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The Responsible Tourist and Traveller PDF Print E-mail


Dear traveller,

The “Responsible Tourist and Traveller” is a practical guide to help you make your trip an enriching experience.

The advice is based on the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism of the World Tourism Organization.


The Responsible Tourist and Traveller

Travel and tourism should be planned and practiced as a means of individual and collective fulfilment. When practiced with an open mind, it is an irreplaceable factor of self education, mutual tolerance and for learning about the legitimate differences between peoples and cultures and their diversity.

Everyone has a role to play creating responsible travel and tourism. Governments, business and communities must do all they can, but as a guest you can support this in many ways to make a difference:

1. Open your mind to other cultures and traditions – it will transform your experience, you will earn respect and be more readily welcomed by local people. Be tolerant and respect diversity – observe social and cultural traditions and practices.

2. Respect human rights. Exploitation in any form conflicts with the fundamental aims of tourism. The sexual exploitation of children is a crime punishable in the destination or at the offender’s home country.

3. Help preserve natural environments. Protect wildlife and habitats and do not purchase products made from endangered plants or animals.

4. Respect cultural resources. Activities should be conducted with respect for the artistic, archaeological and cultural heritage.

5. Your trip can contribute to economic and social development. Purchase local handicrafts and products to support the local economy using the principles of fair trade. Bargaining for goods should reflect an understanding of a fair wage.

6. Inform yourself about the destination’s current health situation and access to emergency and consular services prior to departure and be assured that your health and personal security will not be compromised. Make sure that your specific requirements (diet, accessibility, medical care) can be fulfilled before you decide to travel this destination.

7. Learn as much as possible about your destination and take time to understand the customs, norms and traditions. Avoid behaviour that could offend the local population.

8. Familiarize yourself with the laws so that you do not commit any act considered criminal by the law of the country visited. Refrain from all trafficking in illicit drugs, arms, antiques, protected species and products or substances that are dangerous or prohibited by national regulations.


Global Code of Ethics for Tourism, (WTO) PDF Print E-mail


The Global Code of Ethics for Tourism (GCET) is a comprehensive set of principles whose purpose is to guide stakeholders in tourism development: central and local governments, local communities, the tourism industry and its professionals, as well as visitors, both international and domestic.

The Code was called for in a resolution of the UNWTO General Assembly meeting in Istanbul in 1997. Over the following two years, a special committee for the preparation of the Global Code of Ethics was formed and a draft document was prepared by the Secretary General and the legal adviser to UNWTO in consultation with UNWTO Business Council, UNWTO's Regional Commissions, and the UNWTO Executive Council.

The United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development meeting in New York in April, 1999 endorsed the concept of the Code and requested UNWTO to seek further input from the private sector, non-governmental organizations and labour organizations. Written comments on the code were received from more than 70 UNWTO Member States and other entities. The resulting 10 point Global Code of Ethics for Tourism - the culmination of an extensive consultative process - was approved unanimously by the UNWTO General Assembly meeting in Santiago in October 1999.

The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), in its substantive session of July 2001, adopted a draft resolution on the Code of Ethics and called on the UN General Assembly to give recognition to the Code. The official recognition by the UN General Assembly to the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism came on 21 December 2001, through its resolution A/RES/56/212, by which it further encouraged the World Tourism Organization to promote an effective follow-up of the Code.

"The Global Code of Ethics for Tourism sets a frame of reference for the responsible and sustainable development of world tourism. It draws inspiration from many similar declarations and industry codes that have come before and it adds new thinking that reflects our changing society at the beginning of the 21st century.

With international tourism forecast to reach 1.6 billion arrivals by 2020, members of the World Tourism Organization believe that the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism is needed to help minimize the negative impacts of tourism on the environment and on cultural heritage while maximizing the benefits for residents of tourism destinations.

The Global Code of Ethics for Tourism is intended to be a living document. Read it. Circulate it widely. Participate in its implementation. Only with your cooperation can we safeguard the future of the tourism industry and expand the sector's contribution to economic prosperity, peace and understanding among all the nations of the world."

Francesco Frangialli, Secretary General of the World Tourism Organization

Although it is not a legally binding document, its Article 10 provides for a voluntary implementation mechanism through the recognition of the role of the World Committee on Tourism Ethics (WCTE), to which stakeholders may refer, on a voluntary basis, any matters concerning the application and interpretation of the Code.



adopted by resolution A/RES/406(XIII) at the thirteenth WTO General Assembly

(Santiago, Chile, 27 September - 1 October 1999).


