Sustainable Tourism Training Program

Sustainable Tourism Course

Sustainable Business Travel Course

Sustainable Hotel Course

Custom Training

Auditor Training

GSTC Sustainable Tourism Training Program (STTP) Experience

Get an insider look at what it’s like to be part of our Sustainable Tourism training class.

GSTC Sustainable Tourism Course

✓ Gain in-depth knowledge of the GSTC Criteria, the baseline standard for sustainability in travel and tourism.
✓ Make informed decisions on how to implement sustainability practices for your company or destination.
✓ Get ready for developing viable and actionable sustainable tourism policies and practices for your organization.

The GSTC STTP offers two options for you to complete the training requirement towards earning the GSTC Professional Certificate in Sustainable Tourism: 3-day in-person training classes and facilitated online courses. 

In-person training classes combine trainer presentations, group discussions and exercises with hands-on learning opportunities (guest presentations, live Q&A, field session), focused on practical insights into the GSTC Criteria, and tangible action steps to applying the Criteria. With our partners and trainers, we offer these training classes in various locations around the world. See a sample (3-day) training agenda.

Our online courses offer a convenient and cost-effective way to follow the official GSTC Sustainable Tourism course curriculum from anywhere in the world. Delivered as facilitated 4-week courses, they combine self-paced learning, hands-on activities, and interactive components to enhance learning results. The GSTC online courses are co-developed and hosted by TrainingAid, the STTP Program Partner. Learn more about the 4-week course format (page by TrainingAid).

Training participants who complete either of the above options can take the official GSTC STTP Exam, which is offered in an online and open-book format. Those who pass the exam are awarded with the Professional Certificate in Sustainable Tourism by the GSTC to demonstrate their knowledge of sustainable tourism standards and practices. Learn more about the GSTC Professional Certificate in Sustainable Tourism

GSTC Sustainable Tourism Training Schedule

Dates Course ID
Location / Format
Trainer(s) Language Price Register
May 7-8 + May 28-29, 2021 (Partner Course)* Online Urs Wagenseil, Sabine Müller German CHF 375 button sign up

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May 13 – June 11, 2021 STTP-2105 Online Angela Nagy, Ayako Ezaki English Starting at USD 395 SOLD OUT

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July 08 – Aug 06, 2021 STTP-2107 Online Antje Martins, Ayako Ezaki English Starting at USD 395 button sign up

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Sept 1-4, 2021 (Partner Course)* Online Urs Wagenseil, Sabine Müller German CHF 375 button sign up

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Sept 22 – Oct 22, 2021 STTP-2109-S Online Jorge Moller, Leonardo Latorre Melín Spanish Starting at USD 395 button sign up

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October 14 – November 12, 2021 STTP-2110 Online Antje Martins, Ayako Ezaki English Starting at USD 395 button sign up

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*These courses cover the GSTC-Industry Criteria only, and are intended for tourism businesses.

Trainer and Partner Network

Get to know our training team, sustainable tourism experts and practitioners from around the world who are part of the STTP.

GSTC Sustainable Business Travel Course

✓ Take a new look at sustainability best practices in Business Travel – post-pandemic
✓ Focus on corporate and business travel management and helping companies recover successfully and in a balanced way.
✓ Make informed decisions on how to implement sustainability practices in business travel

The GSTC Sustainable Business Travel Course is conducted online, delivered as a facilitated 4-week course, it combines self-paced learning, hands-on activities, and interactive components to enhance learning results. It focuses on corporate and business travel, providing the knowledge and tools needed to help improve sustainability practices.

The course uses the four pillars of sustainable management to look at how to create a new model for business travel that harnesses the real value of a sustainable business travel program that respects the new needs of travel.

Training participants who the 4-week online GSTC Sustainable Business Travel training class have the opportunity to take the official GSTC Sustainable Business Travel Course Exam, which is offered in an online and open-book format. Upon successful completion, you (as an individual) are awarded with the Professional Certificate in Sustainable Business Travel by the GSTC to demonstrate your knowledge of sustainable business travel knowledge and practices. Learn more about the GSTC Professional Certificate in Sustainable Business Travel.

