What: 4-week sustainable tourism online course by the GSTC
When: January 27 – February 21, 2020*
Where: Online
Language: English


Registration for this course is now closed. If you would like to be added to the wait list, please send an email to training@gstcouncil.org (Subject: “STTP 0120 Wait List”) with your contact details. If any space becomes available we will inform you.

Alternatively, please see these upcoming online course options this year: 2020Q2 (Apr 20 – May 15, 2020), 2020Q3 (June 29 – July 24, 2020), 2020Q4 (October 5 – 30, 2020).

*Weekly live webinars scheduled for 12:00-13:00 CET (Central European Time, UTC +1) (show on your time zone) on the following days:

  • Week 1: Monday, January 27th and Thursday, January 30th
  • Week 2: Monday, February 3rd and Thursday, February 6th
  • Week 3: Monday, February 10th and Thursday, February 13th
  • Week 4: Monday, February 17th and Thursday, February 20th

These live webinars will be recorded and participants will be able to watch the recordings any time during the course period. Although strongly encouraged, attending these sessions live is not mandatory.


Sustainable Tourism Online Course for Industry Professionals

The GSTC Sustainable Tourism Training Program (STTP) provides the knowledge and resources needed to help improve sustainability practices by tourism industry businesses and destinations. Built on the framework of the GSTC Criteria, the global baseline standards for sustainability in travel and tourism, the STTP training class will help you achieve tangible actions that fulfill the globally recognized standard of sustainability best practices.

Delivered as a 4-week-long facilitated and interactive training class, the sustainable tourism online course offers a convenient way to improve your sustainability skills in a flexible online learning environment, while at the same time learning alongside GSTC experts and fellow sustainable tourism practitioners.

What Do Other Industry Professionals Say about This Course?

“An excellent programme run by well qualified professional staff and trainers. The guest speakers were world class and materials industry leading. A definite must for any tourism professional who is serious about making sustainable impacts for the betterment of our industry.”

Graham Harper, Director of Sustainability and Social Responsibility, Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)

“Amazing learning experience. Exceeded my expectations by far. Excellently organized and facilitated. Great dynamics in discussions with course participants – so much to learn from. Highly valuable best practices and interactive modules really made the best learning experience I had until now! It really motivated and inspired me to continue on the road of global sustainable tourism.”

Michelle Schönberger, Deutsche Bahn

>> See more comments by past course participants


Certificate in Sustainable Tourism 2017 SAMPLE 300pxGSTC Certificate in Sustainable Tourism

By completing this 4-week online training class of the STTP, you will meet the training requirement towards earning the GSTC Certificate in Sustainable Tourism.

Once you complete the class, you will have have access to the official STTP Exam, and upon successful completion (75% and above passing mark is required), receive a Certificate in Sustainable Tourism by the GSTC to demonstrate your knowledge of sustainable tourism standards and practices.

>> Learn more about GSTC Certificate in Sustainable Tourism


GSTC Trainer: Steve Noakes

Steve Noakes has been involved in the travel and tourism industry for 40 years, and is a long term advocate for sustainable tourism practices across the Asia Pacific region. He is founder of Pacific Asia Tourism, an international project management company focused on tourism’s capacity to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals and the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism. He is also Director/part-owner of Ecolodges Indonesia & EcoSafari Indonesia, operating ecolodges and inbound tours with a wildlife and biodiversity conservation focus across Indonesia, a Director of Binna Burra Mountain Lodge in the world heritage listed Lamington National Park in Australia and a Director of the Lamington Natural History Association at Lamington National Park.

He has also been an active participant on the UNWTO Panel of Tourism Experts and the World Committee on Tourism Ethics, contributing to a number of UNWTO projects in Asia and East Africa. He is an Adjunct Research Fellow at the Griffith Institute for Tourism, Griffith University, Australia, and teaches the full semester Sustainable Tourism & Indigenous Cultures, subject at Bond University, Gold Coast, Australia.

Ayako Ezaki, GSTC Training Director

Ayako Ezaki is Co-Founder and Head of Knowledge Management & Communications at TrainingAid, an international tourism and training company offering online training courses and skills development opportunities for tourism industry professionals.

Having worked for over ten years in tourism professional training and education in the non-profit sector, Ayako specializes in content building, educational program design, and project planning. She also brings many years of experience in online communications, social media marketing, and web publishing. Through TrainingAid’s partnership with the GSTC, Ayako serves as Training Director to develop, manage and market the GSTC Sustainable Tourism Training Program (STTP).