We, Members of the World Tourism Organization (WTO), representatives of the world tourism industry, delegates of States, territories, enterprises, institutions and bodies that are gathered for the General Assembly at Santiago, Chile on this first day of October 1999, Reasserting the aims set out in Article 3 of the Statutes of the World Tourism Organization, and aware of the decisive and central” role of this Organization, as recognized by the General Assembly of the United Nations, in promoting and developing tourism with a view to contributing to economic development, International understanding, peace, prosperity and universal respect for, and observance of, human rights and fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion,

Firmly believing that, through the direct, spontaneous and non-mediatized contacts it engenders between men and women of different cultures and lifestyles, tourism represents a vital force for peace and a factor of friendship and understanding hmong the peoples of the world,

In keeping with the rationale of reconciling environmental protection, economic development and the fight against poverty in a sustainable manner, as formulated by the United Nations in 1992 at the “Earth Summit” of Rio de Janeiro and expressed in Agenda 21, adopted on that occasion,

Taking into account the swift and continued growth, both past and foreseeable, of the tourism activity, whether for leisure, business, culture, religious or health purposes, and its powerful effects, both positive and negative, on the environment, the economy and the society of both generating and receiving countries, on local communities and indigenous peoples, as well as on international relations and trade,

Aiming to promote responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism in the framework of the right of all persons to use their free time for leisure pursuits or travel with respect for the choices of society of all peoples,

But convinced that the world tourism industry as a whole has much to gain by operating in an environment that favours the market economy, private Enterprise and free trade and that serves to optimize its beneficial effects on the creation of wealth and employment,

Also firmly convinced that, provided a number of principles and a certain number of rules are observed, responsible and sustainable tourism is by no means incompatible with the growing liberalization of the conditions governing trade in services and under whose aegis the enterprises of this sector operate and that it is possible to reconcile in this sector economy and ecology, environment and development, openness to international trade and protection of social and cultural identities,

Considering that, with such an approach, all the stakeholders in tourism development, national, regional and local administrations, enterprises, business associations, workers in the sector, nongovernmental organizations and bodies of all kinds belonging to the tourism industry, as well as host communities, the media and the tourists themselves, have different albeit interdependent responsibilities in the individual and societal development of tourism and that the formulation of their individual rights and duties will contribute to meeting this aim,

Committed, in keeping with the aims pursued by the World Tourism Organization itself since adopting resolution 364(XII) at its General Assembly of 1997 (Istanbul), to promote a genuine partnership between the public and private stakeholders in tourism development, and wishing to see a partnership and cooperation of the same kind extend, in an open and balanced way, to the relations between generating and receiving countries and their respective tourism industries,

Following up on the Manila Declarations of 1980 on World Tourism and of 1997 on the Social Impact of Tourism, as well as on the Tourism Bill of Rights and the Tourist Code adopted at Sofia in 1985 under the aegis of WTO,

But believing that these instruments should be complemented by a set of interdependent principles for their interpretation and application on which the stakeholders in tourism development should model their conduct at the dawn of the twenty-first century,

Using, for the purposes of this instrument, the definitions and classifications applicable to travel, and especially the concepts of “visitor”, “tourist” and “tourism”, as adopted by the Ottawa International Conference, held from 24 to 28 June 1991 and approved, in 1993, by the United Nations Statistical Commission at its twentyseventh session,

Referring in particular to the following instruments:

  • Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 10 December 1948;
  • International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of 16 December 1966;
  • International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 16 December 1966;
  • Warsaw Convention on Air Transport of 12 October 1929;
  • Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation of 7 December 1944, and the Tokyo, The Hague and Montreal Conventions in relation thereto;
  • Convention on Customs Facilities for Tourism of 4 July 1954 and related Protocol;
  • Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage of 23 November 1972;
  • Manila Declaration on World Tourism of 10 October 1980;
  • Resolution of the Sixth General Assembly of WTO (Sofia) adopting the Tourism Bill of Rights and Tourist Code of 26 September 1985;
  • Convention on the Rights of the Child
  • of 20 November 1989;
  • Resolution of the Ninth General Assembly of WTO (Buenos Aires) concerning in particular travel facilitation and the safety and security of tourists of 4 October 1991;
  • Rio Declaration on the Environment and Development of 13 June 1992;
  • General Agreement on Trade in Services of 15 April 1994;
  • Convention on Biodiversity of 6 January 1995;
  • Resolution of the Eleventh General Assembly of WTO (Cairo) on the prevention of organized sex tourism of 22 October 1995;
  • Stockholm Declaration of 28 August 1996 against the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children;
  • Manila Declaration on the Social Impact of Tourism of 22 May 1997;
  • Conventions and recommendations adopted by the International Labour Organization in the area of collective conventions, prohibition of forced labour and child labour, defence of the rights of indigenous peoples, and equal treatment and non-discrimination in the work place;

affirm the right to tourism and the freedom of tourist movements, state our wish to promote an equitable, responsible and sustainable world tourism order, whose benefits will be shared by all sectors of society in the context of an open and liberalized international economy, and solemnly adopt to these ends the principles of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism.

