Tourism businesses can encourage sustainable behaviour among travellers

New research offers more incentive for tourism businesses to become more sustainable and share their efforts with international visitors, Tourism Industry Aotearoa says.

The research was carried out by the University of Canterbury and ChristchurchNZ, and funded by the Tourism Industry New Zealand Trust.

It found that international visitors to Canterbury believe environmental sustainability is important but tourism operators could be doing more to promote eco-friendly practices to travellers.


TIA Industry Strategy Manager Bruce Bassett says the research confirms the importance of tourism businesses acting sustainably.

“It provides evidence that visitors want to protect the environment in New Zealand but we need to make it easier for them to do so. If the tourism operator is sustainable then they can talk to the visitor about how they can support the business’ efforts.”

Almost 1200 New Zealand tourism businesses have now signed up to TIA’s New Zealand Tourism Sustainability Commitment, which is also supported by the Tourism Industry New Zealand Trust.

The TSC sets 14 commitments for tourism businesses to achieve environmental, economic, host community and visitor sustainability. They include objectives to reduce carbon; contribute to ecological restoration; reduce waste; and actively engage with visitors on the importance of restoring, protecting and enhancing New Zealand’s natural environment.

“By showing our visitors that we are taking responsibility for looking after our environment and communities, we can encourage them to follow our lead,” Mr Bassett says.

Go to to watch a video about the research.

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