Randy Durband, GSTC CEO

Randy Durband 200Randy Durband has had two careers in travel and tourism – twenty-plus years in senior leadership positions at some of the finest U.S. tour operators, having served as President for Travcoa, INTRAV, and Clipper Cruise Lines, (brands within TUI Travel plc), plus Executive Vice President of Tauck World Discovery. Following that, in his second travel and tourism career, Randy advanced the work of Sustainable Tourism as an advisor, consultant, and speaker.

He brings his knowledge of the business of travel, his global network of travel professionals, and a passion for sustainability to support the GSTC and the general sustainable tourism movement. He has held several board positions and committee memberships in travel and tourism organizations, and is a frequent speaker on sustainable tourism issues.

Guy Bigwood, Managing Director, Global Destination Sustainability (GSD) Index

For the last 15 years, Guy has been delivering award-winning consulting services focused on helping cities, governments, associations and the hospitality industry step up, scale up and speed up their sustainability programmes and operational practices. He is the Managing Director of the Global Destinations Sustainability Index; a multi-stakeholder partnership to accelerate the development and performance of sustainable destinations.

Guy was previously the President of the Green Meeting Industry Council, and was the Sustainability Director of MCI, the world’s largest association management, communications and events agency.

Sophia Hyder Hock, Founder and CEO, Papilia

Sophia Hyder Hock is the Founder and CEO of Papilia, a boutique cultural learning and development firm which thrives on empowering people to unleash a greater understanding of diverse perspectives, leadership, and communication styles. In this position she designs and facilitates diversity and inclusion, cross-cultural communication, talent management and mindful leadership training/coaching programs tailored to meet client workplace wellness initiatives and equity goals.

Sophia is an expert at training and coaching staff on organizational development practices tailored to optimize business performance. She integrates human-centered design thinking and culture mapping methods in her curriculum to help her audience reach their highest potential. As an international yoga instructor and yoga life coach, Sophia also incorporates wellness practices into her sessions as a holistic way to improve employee work/life balance and retention of staff. Sophia has designed and led innovative team wellness programs for resorts, cruises, and speciality travel companies around the world, and is constantly looking for creative ways to incorporate sustainable initiatives unique to every culture.

Jeremy Smith, Writer, Speaker and Sustainable Tourism Consultant

Jeremy Smith is a writer, speaker and sustainable tourism consultant studying the transformative potential of the travel industry and its potential for supporting destination and social resilience. He is the author of Transforming Travel – realising the potential of sustainable tourism and Clean Breaks – 500 New Ways to See the World; and he edits Travindy.com the travel industry sustainable tourism news site.

He writes a fortnightly blog on sustainable tourism for World Travel Market and WTTC’s monthly Tourism for Tomorrow newsletter. He has written briefing papers for organisations including the UK National Parks, Travel Foundation, PATA and the European Travel Foundation. He delivers regular keynote speeches for destinations and companies; is a member of Rotterdam’s International Advisory Board; and provides ongoing sustainable tourism consultancy to Tripadvisor.


Course Registration Fees

The early-bird registration fees (available through December 13th, 2019) for this class are:

  • US$ 445 per person (Regular)
  • US$ 395 per person (GSTC Member)

After December 13th, 2019:

  • US$ 495 per person (Regular)
  • US$ 445 per person (GSTC Member)

*For GSTC Organization members, the above member discount is available to all staff members and can be used for an unlimited number of times.

What’s Included

As part of your registration, you will receive training materials to be provided prior to the class; access to the online training platform; and a Certificate of Completion confirming your attendance in the class.

Please note: the STTP Exam fee (US$ 75 per person) is NOT included in the above course registration fee. If you would like to take the exam after the course, you can select the add-on option “Exam & Certificate” when you register, or you can also sign up for the exam afterwards.


Group Discounts

You can sign up multiple people at the same time when registering online. Select the number of people you would like register, and you can enter contact details for each participant on the form.

We also offer a discount for each group purchase of more than 5 seats.

  • 5-10 people: US$ 375 per person.
  • 11+ people: US$345 per person

If you would like to sign up as a group of 5 and more, please contact us (training@gstcouncil.org) for more details.

Need-Based Discounts

We offer a limited number of need-based discounts to current students and professionals who demonstrate genuine needs. To apply, please submit this application form.

*Can’t make it to this class? STTP online training classes are offered quarterly, in addition to the onsite face-to-face training classes offered throughout the year in various locations around the world. See all upcoming STTP training classes here.