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At Exodus Travels, we’re not only passionate about travelling, but we’re avid believers in responsible travel. On World Tourism Day, it’s an important and exciting time for us to reflect and celebrate on the achievements Exodus Travels have made in line with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Tourism and Jobs: A better future for all
This year, the UN’s World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) have chosen the theme, Tourism and Jobs: A better future for all. As a community of like-minded responsible travellers, we work hard to contribute towards the empowerment of local people in the countries we visit, by offering opportunities for various groups and individuals who may not get the chance to experience during their lifetime.
Exodus Porter Projects
In Peru, most porters working on the Inca Trail never have the opportunity to visit the stunning ancient ruins of Machu Picchu. Typically, during their treks to the last campsite, Wiñayhuyna, the porters take a different path that goes directly to the town of Aguas Calientes where they return to their homes in Ollantaytambo.
Through our Porter Projects, Exodus Travels is committed to giving every porter who works for us on the Inca Trail the chance to experience Machu Picchu for themselves. And so, we organise for groups of our porters to receive a guided visit of the Lost City of the Incas in their native Quechua language.
“I am Isaias, and I am the porter´s chief. I never expected to visit Machu Picchu, but thanks to Exodus we had the opportunity to visit it. As a porter´s chief, I feel very proud that my team was able to visit the Inca site who was built by our ancestors.”
Exodus Travels have also sponsored the training and education of porters on Kilimanjaro for several years, including the support of multiple women. 10 years ago, it was unheard of to have female porters working on Kilimanjaro, but now everyone works collectively as a team, with women referring to fellow porters as their ‘sisters’.
Today, these women represent 18% of the workforce on Kilimanjaro, with many aspiring to become assistant guides and guides.
This year, Exodus Travels has offered scholarships for two female porters to progress in developing their careers, where they can advance their subject knowledge and practical skills to become independent leaders in the future.
We look forward to continuing providing scholarships that empower women through our porter projects.
In Northern India through our Ladakhi Project, we have funded the setting up and training for women’s groups to run three Eco Cafés in Hankar, Pensi and Kay, serving local food and drinks. UV water filters have also been supplied for two of the Cafés, permitting safe drinking water which can be sold to trekkers.
Exodus Travels also runs workshops enabling women to learn how to make felted souvenirs during the winter months that are then sold in high season throughout summer to travellers. By learning these skills, women in India can grow together as a community, by providing an income for themselves and their families.
Here at Exodus Travels, where possible we aim to use local leaders and guides while staying in locally owned accommodation and family businesses to make a positive impact on the communities we visit.
The Amalfi Coast, Italy is a prime example of this, as the Hotel Due Torri employs six family members alongside fifteen permanent residents as staff. During peak season, additional people from the local area are also hired, creating further employment opportunities for the community.
Responsible tourism has the potential to make a positive difference by providing employment opportunities and empowering local communities. At Exodus Travels, we are extremely passionate and dedicated to operating our tours responsibly and sustainably to ensure we are continuing to support the local communities we visit.
Find out more about our commitment to responsible travel on our tours below.