The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) Criteria and Suggested Indicators for Tour Operators were created in an effort to come to a common understanding of sustainable tourism, and are the minimum that a Tour Operator (a provider, operator, and/or seller of travel products) business should aspire to reach.
The Tour Operator Criteria are organized around four main themes: effective sustainability planning, maximizing social and economic benefits for the local community, enhancing cultural heritage, and reducing negative impacts to the environment.
The Criteria for Tour Operators are the same as for Hotels, and both are identical to the GSTC Industry Criteria, but the Performance Indicators vary between Tour Operators and Hotels. NOTE: Prior to December 2016, GSTC offered the combined Hotel & Tour Operator Criteria, but have now separated them for two reasons: 1) to create distinct Performance Indicators for each; and, 2) to create a framework for future additional subsector Criteria (examples may include Attractions, Cruise, MICE, Transport, etc.)
Download Tour Operator Criteria and Performance Indicators
Download in other languages here
Download the Revision Report that highlights the main changes made from the H&TOv2 Criteria to the Industry Criteria.
Note on the usage of the GSTC Criteria:
- The GSTC encourages broad use and application of the GSTC Criteria, which are available from this website free of charge for their non-commercial use.
- However, the GSTC reserves the right to assess and charge fees for the commercial use of the GSTC Criteria.