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The vacation period is coming and everyone is probably looking for a proper vacation package to book for their next trip. The choice of operators, providers and destinations is huge, so let us dig a bit deeper into the search engines of the trip advisors, hotel and flight operators to identify the most suitable package. High ratings, service quality and price of the vacation packages are the main criteria to start with. It hast to be fast and easy to book. These are the typical vacation booking steps by the regular travellers among us. Only a few global trotters are considering the social, environmental and economic impacts and outcomes of their trips. The reason: booking habits are numerous and, frankly, not easy to change. This is exactly the point where organizations like Fair Trade Tourism for South Africa (FTTSA) come into play.

"The world buys more and more Fair Trade!" FTTSA is an existing organization, a nonprofit company registered in Pretoria, South Africa, as a market development organization for Fair Trade Tourism. Tourism that is managed according to Fair Trade principles in a manner that sustainably benefits people, businesses and the environment. FTTSA is the first and the only Fair Trade certification programme in South Africa which provides Fair Trade Tourism certification services to tourist businesses and operators. Casual travellers will find a number responsible travel packages and Fairtrade products supported by FTTSA following the principles of the fair trade tourism.

How do we make fair trade tourism as common as possible and how do we trigger a mind shift? The transformation has already started with help of FTTSA. This is achieved by certifying tourism products in African countries and making these accessible worldwide to fair-minded independent travellers, on the one hand, and to tour operators looking to increase their sustainability performance and provide packaged travel to sustainability-savvy consumers, on the other hand.

FTTSA is continuously joining forces with local certification partners within the Sustainable Tourism Certification Alliance Africa (STCAA) and jointly drives the fair trade tourism principles within and outside of South Africa. Together with my SAP Social Sabbatical colleagues Julie Scanlon-Young, Vatsala Kakroo, Frank Kochendoerfer, we are very passionate about contributing to this transformation. It is a great inspiration of being part of the FTTSA family during the next 4 Weeks and supporting the organization in developing and strengthening their global Fair Trade for tourism foot print.