Impact Tourism

Impact Tourism Handbook (2020)

As an update to CREST's 2011 Traveler's Philanthropy Handbook, our 2020 Impact Tourism Handbook takes a deeper look at the thoughtful and innovative ways that impact tourism is materializing around the world. In releasing it in a free, digital format on our website, CREST seeks to make it widely available to all stakeholders interested in developing or supporting responsible impact tourism programs. This Impact Tourism Handbook was made possible by generous financial support from Elevate Destinations, Hilton, Holbrook Travel, and Overseas Adventure Travel.

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Grenada, West Indies Travelers' Philanthropy Program

CREST worked with the Grenada Hotel & Tourism Association (GHTA) in 2015 to develop a destination-wide Travelers' Philanthropy program, to strengthen and diversify the GHTA's tourism marketing tools and strategies. As part of the project, CREST facilitated a learning exchange for five tourism officials from Grenada to visit Monteverde, Costa Rica, to see and learn firsthand from their successful travelers' philanthropy program - the Monteverde Community Fund.

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CARE for the Cape & Islands Travelers' Philanthropy Program

Directed by a past CREST intern, CARE for the Cape & Islands is a destination wide travelers' philanthropy program in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, established in 2012. CARE's mission is "inspiring stewardship to preserve and protect our natural environment, cultural and historical treasures." CARE seeks to create opportunities for visitors, residents, and the travel industry to donate their "time, talent, and treasure" to support local organizations working to preserve and protect the exquisite wildlife habitats, history, and culture of this popular vacation destination. CREST is the proud fiscal sponsor of CARE for the Cape & Islands.

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Travelers' Philanthropy Handbook (2011)

This seminal 2011 CREST publication marks the first comprehensive publication on travelers' philanthropy. This 250-page Handbook includes original essays, case studies, and surveys by some 30 exerts, plus a Foreword by Nobel Peace Laureate, Dr. Wangari Maathai. The Handbook covers the principles, origins and growth of travelers' philanthropy and offers practical 'how to' advice, do's and don'ts, and best practices for businesses, community organizations, and travelers interested in developing or participating in travel 'give back' programs.

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Study to Assess Interest in Destination-Wide Traveler's Philanthropy Program in the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica

CREST and Fundación Corcovado carried out a field project in 2011 to assess interest in creating a destination-wide travelers' philanthropy program for the Osa Peninsula. In a series of workshops, experts from the two organizations trained over 100 tourism and community leaders on the concepts of travelers' philanthropy. However, the project concluded that, unlike Monteverde which is a smaller and more homogeneous community, it will be necessary to build such an initiative slowly and to take into account the sub-regions within the Osa Peninsula.

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Monteverde, Costa Rica Travelers' Philanthropy Program

CREST and the Monteverde Institute launched the first-ever destination-wide Travelers' Philanthropy program in Monteverde, Costa Rica, in 2010. Businesses, travelers, and NGO's came together to "leave more than just a foot print", supporting environmental and social/cultural projects with visitor donations collected at hotels, restaurants and gift shops. The Monteverde program serves as a model for other destinations hoping to harness travel giving for the betterment of the community.

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Dos and Don'ts of Travel Giving

This 2009 publication shares guidelines for travel giving. Travelers' desire to help, interact, and learn from those they meet during their holiday is clearly positive. However, there are sometimes unintended consequences from these good intentions. Misguided contributions can perpetuate cycles of dependency, cause corruption, burden communities with unwanted or inappropriate donations, and require recipients to spend time and resources to handle "gifts" they didn't request or cannot use.

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Tourism in the Developing World: Promoting Peace and Reducing Poverty

The following four essays were prepared in 2008 as background documents for the USIP Special Report, "Tourism in the Developing World: Promoting Peace and Reducing Poverty." A grant from USIP provided funds for these s and Aditi Chanchani from Equations to attend CREST's Travelers' Philanthropy Conference, held in Arusha, Tanzania in December 2008.

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Travelers' Philanthropy: Helping Communities Build Economic Assets & Sustain Environmental & Cultural Resources in an Era of Rapid Globalization

In all regions of the world, a new source of international development aid called " Travelers' Philanthropy" is evolving. Civic-minded travelers and travel businesses are giving time, talent and financial resources to further the well-being of the places that they visit. This report, from when CREST started researching this subject in 2004, looks at why Travelers' Philanthropy is important and how to build the movement.

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