertisement material, shall contain misleading information, over advertise and under deliver. We guarantee that all our staff are aware of and ensure that what is offered can be delivered to our clients with ease.

Prior to booking, we commit to this by:

  • Ensure that customer privacy is not compromised;
  • Comply with relevant standards and voluntary codes of conduct in marketing and advertising messages, and not promise more than is delivered;
  • Make product and price information clear, complete and accurate, with regard to the company and its products and services, including sustainability claims;
  • Provide destination information, including sustainability aspects, which is factually correct, balanced and complete;
  • Promote sustainable accommodations, excursions, packages and/or transport options, with logos or other messages; ensuring they are recognizable to consumer;
  • Inform the customer about sustainable alternatives concerning accommodations, excursions, package holidays and transport options, if available;
  • Clearly inform customers, about sustainability commitments and actions;

After booking and during holidays, we commit to this by:

  • Provide Information to consumers about the natural surroundings, local culture and cultural heritage in the holiday destination;
  • Inform consumers about key sustainability aspects and issues in the destination and receive recommendations on how to make a positive contribution;
  • Inform customers about risks and precautions related to health and safety matters in the destination;
  • Keep a contact person and a telephone number permanently available for emergency situations;
  • Train personnel and keep guidelines available, on how to deal with emergency situations;
  • Provide clients with documented guidelines and/or codes of conduct for sensitive excursions and activities, to minimize negative visitor impact and maximize enjoyment. When possible, guidelines are developed in collaboration with relevant NGO's and the affected community;
  • Provide customers with information about commercial, sexual or any other form of exploitation and harassment, particularly of children and adolescents;
  • Inform clients about applicable legislation concerning the purchasing, sales, import and export of historic or religious artefacts and articles containing materials of threatened flora and/or fauna in the destination;
  • Motivate clients to use local restaurants and shops (where appropriate);
  • Inform clients on sustainable transport options in destinations, when feasible;
  • Encourage clients to donate to local charity and sustainable initiatives (such as Victory Kitchen);

Upon client departure, we commit to this by:

  • Have clear procedures in case of complaints from clients;

TravelLife Sustainability Report

Based on a sustainability report below and compliance with the basic requirements assessed by Travelife, Robert Arrigo & Sons has reached the Travelife Partner status. More info on the criteria used in our Sustainability report, can be found below:

References

ELKINGTON, J., 1998. Cannibals with forks: The triple bottom line of 21st century business. Gabriola Island. BC: New Society Publishers.
SHERMAN, W.R., 2012. The Triple Bottom Line: The Reporting Of Doing Well & Doing Good. Journal of applied business research, 28(4), pp.
673.