Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (RCL) established a partnership with Sustainable Travel International in 2008 to further its Environmental Stewardship efforts, with a focus on corporate responsibility, supply chain management, and customer communications. Sustainable Travel International has offered RCL valuable guidance to reach its aggressive sustainability goals through the provision of expertise and resources, while helping to develop sustainability programs that generate return on investment through a healthy and positive guest experience. Our teams have also collaborated on an innovative destination stewardship strategy designed to support sustainable destination management in specific ports of call.
In collaboration with Conservation International, the Cruise Line International Association (CLIA), and RCL, Sustainable Travel International also developed a globally recognized certification program for shore excursion operators, now known as the STEP: Sustainable Shore Excursions Program. Sustainable Travel International developed and pilot tested the program in four ports of call throughout the Caribbean. The program now boasts dozens of participants worldwide. RCL has made a public commitment that 50% of all the shore excursions offered on its ships will be operated by tour operators which have been third-party verified to a recognized international sustainability standard by 2015. In 2012, Royal Caribbean’s private destination CocoCay was awarded Gold-level STEP certification by an independent third-party auditor.
In November 2009, RCL hosted a Destination Stewardship think-tank on-board Oasis of the Seas, which was convened by Sustainable Travel International, and attended by more than 20 private and public sector leaders from the travel and tourism industry. This led to the establishment of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council’s Destination Stewardship Working Group, which was tasked with facilitating the development of global baseline sustainable tourism criteria and indicators for destinations.
In November of 2010, RCL hosted the founding meeting of the Sustainable Travel Leadership Network (STLN) on-board Allure of the Seas. Since that time, RCL has been a contributing partner of the STLN, a unique collaboration centered on the development of global sustainability solutions.
In late 2012, Sustainable Travel International enrolled 75 of RCL’s Environmental Officers in its online Sustainable Tourism Professionals course.
We are proud to support RCL’s industry-leading efforts to balance fiscal and operational success, while also serving as stewards of the environment and the communities it serves. Read more about RCL’s environmental initiatives.