German National Tourist Board awarded “Green Globe”

German National Tourist Board first national tourist board awarded “Green Globe” Certificate

International sustainability-certificate for the DZT

London, 20th November 2013 – the German National Tourist Board (DZT) has been awarded the prestigious “Green Globe” Certificate – the first national tourist board ever to receive this renowned international recognition of sustainability in travel. “We have been promoting sustainability as a core marketing theme for travel destination Germany for many years and regard it as one of the principle responsibilities of our organisation” says Petra Hedorfer, CEO German National Tourist Board. “Our goal is the international positioning of Germany as a sustainable travel destination”. The Green Globe Certification Standard assesses the sustainability performance of travel and tourism businesses based on the combined three pillars of environmentally-friendly practise, social responsibility and economic profitability.

Destination Germany as international role model

The criteria for the Green Globe-Certification include an organisation’s performance in energy,logo-german-tourist-board waste and water management and in addition, its interaction within society and the environment as a whole. Beyond these basic criteria, the DZT impressed Green Globe’s independent auditors with, for example, its consistent emphasis of sustainability within its strategic activities. The DZT also compiled an exclusive sustainability strategy, encompassing a dedicated communication strategy, internal sustainable initiatives and product development.

Important aspects in the positioning of Germany as a sustainable travel destination have been its achievements within the realm of “Green Meetings”, including high levels of consistent customer service and operational standards. With its substantial involvement in accessible travel and support for German partners in creating sustainable offers and services, the DZT has long been regarded as an example in the field of sustainable travel.

Green Globe:
Worldwide renowned sustainability seal in tourism

Green Globe is based in Los Angeles – with partners in Mexico, South America, South Africa, the Middle East, the Caribbean and Europe. The organisation certifies sustainable projects and businesses in the travel and tourism industry worldwide. In addition, Green Globe provides training and marketing support in 83 countries, based on internationally recognised criteria, developed in the past 15 years within the Green Globe programme. Certification involves a constant process, which is continually checked and verified. Including the DZT, the three national organisations active in tourism which carry the Green Globe Seal are the German Convention Bureau e.V. (GCB) and the European Association of Events (EVVC). Green Globe attends all leading international travel and tourism fairs and conferences, such as the WTM in London, the ITB in Berlin and the IMEX in Frankfurt.

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Visit Flanders win the Amadeus and WTM Travel Experience Award

World Travel Market, London – On November 6th, Visit Flanders was awarded the ‘Amadeus & WTM Travel Experience Award’ for its provision in Accessible Tourism. The judges praised the efforts that Flanders has made to become  an accessible holiday destination for everyone, particularly in respect of the improvements made in the Flanders Fields area, prior to its Great War Commemoration.

Speaking after the award, Peter De Wilde, General Administrator of Visit Flanders said  “Flanders aims to be a holiday destination for everybody. Over the past 12 years, the region of Flanders has made great strides in terms investing heavily in practical accessibility of buildings, but also by educating and offering reliable information.  In the 21st century, holidaymakers consider accessibility to be an essential component of quality. The Tourism sector in Flanders can’t miss the opportunity to distinguish itself in this field.”

The judges also expect the provision of accessibility to be a necessity for every destination supplier. “Accessible travel is a growth market for the travel industry”, stated the judges. Suppliers of the tourism industry need to cater to the needs of travellers with disabilities in a way that exceeds expectations.Visit-Flanders-Fields-sml

The award, was made possible by a joint collaboration between Visit Flanders and the province of West Flanders. It is expected the commemoration of the Great War centenary will bring thousands of domestic and foreign visitors to Flanders Fields.  Amongst this number, there will undoubtedly be many people with disabilities who will benefit from an improved accessibility infrastructure in this area.   With this in mind, a number of accessible buildings and attractions were compiled in a dedicated ‘Flanders Fields-Accessible for Everyone” brochure available in English and French.

“By not limiting accessibility to separate points of interest but also covering all aspects of the entire region, we are able to offer Flanders Fields as a fully accessible destination for everyone, “, says Peter De Wilde. “If this meant adapting the trenches, we did all that was possible to make the area accessible friendly.  The result of all of these efforts is now visible, even if there is of course, still room for improvement. ”

In addition and in keeping with its accessibility commitment, Tourism Flanders has developed a new stand at World Travel Market that meets the major accessibility criteria’s. “Furthermore, specialised organisers of accessible travel in Flanders have been actively invited to come to see the features of accessible Flanders Fields and to draw upon their experiences in our regions as an inspiration for other major tourist regions, such as the coast and the cities”, ” stated Peter de Wilde. ”A disability or impairment”, he concludes “shouldn’t create a bar to travel”


Germany wins ‘Best International Youth Destination’

Germany wins ‘Best International Youth Destination’ at the annual BETA Awards

German National Tourist Office recognised as the ‘destination that successfully promotes itself to attract a youth focused audience’ (BETA).

London, 06 December 2013 – the German National Tourist Office (GNTO) won the award for ‘Best International Youth logo-german-tourist-boardDestination’ at the annual BETA Awards last night. The GNTO is a previous winner of the ‘Best International Youth Destination’ award which is co-ordinated by the British Educational Travel Association (BETA); for the first time this year, nominees for the ‘Best International Youth Destination’ category were submitted by and voted for, members of the public.

Youth travel has been a major focus for Travel Destination Germany this year, with the launch of its global ‘Youth HotSpots in Germany – Share the Moment’ campaign and ‘Germany Rocks’, a multimedia

campaign focusing on German Music Festivals, such as Wacken and Hurricane.


Klaus Lohmann, Director of the GNTO for UK and Ireland commented:

“This is a very special award to us and we are thrilled! With travel, comes education. Modern Germany is only 24 years after the peaceful revolution and the Fall of the Wall in 1989, making it one of the youngest countries in Europe. Germany is open, forward-thinking and we welcome wholeheartedly the new ideas and inspiration that young people bring”.