Article 1.- Tourism's contribution to mutual understanding and respect between peoples and societies

1. The understanding and promotion of the ethical values common to humanity, with an attitude of tolerance and respect for the diversity of religious, philosophical and moral beliefs, are both the foundation and the consequence of responsible tourism; stakeholders in tourism development and tourists themselves should observe the social and cultural traditions and practices of all peoples, including those of minorities and indigenous peoples and to recognize their worth;

2. Tourism activities should be conducted in harmony with the attributes and traditions of the host regions and countries and in respect for their laws, practices and customs;

3. The host communities, on the one hand, and local professionals, on the other, should acquaint themselves with and respect the tourists who visit them and find out about their lifestyles, tastes and expectations; the education and training imparted to professionals contribute to a hospitable welcome;

4. It is the task of the public authorities to provide protection for tourists and visitors and their belongings; they must pay particular attention to the safety of foreign tourists owing to the particular vulnerability they may have; they should facilitate the introduction of specific means of information, prevention, security, insurance and assistance consistent with their needs; any attacks, assaults, kidnappings or threats against tourists or workers in the tourism industry, as well as the wilful destruction of tourism facilities or of elements of cultural or natural heritage should be severely condemned and punished in accordance with their respective national laws;

5. When travelling, tourists and visitors should not commit any criminal act or any act considered criminal by the laws of the country visited and abstain from any conduct felt to be offensive or injurious by the local populations, or likely to damage the local environment; they should refrain from all trafficking in illicit drugs, arms, antiques, protected species and products and substances that are dangerous or prohibited by national regulations;

6. Tourists and visitors have the responsibility to acquaint themselves, even before their departure, with the characteristics of the countries they are preparing to visit; they must be aware of the health and security risks inherent in any travel outside their usual environment and behave in such a way as to minimize those risks.

Article 2.- Tourism as a vehicle for individual and collective fulfilment

1. Tourism, the activity most frequently associated with rest and relaxation, sport and access to culture and nature, should be planned and practised as a privileged means of individual and collective fulfilment; when practised with a sufficiently open mind, it is an irreplaceable factor of self-education, mutual tolerance and for learning about the legitimate differences between peoples and cultures and their diversity;

2. Tourism activities should respect the equality of men and women; they should promote human rights and, more particularly, the individual rights of the most vulnerable groups, notably children, the elderly, the handicapped, ethnic minorities and indigenous peoples;

3. The exploitation of human beings in any form, particularly sexual, especially when applied to children, conflicts with the fundamental aims of tourism and is the negation of tourism; as such, in accordance with international law, it should be energetically combatted with the cooperation of all the States concerned and penalized without concession by the national legislation of both the countries visited and the countries of the perpetrators of these acts, even when they are carried out abroad;

4. Travel for purposes of religion, health, education and cultural or linguistic exchanges are particularly beneficial forms of tourism, which deserve encouragement;

5. The introduction into curricula of education about the value of tourist exchanges, their economic, social and cultural benefits, and also their risks, should be encouraged.

Article 3.- Tourism, a factor of sustainable development

1. All the stakeholders in tourism development should safeguard the natural environment with a view to achieving sound, continuous and sustainable economic growth geared to satisfying equitably the needs and aspirations of present and future generations;

2. All forms of tourism development that are conducive to saving rare and precious resources, in particular water and energy, as well as avoiding so far as possible waste production, should be given priority and encouraged by national, regional and local public authorities;

3. The staggering in time and space of tourist and visitor flows, particularly those resulting from paid leave and school holidays, and a more even distribution of holidays should be sought so as to reduce the pressure of tourism activity on the environment and enhance its beneficial impact on the tourism industry and the local economy;

4. Tourism infrastructure should be designed and tourism activities programmed in such a way as to protect the natural heritage composed of ecosystems and biodiversity and to preserve endangered species of wildlife; the stakeholders in tourism development, and especially professionals, should agree to the imposition of limitations or constraints on their activities when these are exercised in particularly sensitive areas: desert, polar or high mountain regions, coastal areas, tropical forests or wetlands, propitious to the creation of nature reserves or protected areas;

5. Nature tourism and ecotourism are recognized as being particularly conducive to enriching and enhancing the standing of tourism, provided they respect the natural heritage and local populations and are in keeping with the carrying capacity of the sites;

Article 4.- Tourism, a user of the cultural heritage of mankind and contributor to its enhancement