GSTC Sustainable Business Travel Training Schedule

Dates Course ID
Location / Format
Trainer(s) Language Price Register
May 6 – June 4, 2021 SBT-2105 Online Bernard Harrop, Horst Bayer English Starting at USD 395 button sign up

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September 9 – October 7, 2021 SBT-2109 Online Bernard Harrop, Horst Bayer English Starting at USD 395

GSTC Sustainable Hotel Course

✓ Designed for hospitality and accommodation professionals, and provides practical insights into sustainability practices for hotels
✓ Focus on the GSTC Criteria with performance indicators for hotels and accommodations
✓ Features expert presentations, useful resources, and real-life industry examples and lessons

The GSTC Sustainable Hotels course is designed for hospitality and accommodation professionals, and provides practical insights into sustainability practices for hotels. Delivered as a 2-week-long facilitated and interactive online course, the GSTC Sustainable Hotels course features expert presentations, useful resources, and real-life industry examples and lessons on applying sustainability best practices.

This course does not offer a Professional Certificate as the other courses.


GSTC Sustainable Hotel Training Schedule

Dates Course ID
Location / Format
Trainer(s) Language Price Register
May 27 – June 11, 2021 SHC-2105 Online David Ermen English Starting at USD 280 button sign up

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September 9 – September 23, 2021 SHC-2109 Online Angela Nagy English Starting at USD 280

Stay Informed

Unable to join a course soon? You can sign up for the GSTC Training Newsletter to be informed of new course schedules and important updates.

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What do other tourism industry professionals say about our training program?

The GSTC course has helped me to consolidate the basis of sustainability opening my mind by teaching me different ways to approach tourism industry and destination from a sustainable point of view. It’s very rich to share ideas with people from all over the world. An excellent organization, I highly recommend it to anyone with curiosity about how to improve in the sustainable tourism industry and with a personal motivation.

Gemma Llobet, Sustainable Tourism Programme, Barcelona Tourism Board

I’ve participated in the course to get a comprehensive overview of destination sustainability criteria. Much more than this, the course gave me the up-to-date analysis of current trends, and a huge number of relevant cases from the destinations, the industry networks and the service providers. I strongly recommend to attend the course.

Urska Dolinar, Manager Amazon of Europe Bike Trail; Director, Iskriva, Institute for Development of Local Potentials, Slovenia

The overall learning experience was great! The internet platform, videos and resources are are very well explanatory and the weekly live sessions perfectly illustrate all criteria.

Benoit Sauvage, CEO, Connect DMC

The GSTC training proved to be extremely helpful for me and my small-scale travel agency that I founded only 18 months ago. We definitely still have a long way to go on the road to sustainability but the GSTC training has been a very important step towards it. The training offers very detailed and concrete insights as well as general strategies to work towards a sustainable organisation.

Treesje Vanderlinden, Keniaanse Toeren

The topics covered were relevant and up-to-date. Sustainable tourism was not new to me, but I learned so much. I really loved how you managed to build and maintain a community, especially in the breakout sessions.

Håvard Utheim, Travelopment

My course facilitator and teacher (Ayako and Antje) went above and beyond to answer our questions and provide us with additional resources. The course content (the GSTC Criteria) was delivered in an understandable and organized way. Learning the GSTC Criteria and how it applies to our own projects, businesses, and destinations is integral to anyone wanting to do any kind of work in the future centered around travel. I appreciated that the course was delivered in an interactive way over Zoom, and not just something we watched on YouTube. For me, being able to interact with fellow students from around the world, was a big plus. Was well worth it, and I highly recommend the course!

Deb Lace-Kelly, The Lost Compass

This course has been very relevant and provides in-depth knowledge of GSTC criteria for sustainable practices for destinations as well as the travel industry [with] plenty of real life examples and share links to plenty of reading material throughout the course. … As we move forward during these difficult COVID times, learning our lessons on the damage to nature, it becomes all the more important for industry professionals to get trained and step up efforts to embrace sustainability in all aspects of tourism. Hence, I recommend this course to all industry professionals.

