Here at Rickshaw Travel, we love animals. Whether it’s elephants, whales, tigers or orangutans we’re a bunch of animal lovers (we even have the odd tarantula fan). That’s why we’ve made a big commitment to improve animal welfare in tourism. By doing so, we hope to make sure animals, local communities and travellers stay happy and safe. Read on to find out more about our commitment, including our partnership with Animal Welfare experts, ANIMONDIAL.
Our partnership with ANIMONDIAL
We’re serious about this animal welfare stuff and want to do everything we can to improve the welfare of animals in tourism. We’ve therefore teamed up with animal welfare experts, ANIMONDIAL. Their vision is to minimise tourism’s impact on animals, natural environments and the people that depend upon them. They’ve helped us to improve the welfare standards of our trips even further and create long-term plans to support animals in tourism. Best of all though, we’ve worked together to create an Animal Welfare in Tourism Starter Kit for small businesses, to help other travel companies improve their animal welfare standards too.
How our journey began…
Our animal welfare journey started long before our partnership with ANIMONDIAL. It all began when we were awarded our Travelife Better Places Partner Level in 2014 for our efforts in sustainability. We then utilised the Global Welfare Guidance for Animals in Tourism guidelines developed by the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA). We followed the guidelines very closely but soon decided that we wanted to do more…
In 2016 we teamed up with World Animal Protection, an international non-profit animal welfare organisation that has been in operation for over 30 years. Their vision: A world where animal welfare matters and animal cruelty has ended. We developed our Animal Welfare Policy with their support and committed to helping see the end of elephant riding by signing their elephant-friendly pledge. You can find out more about our Ethical Elephant Journey and have a look through our Elephant Welfare Policy.
We want to eradicate cruel tourism practices that compromise animal welfare. We know this is an ongoing journey so, in order to achieve this, we strive to:
- Review our animal experiences regularly
- Continue following and developing our Animal Welfare Policy
- Continuously review our animal welfare criteria as and when new evidence comes to light
- Work with local partners to improve the welfare of animals in our trips
- Where the above is not possible, to remove any trips that fail to meet our animal welfare criteria
- Continue to support animal projects across our destinations
- Promote ethical animal experiences and awareness among our staff, our partners and our travellers
Tackling animal welfare in the tourism industry is no small feat but we are committed to making a difference wherever we can and promise not only to go above and beyond the recommended industry guidelines but to help other businesses do the same. We also think that animal welfare doesn’t need to be a dry topic, so we promise to inject some fun into it wherever we can!