NUSADAILY.COM – JAKARTA – Britain’s Prince Harry is urging the travel industry to “organize and reorganize” its future after the crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, with a focus on creating a more sustainable model that does not adversely affect the environment and local communities.
Travel companies and airlines were hit by the pandemic, which has halted most global tourism businesses, while those who depend on tourists are also suffering.
The granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth said the difficulties experienced by people in tourist destinations showed the importance of tourism, but also highlighted the importance of reducing negative impacts.
“We know not travelling anymore is not an option,” the 36-year-old prince said in the foreword to Travalyst’s annual report, an initiative he launched in 2019 with the aim of making the travel industry more sustainable.
“Right in front of us, there is an opportunity to do something differently, do something better. Includes travel and tourism. As the industry bounces back from the crisis, there is an urgent need to reset and reorganize.”
Just like his father, Prince Charles, Harry actively voiced environmental concerns. He said it was clear the travel industry had not done much to tackle problems such as pollution and climate change before the pandemic occurred.
Harry has previously been criticised for encouraging people to care more about the environment while travelling, even though he went on a private jet.
But Harry says he rarely doesn’t board commercial planes, and does something to offset the carbon dioxide emissions caused by his travels.
Travalyst, an independent nonprofit backed by several major tourism industry companies including Booking.com, TripAdvisor and Visa, said the industry needs universal transparency in sustainability efforts, as well as to champion the success of local communities, destinations and operators. (mic)