Manisha Soti, The Walshe Group

This course enables participants to connect with the GSTC team directly, over an easy to use platform and network around the world. Using real life examples and detail in each of the 4 sections of the GSTC.

Kim Storey, General Manager, Destination Phillip Island

The GSTC training was a great way to connect, network, and engage in mind-broadening and eye-opening discussions with others in the diverse field of sustainable tourism. I would highly recommend this as a starting point for anyone interested in the journey of regenerative and sustainable tourism.

Sarah Dawn Bergs, Founder, Nourish NPO & Shik Shack Backpackers

The course was great and the on- the-go discussions added great value to keep abreast of trends from across the globe. Participants from various parts of the world brought in their experiences and made the course very interesting.

Freeda M, Founder, Dharthi

Hearing about actual destinations applying Sustainable Tourism initiatives and learning from real situations practicing Sustainable Tourism, as well as the related successes and challenges, was very informative and valuable. My favorite part was the unexpected camaraderie from and connections with the other participants. I genuinely enjoyed the online discussion, sharing of ideas, and breakout groups and, overall, meeting so many others who she a passion for Sustainable Tourism. Thank you, GSTC, for a great course!

A complete holistic approach to sustainable tourism. The comprehensive lessons given each week break down the GSTC Criteria and are paired with practical examples, international experts and ‘hands on’ online workshops. The opportunity to discuss and share insights from all the participants around the world not only contributes to my own knowledge but to also my professional network. I highly recommend this course for anyone discovering sustainable tourism.

Isabelle Robertson, Tourism Development Consultant

The course is quick and handy way to immerse in the issues of Sustainability in Tourism and a great kick start in starting your own business or destination program. I could have had the course even longer and especially the live sessions were great to get to know some of the other participants and share their knowledge and experiences – best practices are the best way to get started and to get valuable information. Highly recommended!

Riikka Sukula, CEO, Scarpa Winery and Monvigliero Vineyard Villas

I highly recommend the course to anyone interested to explore or deepen sustainability in tourism. It gives a great overview on all dimensions and how to tackle them hands-on. Course management and content are both at the highest level! Thanks!

Samuel Wille, Manager Strategic Partnership, Switzerland Tourism Organization

The course was so informative and presented in an engaging & interesting way. The examples & speakers gave us a lot to think about and many tangible ways that we can make a difference in our travel business. Thank you!

This course has given me an approach to the GSTC Criteria, where the basic and complete structure to move forward on sustainable paths is visualized. The reflections generated through real examples, discussions and available material are key to better internalize what sustainability means. Ideas applicable to our business and our work area appear during the course that contribute positively to one’s reality. I will recommend this course, for its contribution to the objective, honest and constructive understanding of what sustainability is.

Agustin Landeta, Owner, Zenit Travel

I can only highly recommend the course for every travel and tourism professional- it is a great motivational boost to get into action and helps me support destinations in bringing the idea of destination stewardship – an inclusive and holistic approach – alive. We do not need more and more tourists, we need sustainable tourism.

Sonja Tischer, Travel Professional/ Consultant/ Experience Designer; Agency

Taking the GSTC training at this point in time was extremely valuable. It gave me a sustainable tourism framework to help assess what I’ve been able to accomplish and also consider the role that sustainable experiential travel may mean as we begin to inch our way out of the world of zero tourism towards something likely new and different. One other great benefit of the training was starting to get acquainted and sharing with other participants and instructors from around the globe. These connections will be valuable for a very long time to come.

I found this online course well structured and enjoyable. The trainers are really inspiring, extremely knowledgeable about the field and very supportive. The live online sessions give a great introduction to key topics, and there are online lessons, discussion forums and reference material to deepen knowledge. I feel like I have access to so much wisdom, and it is great to be part of a global community of sustainable tourism practitioners.

Thank you GSTC for such a great course. The content was relevant, the case studies were inspiring and the course structure was spot on! I can’t wait to take my learnings and inspiration and activate it across regional destinations in Australia. Keep up the great work.

What I liked the most about this course is the well-defined structure, the opinion sharing with online classmates, and the up-to-date topics. It makes the experience much more effective and enjoyable.