1. Tourism resources belong to the common heritage of mankind; the communities in whose territories they are situated have particular rights and obligations to them;

2. Tourism policies and activities should be conducted with respect for the artistic, archaeological and cultural heritage, which they should protect and pass on to future generations; particular care should be devoted to preserving and upgrading monuments, shrines and museums as well as archaeological and historic sites which must be widely open to tourist visits; encouragement should be given to public access to privately-owned cultural property and monuments, with respect for the rights of their owners, as well as to religious buildings, without prejudice to normal needs of worship;

3. Financial resources derived from visits to cultural sites and monuments should, at least in part, be used for the upkeep, safeguard, development and embellishment of this heritage;

4. Tourism activity should be planned in such a way as to allow traditional cultural products, crafts and folklore to survive and flourish, rather than causing them to degenerate and become standardized;

Article 5.- Tourism, a beneficial activity for host countries and communities

1. Local populations should be associated with tourism activities and share equitably in the economic, social and cultural benefits they generate, and particularly in the creation of direct and indirect jobs resulting from them;

2. Tourism policies should be applied in such a way as to help to raise the standard of living of the populations of the regions visited and meet their needs; the planning and architectural approach to and operation of tourism resorts and accommodation should aim to integrate them, to the extent possible, in the local economic and social fabric; where skills are equal, priority should be given to local manpower;

3. Special attention should be paid to the specific problems of coastal areas and island territories and to vulnerable rural or mountain regions, for which tourism often represents a rare opportunity for development in the face of the decline of traditional economic activities;

4. Tourism professionals, particularly investors, governed by the regulations laid down by the public authorities, should carry out studies of the impact of their development projects on the environment and natural surroundings; they should also deliver, with the greatest transparency and objectivity, information on their future programmes and their foreseeable repercussions and foster dialogue on their contents with the populations concerned;

Article 6.- Obligations of stakeholders in tourism development

1. Tourism professionals have an obligation to provide tourists with objective and honest information on their places of destination and on the conditions of travel, hospitality and stays; they should ensure that the contractual clauses proposed to their customers are readily understandable as to the nature, price and quality of the services they commit themselves to providing and the financial compensation payable by them in the event of a unilateral breach of contract on their part;

2. Tourism professionals, insofar as it depends on them, should show concern, in co-operation with the public authorities, for the security and safety, accident prevention, health protection and food safety of those who seek their services; likewise, they should ensure the existence of suitable systems of insurance and assistance; they should accept the reporting obligations prescribed by national regulations and pay fair compensation in the event of failure to observe their contractual obligations

3. Tourism professionals, so far as this depends on them, should contribute to the cultural and spiritual fulfilment of tourists and allow them, during their travels, to practise their religions;

4. The public authorities of the generating States and the host countries, in cooperation with the professionals concerned and their associations, should ensure that the necessary mechanisms are in place for the repatriation of tourists in the event of the bankruptcy of the enterprise that organized their travel;

5. Governments have the right – and the duty - especially in a crisis, to inform their nationals of the difficult circumstances, or even the dangers they may encounter during their travels abroad; it is their responsibility however to issue such information without prejudicing in an unjustified or exaggerated manner the tourism industry of the host countries and the interests of their own operators; the contents of travel advisories should therefore be discussed beforehand with the authorities of the host countries and the professionals concerned; recommendations formulated should be strictly proportionate to the gravity of the situations encountered and confined to the geographical areas where the insecurity has arisen; such advisories should be qualified or cancelled as soon as a return to normality permits;

6. The press, and particularly the specialized travel press and the other media, including modern means of electronic communication, should issue honest and balanced information on events and situations that could influence the flow of tourists; they should also provide accurate and reliable information to the consumers of tourism services; the new communication and electronic commerce technologies should also be developed and used for this purpose; as is the case for the media, they should not in any way promote sex tourism;

Article 7.- Right to tourism

1. The prospect of direct and personal access to the discovery and enjoyment of the planet’s resources constitutes a right equally open to all the world’s inhabitants; the increasingly extensive participation in national and international tourism should be regarded as one of the best possible expressions of the sustained growth of free time, and obstacles should not be placed in its way;

2. The universal right to tourism must be regarded as the corollary of the right to rest and leisure, including reasonable limitation of working hours and periodic holidays with pay, guaranteed by Article 24 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 7.d of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights;

3. Social tourism, and in particular associative tourism, which facilitates widespread access to leisure, travel and holidays, should be developed with the support of the public authorities;

4. Family, youth, student and senior tourism and tourism for people with disabilities, should be encouraged and facilitated;

