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Friday, July 19, 2024

Tourism Cares Celebrates Global Meaningful Travel Anniversary with 2025 Thailand Summit

Tourism Cares - logoTourism Cares, a pioneering non-profit in sustainable tourism, is celebrating a remarkable milestone – the first anniversary of its global relaunch of the Meaningful Travel Map. This innovative digital platform has revolutionized the travel trade by enabling easy access to sustainable, community-led experiences, products, services, accommodations, and tours. Since its relaunch in 2023, the Meaningful Travel Map has expanded significantly, featuring over 250 purpose-driven organizations across North, Central, and South America, Europe, Asia, and Africa. This impressive growth is pivotal in promoting impactful and sustainable travel worldwide.

Reflecting on this achievement, John Sutherland, Senior Director of Community Impact at Tourism Cares, remarked, “We have seen a substantial rise in the demand for authentic travel experiences and a growing awareness of the need to mitigate tourism’s negative impacts. The Meaningful Travel Map has become an essential tool for destinations committed to showcasing sustainable offerings and community-led organizations, alongside traditional tourism products. This shift towards responsible travel is transforming the industry, offering travelers more meaningful and genuine experiences.”

A group of makers sell goods at a local street market in Chiang Mai, Thailand. - Credit - Tourism Authority of Thailand
A group of makers sell goods at a local Chiang Mai, Thailand street market.

To commemorate this milestone, Tourism Cares is excited to announce that the 2025 Global Meaningful Travel Summit will be held in Thailand. This prestigious event, organized in collaboration with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), is scheduled for fall 2025. The invitation-only summit will bring together travel industry leaders, including tour operators, travel advisors, media, and associations, to delve into sustainable travel practices and highlight the impactful work of local Thai community leaders and changemakers.

Greg Takehara, CEO of Tourism Cares, shared his enthusiasm, stating, “We are immensely proud of the progress we have made with our Meaningful Travel Program over the past year. Our Meaningful Travel Map and Global Meaningful Travel Summit are unique initiatives that foster direct connections with local communities, inspire through powerful stories, and drive actionable commitments towards sustainability. Partnering with TAT to host the 2025 summit in Thailand aligns perfectly with our mission to promote responsible tourism.”

Thailand, known for its commitment to sustainable tourism, is the ideal host for this global event. Pornpan Intratat, Director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand – Los Angeles office, expressed her excitement, “Thailand is honored to host the 2025 Global Meaningful Travel Summit. We believe in tourism’s power to drive positive change, and we look forward to sharing best practices and innovative ideas with global leaders. This summit is an excellent opportunity to showcase Thailand’s dedication to sustainable tourism and our local communities’ remarkable work.”

The announcement of the 2025 summit follows Thailand’s successful hosting of the first Meaningful Travel Familiarization (FAM) Tour in partnership with Tourism Cares in March 2024. The nine-day tour connected 14 travel industry representatives to meaningful experiences and local businesses in Bangkok and Krabi, marking the launch of the Meaningful Travel Map of Thailand, which initially highlights 15 Impact Partners.

Director Intratat noted, “We have received overwhelmingly positive feedback from our local partners about the Tourism Cares Meaningful Travel Program. The Tourism Authority of Thailand recognizes the importance of sustainable tourism for our industry’s future and its significant contributions to local communities. We are excited to continue our partnership with Tourism Cares in 2025 and beyond.”

For more information about Tourism Cares and its Meaningful Travel Map, visit tourismcares.org. Travel professionals interested in joining or sponsoring the 2025 Global Meaningful Travel Summit in Thailand can find more details at tourismcares.org/thailand.

 

 

 

Written by: Supaporn Pholrach

 

 

 

 

 

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