Naiara López, Tourism Consultant, THR

Excellent course that sets the foundations for sustainable tourism practice.I was very new with sustainable tourism and now after the course I have very solid understanding and skills to apply to my job. In addition, the amazing network of professionals sharing ideas is another great tool!

Monica Moruzzi, Helloworld Travel

GSTC Online Course is a great opportunity and investment that helped me understand the internationally recognized sustainable tourism standards (for destinations); as well as the importance of effectively contextualizing them to facilitate the long-term adoption, collaborative implementation and strategic monitoring of the destination criteria. I strongly recommend the GSTC training experience to other island destinations’ stakeholders because it can facilitate a much needed collective understanding of the importance of destination management, as well as stakeholder and host community engagement. I also recommend the course because of its user-friendly course platform, and its excellent trainers who were actively engaging with and giving feedback to participants; and at the same time, promoting interaction among them.

Alfredo Montañez Acuña, Biologist / Environmental Planning Student, Graduate Planning School, University of Puerto Rico

This course provided me with a thorough understanding of how to implement sustainable travel practices. I will definitely integrate information from this training into my work with travel organizations and destinations to help them achieve short-term progress through a long-term strategy.

Sophia Hyder Hock, Founder and CEO, Papilia

The GSTC training provides a comprehensive overview of key indicators for a holistic view of sustainable tourism. The training provided an excellent opportunity to network with other tourism professionals, and to share ideas, develop plans, and comment on sustainable tourism initiatives that are being implemented in a diverse array of locations globally. I’m grateful for the connections that I made and for the helpful feedback on ideas for improving sustainability in several operations.

Becca Balis, Consultant

Useful and inspiring! The way the course is organised with lots of practical experience from colleagues in the tourism sector is indeed the most useful and interesting part of the course, [making it easier] to approach the GSTC criteria.

The GSTC course was really great to me because it gave me an in-depth knowledge about sustainable tourism. The combination of the criteria explanation and the presentation from other experts was really great, as it gave us the know-how, lots of samples and case studies. Before joining this course, I had heard about the term sustainable tourism many times, but [was not sure] what it is all about and how we can achieve it. I am glad to have gained the bigger picture of sustainable tourism. I’m developing my village to be a community based tourism destination, and now I can adopt and apply the standard locally.

I Gede Oka Wira, Chief, Desa Wisata Jasri / Jasri Village Community Based Tourism

A great training program that gives the participants a thorough understanding on the sustainable management of both destinations and individual businesses. Anyone from the industry – from the business or the government side – should understand the bigger picture of the destination level management as well as the industrial level so that both public and private sectors can work together for a more sustainable tourism industry.

Aye Mya Mya Soe, General Manager, Indonesia, PEAK DMC

The GSTC Sustainable Tourism Training Program provided an up-to-date perspective and holistic approach on the topic. I really enjoyed taking part in the group discussions and hearing about the realities of other destinations and their challenges.

Jason Bent, Tourism Cluster Manager, Iles de la Madeleine Tourism Association

I think the training was very useful and gave me many insights that I will use in my daily work to develop more sustainable tourism. The training class was also a good group for networking.

Annika Sandström, Region Västerbotten, Sweden

The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) is the most widely recognized institution for offering sustainability courses for tourism professionals.

This is a one-of-a-kind course that provides the tools in getting you started. Not to mention, you’re also collaborating with people and organizations across the globe facing similar challenges. The feedback from fellow students was invaluable and honestly, what better way to tackle some big challenges related to the environment than with people from different countries and backgrounds. I’d take this course again just for those connections!

Julie North, Travel Ninja, Compass & Globe Travel

The [GSTC course] has been a remarkable learning experience and a great introduction to sustainable tourism. The combination of online resources, discussion forums, weekly live events with guest presenters provides a deeper understanding and useful tools in sustainable tourism. The trainers have incredible expertise in both tourism and sustainability and share their knowledge and passion about current sustainability practices. I would highly recommend this course to everyone involved in the tourism industry or have a interest in sustainable tourism.

Tarryn Smith, Africa Rewind

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.

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