Article 8.- Liberty of tourist movements

1. Tourists and visitors should benefit, in compliance with international law and national legislation, from the liberty to move within their countries and from one State to another, in accordance with Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; they should have access to places of transit and stay and to tourism and cultural sites without being subject to excessive formalities or discrimination;

2. Tourists and visitors should have access to all available forms of communication, internal or external; they should benefit from prompt and easy access to local administrative, legal and health services; they should be free to contact the consular representatives of their countries of origin in compliance with the diplomatic conventions in force;

3. Tourists and visitors should benefit from the same rights as the citizens of the country visited concerning the confidentiality of the personal data and information concerning them, especially when these are stored electronically;

4. Administrative procedures relating to border crossings whether they fall within the competence of States or result from international agreements, such as visas or health and customs formalities, should be adapted, so far as possible, so as to facilitate to the maximum freedom of travel and widespread access to international tourism; agreements between groups of countries to harmonize and simplify these procedures should be encouraged; specific taxes and levies penalizing the tourism industry and undermining its competitiveness should be gradually phased out or corrected;

5. So far as the economic situation of the countries from which they come permits, travellers should have access to allowances of convertible currencies needed for their travels;

Article 9.- Rights of the workers and entrepreneurs in the tourism industry

1. The fundamental rights of salaried and self-employed workers in the tourism industry and related activities, should be guaranteed under the supervision of the national and local administrations, both of their States of origin and of the host countries with particular care, given the specific constraints linked in particular to the seasonality of their activity, the global dimension of their industry and the flexibility often required of them by the nature of their work;

2. Salaried and self-employed workers in the tourism industry and related activities have the right and the duty to acquire appropriate initial and continuous training; they should be given adequate social protection; job insecurity should be limited so far as possible; and a specific status, with particular regard to their social welfare, should be offered to seasonal workers in the sector;

3. Any natural or legal person, provided he, she or it has the necessary abilities and skills, should be entitled to develop a professional activity in the field of tourism under existing national laws; entrepreneurs and investors - especially in the area of small and medium-sized enterprises - should be entitled to free access to the tourism sector with a minimum of legal or administrative restrictions;

4. Exchanges of experience offered to executives and workers, whether salaried or not, from different countries, contributes to foster the development of the world tourism industry; these movements should be facilitated so far as possible in compliance with the applicable national laws and international conventions;

5. As an irreplaceable factor of solidarity in the development and dynamic growth of international exchanges, multinational enterprises of the tourism industry should not exploit the dominant positions they sometimes occupy; they should avoid becoming the vehicles of cultural and social models artificially imposed on the host communities; in exchange for their freedom to invest and trade which should be fully recognized, they should involve themselves in local development, avoiding, by the excessive repatriation of their profits or their induced imports, a reduction of their contribution to the economies in which they are established;

6. Partnership and the establishment of balanced relations between enterprises of generating and receiving countries contribute to the sustainable development of tourism and an equitable distribution of the benefits of its growth;

Article 10.- Implementation of the principles of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism

1. The public and private stakeholders in tourism development should cooperate in the implementation of these principles and monitor their effective application;

2. The stakeholders in tourism development should recognize the role of international institutions, among which the World Tourism Organization ranks first, and non-governmental organizations with competence in the field of tourism promotion and development, the protection of human rights, the environment or health, with due respect for the general principles of international law;

3. The same stakeholders should demonstrate their intention to refer any disputes concerning the application or interpretation of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism for conciliation to an impartial third body known as the World Committee on Tourism Ethics.


Sustainable Tourism PDF Print E-mail


To understand what sustainable tourism is, we must clarify in advance the concept of sustainable development, which establishes and / or frames the guidelines of all human activities with regard to the environmental, cultural and economic sustainability.

Sustainable Development

Sustainable, term defined as, "Said as a process that can maintain itself."

The term “sustainable development” is applied to the socio-economic development and its usage was formalized for the first time in the document known as the Brundtland Report published in 1987, as a result of the work of the World Commission on Environment and Development of United Nations, created in United Nations General Assembly in 1983.

The definition given by the committee, for “sustainable development”, was the one assumed the principle number three (3) of the Rio Declaration of 1992:

"Meeting the needs of present generations without compromising the ability of the future ones to meet their own needs."

Brundtland Report. It is a socio-economic document drawn up by various nations in 1987 for the United Nations, UN, by a commission headed by Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland. Originally it was called Our Common Future. In this report, as formalized and defined the term “sustainable development”, it has been involved since then a major change in regard to the idea of sustainability, primarily ecological, to a framework that emphasizes the economic and social development.

There were identified as target purposes of sustainable development the following:

1.To satisfy human needs.

2.Carry out two types of restrictions: a) Ecological, that is towards the preservation of our planet Earth, and b) Moral: renounce consumption levels to which not all individuals can aspire.

3.To achieve the economic growth in those places where there has not been met the needs mentioned before, that is, in poor countries.

4.To control population, referring mainly to birth rates.

5.To preserve the natural systems that sustain life on Earth.

6.To conserve of ecosystems so they would be subordinate to human welfare, since not all ecosystems can be preserved in its virgin state. The use of non-renewable resources should be as efficient as possible.


Sustainable development requires to understand that inaction will bring consequences, so that, institutional structures must be changed to encourage individual behaviors in relation to the objectives described above.

The field of sustainable development is conceptually divided into three parts: the environmental, economical, and social development. It is considered the social aspect because of the relationship between social welfare with the environment and the economic progress.

The needs of society, such as food, health, clothing, housing, and work, must be satisfied, because if poverty were usual, the world would be directed to disasters of various kinds, including ecological. Also, development and social welfare must be limited by the level of technology, resources and the capacity of the environment to absorb the impact of human activity.

Sustainable Development in Dominicana

In the country since 1995, has been carried out an initiative called "Dominicana, a Country Project towards Sustainable Development" integral project of sustainable development, designed, planned, and implemented by citizens, cooperation a non governmental organizations, private sector and public authorities, under the leadership of the Council for Sustainable Development and Promotion of the Dominican Republic, CONDESPI, (Consejo para el Desarrollo Sostenible y Promoción de la República Dominican, CONDESPI, in Spanish), which has defined the concept of sustainable development as follows:

"It is the developing desired by our societies, which should be governed globally, depending on how accurate are the decisions we take today and what turns out to be efficient in achieving the goals set by maintaining the environment, social and economic balance, to ensure the satisfaction of our present needs without affecting the capacity and ability of future generations to meet their own needs."

"This Sustainable Development may be achieved only within the framework of a model where freedom, equity and justice are practiced, based on participation and integration of citizens committed to building their societies and / or nations on an individual basis which will hoist, increase and respect the highest principles and values of our civilization."

"The acceptance, implementation and progress of this concept and / or model are subjected to technological advances, knowledge in its favor, and its proper and adequate dissemination. In particular, we must remove the misperception that the sustainable development means action to protect the environment and not for what it is really its goal: the economic growth and progress in balance with the development or social welfare and in harmony with the environment."

This project strives to raise awareness and gain the acceptance of the concept, motivating and raising awareness in the Dominican citizens to accept our responsibility and patriotic duty to participate and integrate all actions necessary to improve our life quality, through the respect for environment, the right to social development, and the right to a growth and economic progress, all in a balanced manner.

In this way enhance the Dominican self-conscious and promotion of our country, within the framework of a democratic, moral, ethical, equity and lawful, mutual respect and global solidarity model, fully committed to the development of mankind.

Sustainable Tourism

Is defined as those activities for leisure, business or other reasons, carried out by people during their travel and stay in places outside their usual environment, which are conducted in a manner that respects the natural, cultural and social environment and the values of a community. These allow to enjoy a positive exchange of experiences between residents and visitors, where the relationship between tourists and the community is fair and benefits of tourism are distributed fairly, and where visitors have a truly participatory attitude in their travel experience.

Logically, and notwithstanding the above definition could be interpreted in the field of tourism, sustainable tourism is one that combines in its implementation, both the offer and the management or operation of the activity, framed under the concept of sustainable development or sustainability.

The tourism as a powerful tool for development, can and should participate actively in the strategy of sustainable development. A good tourism management requires ensuring the sustainability of the resources on which it depends.

Its origin dates back to the years of 1970 when there where new approaches to the tourism theme from critical environmental views, but it was not until 1991 when it was carried out the forty-first congress of the International Association of Scientific Experts in Tourism (Association Internationale d'experts scientifiques du tourisme, AIEST, in French) under the title "Qualitative Tourism", that raised the complexity of the analysis of sustainability in tourism, emerging that the original definition of Sustainable Tourism is one that maintains a balance between the social, economic and ecological interest, integrating the economic and leisure activities with the purpose of reaching the conservation of natural and cultural values.

Its rise comes from the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, when it began to implement Agenda 21, the agenda of the Organization of the United Nations (UN) to promote the sustainable development at global. National and local levels, in which it would be the axis of any strategy for the sectors of the economy and tourism, in this case, which led to the spread of information and input from different areas in favor of its sustainability.

In 1983, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), in the document entitled "Tourism in 2000 and beyond qualitative aspects" defined the concept of Sustainable Tourism:

"Sustainable tourism caters to the needs of present tourists and host regions while protecting and promoting opportunities for the future. It is conceived as a way to manage all the resources so as to meet the economic needs, Social and aesthetic, while respecting the cultural integrity, essential ecological processes, biological diversity and the systems that sustain life."

In 1994, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) considered fundamental to the implementation of Agenda 21 at tourist centers, the following requirements, waste minimization, conservation and energy management, management of water resources, the control of dangerous substances, transport, urban planning and land management, environmental commitment of politicians and citizens, and program designed for sustainability and partnership for sustainable tourism development.

In 1995, it was published by the World Charter for Sustainable Tourism, which sets out 18 principles that seek to lay the foundations for a global tourism strategy based on sustainable development. The Charter of Lanzarote implies acceptance of the bonds of sustainability, conservation, and development of resources, and the central role of tourism for development, at global, national and local levels.

Charter for Sustainable Tourism

1st World Conference on Sustainable Tourism

Lanzarote, Canary Islans , Spain, 24 - 29.04.1995


We, the participants at the World Conference on Sustainable Tourism, meeting in Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain, on 27-28 April 1995,


Mindful that tourism, as a worldwide phenomenon, touches the highest and deepest aspirations of all people and is also an important element of socioeconomic and political development in many countries.


Recognizing that tourism is ambivalent, since it can contribute positively to socioeconomic and cultural achievement, while at the same time it can contribute to the degradation of the environment and the loss of local identity, and should therefore be approached with a global methodology.


Mindful that the resources on which tourism is based are fragile and that there is a growing demand for improved environmental quality.


Recognizing that tourism affords the opportunity to travel and to know other cultures, and that the development of tourism can help promote closer ties and peace among peoples, creating a conscience that is respectful of the diversity of culture and life styles.


Recalling the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the General Assembly of United Nations, and the various United Nations declarations and regional conventions on tourism, the environment, the conservation of cultural heritage and on sustainable development.


Guided by the principles set forth in the Rio Declaration on the Environment and Development and the recommendations arising from Agenda 21.


Recalling previous declarations on tourism, such as the Manila Declaration on World Tourism, the Hague Declaration and the Tourism Bill of Rights and Tourist Code.


Recognizing the need to develop a tourism that meets economic expectations and environmental requirements, and respects not only the social and physical structure of destinations, but also the local population.


Considering it a priority to protect and reinforce the human dignity of both local communities and tourists.


Mindful of the need to establish effective alliances among the principal actors in the field of tourism so as to fulfill the hope of a tourism that is more responsible towards our common heritage.


APPEAL to the international community and, in particular, URGE governments, other public authorities, decision makers and professionals in the field of tourism, public and private associations and institutions whose activities are related to tourism, and tourists themselves, to adopt the principles and objectives of the Declaration that follows:


1. Tourism development shall be based on criteria of sustainability, which means that it must be ecologically bearable in the long term, as well as economically viable, and ethically and socially equitable for local communities.


Sustainable development is a guided process which envisages global management of resources so as to ensure their viability, thus enabling our natural and cultural capital, including protected areas, to be preserved. As a powerful instrument of development, tourism can and should participate actively in the sustainable development strategy. A requirement of sound management of tourism is that the sustainability of the resources on which it depends must be guaranteed.


2. Tourism should contribute to sustainable development and be integrated with the natural, cultural and human environment; it must respect the fragile balances that characterize many tourist destinations, in particular small islands and environmentally sensitive areas. Tourism should ensure an acceptable evolution as regards its influence on natural resources, biodiversity and the capacity for assimilation of any impacts and residues produced.


3. Tourism must consider its effects on the cultural heritage and traditional elements, activities and dynamics of each local community. Recognition of these local factors and support for the identity, culture and interests of the local community must at all times play a central role in the formulation of tourism strategies, particularly in developing countries.


4. The active contribution of tourism to sustainable development necessarily presupposes the solidarity, mutual respect and participation of all the actors, both public and private, implicated in the process, and must be based on efficient cooperation mechanisms at all levels: local, national, regional and international.


5. The conservation, protection and appreciation of the worth of the natural and cultural heritage afford a privileged area for cooperation. This approach implies that all those responsible must take upon themselves a true challenge, that of cultural, technological and professional innovation, and must also undertake a major effort to create and implement integrated planning and management instruments.


6. Quality criteria both for the preservation of the tourist destination and for the capacity to satisfy tourists, determined jointly with local communities and informed by the principles of sustainable development, should represent priority objectives in the formulation of tourism strategies and projects.


7. To participate in sustainable development, tourism must be based on the diversity of opportunities offered by the local economy. It should be fully integrated into and contribute positively to local economic development.


8. All options for tourism development must serve effectively to improve the quality of life of all people and must influence the sociocultural enrichment of each destination.


9. Governments and the competent authorities, with the participation of NGOs and local communities, shall undertake actions aimed at integrating the planning of tourism as a contribution to sustainable development.


10. In recognition of economic and social cohesion among the peoples of the world as a fundamental principle of sustainable development, it is urgent that measures be promoted to permit a more equitable distribution of the benefits and burdens of tourism. This implies a change of consumption patterns and the introduction of pricing methods which allow environmental costs to be internationalized.


Governments and multilateral organizations should prioritize and strengthen direct and indirect aid to tourism projects which contribute to improving the quality of the environment. Within this context, it is necessary to explore thoroughly the application of internationally harmonized economic, legal and fiscal instruments to ensure the sustainable use of resources in tourism.


11. Environmentally and culturally vulnerable spaces, both now and in the future, shall be given special priority in the matter of technical cooperation and financial aid for sustainable tourism development. Similarly, special treatment should be given to zones that have been degraded by obsolete and high impact tourism models.


12. The promotion of alternative forms of tourism that are compatible with the principles of sustainable development, together with the encouragement of diversification represent a guarantee of stability in the medium and the long term. In this respect there is a need, for many small islands and environmentally sensitive areas in particular, to actively pursue and strengthen regional cooperation.


13. Governments, industry, authorities, and tourism-related NGOs should promote and participate in the creation of open networks for research, dissemination of information and transfer of appropriate knowledge on tourism and environmentally sustainable tourism technologies.


14. The establishment of a sustainable tourism policy necessarily requires the support and promotion of environmentally-compatible tourism management systems, feasibility studies for the transformation of the sector, as well as the implementation of demonstration projects and the development of international cooperation programs.


15. The travel industry, together with bodies and NGOs whose activities are related to tourism, shall draw up specific frameworks for positive and preventive actions to secure sustainable tourism development and establish programs to support the implementation of such practices. They shall monitor achievements, report on results and exchange their experiences.


16. Particular attention should be paid to the role and the environmental repercussions of transport in tourism, and to the development of economic instruments designed to reduce the use of non-renewable energy and to encourage recycling and minimization of residues in resorts.


17. The adoption and implementation of codes of conduct conducive to sustainability by the principal actors involved in tourism, particularly industry, are fundamental if tourism is to be sustainable. Such codes can be effective instruments for the development of responsible tourism activities.


18. All necessary measures should be implemented in order to inform and promote awareness among all parties involved in the tourism industry, at local, national, regional and international level, with regard to the contents and objectives of the Lanzarote Conference.


Final Resolution


The World Conference on Sustainable Tourism considers it vital to make the following public statements:


1. The Conference recommends State and regional governments to draw up urgently plans of action for sustainable development applied to tourism, in consonance with the principles set out in this Charter.


2. The Conference agrees to refer the Charter for Sustainable Tourism to the Secretary General of the United Nations, so that it may be taken up by the bodies and agencies of the United Nations system, as well as by international organizations which have cooperation agreements with the United Nations, for submission to the General Assembly.


Resolution On Follow Up Committee


Following the World Conference on Sustainable Tourism and the adoption of the World Charter for Sustainable Tourism, and in view of the importance of the agreements reached, the need is seen to plan for the future. Continuity of the line of work and the collaboration already achieved is of vital importance and, in order to consolidate the work achieved thus far, it is appropriate and necessary to follow up and implement this Charter for Sustainable Tourism.


With this objective in mind, the following agreement is adopted:


1. It is agreed to create a Follow-Up Committee for the Charter and its Plan of Action. Said Committee shall comprise the international institutions and agencies making up the Conference Organizing Committee.


2. The Follow-Up Committee shall oversee the dissemination and circulation of the Charter and the best possible application thereof. It will also undertake activities to guarantee its continuity and the detection of critical situations, and encourage all kinds of public and private entities with a view to assuring sound application and use of the principles of sustainable tourism.


3. This Committee shall promote the carrying out of studies, projects and actions aimed at creating exemplary situations which may serve as points of reference for each major problem on the world level, thus constituting the best form of application of the Charter in relation to the principles of sustainable development.


4. This Committee will carry forward and follow up the agreements reached by the Conference and will take on responsibility for circulating and presenting the present Charter to the protagonists of Sustainable Development in tourism, including representatives of the tourism industry, governmental organizations, NGOs, agencies of the United Nations, and other international bodies.

In 1999, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) publishes the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism, adopted by resolution A/RES/406 (XIII) of the Thirteenth General Assembly of WTO held in Santiago, Chile, 27.09 - 01.10.1999. This creates a framework for responsible and sustainable development of world tourism. Its text was inspired by numerous declarations and industry codes that preceded it, and that adds new thoughts that reflect the permanent change in our society in the early 21st century.
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