Tips for your travels
Sustainable tourism is at the heart of our business. We are acutely aware of the impact tourism has on local environments and are educated on the positive actions we can all take to support local people and cultures.
- We ensure our services and products are environmentally friendly
- We hold cultures and communities in the highest regard and ensure we respect everyone
- We use the services of local communities wherever we can to support small businesses and villages
- We pick our service providers based on their environmental awareness
- We educate our teams on their role in supporting sustainable tourism in Vietnam
- We promote our policies to our customers, and support their participation
- We actively support community development and local organizations
Our hub – a green environment
Our day to day activities are Green!
Since 2008 we have been actively promoting an environmentally friendly office environment. The whole team is on board!
Our key green initiatives:
1. Power saving
– We use low energy fans instead of powerful air conditioners where possible
– If we have to use the air conditioners, we ensure the temperature is no lower than 26 degrees Celsius
– Our laptops and screens are energy saving
– Everyone knows to turn their computer off if they will not be using it for more than 30 minutes
– Energy saving light bulbs have been implemented throughout
– We all try to take the stairs instead of the lift
– We all try to take public transport to the office
– We support local businesses in our sourcing, and reduce our use of non recyclable material
– Signage is positioned at power points to warn users of overuse
2. Water saving
– Water leaks are managed and minimized
– Signage is positioned at water points to warn users of overuse
3. Paper saving
– PDF is our preferred method of viewing documents; we try to minimize printing where possible
– Printing on both sides of the paper is standard
– Use small pages or double print on one page where possible
– Signage is positioned near printers to warn users of overuse
To promote the above polices in the office in a fun way we have a piggy bank for fining offenders!
Ume’s goals are all about protecting the environment and sustaining local communities in Vietnam through tourism. Our local knowledge can have a real impact on local NGOs and those further afield, and we are dedicated to having a positive effect on both the local and national economy and our rural environments. We want to be leaders in this field!
A. Our initiatives
1. Community Based Tourism in Chieng Yen commune (Son La prov)
In partnership with RTC and with advice from the Dutch Development Organization we support three local communities in the villages of Na Bai and Pu Mau, and actively incorporate their services on our tours
2. Community Based Ecotourism in Ngoc Son – Ngo Luong Nature Reserve (Hoa Binh)
With funding from the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development and the Foundation for Social Promotion of Spanish Culture, we support and train local residents of the area in tourism initiatives. Once trained we incorporate their skill sets in our tours to Hoah Binh.
B. We Give Back
Ume is aware that even small initiatives can make a big difference. We are keen supporters of volunteering projects and have seen some very positive changes to the local environment. Some of our best successes include the below, and their positive impacts are still being felt to this day.
- Cat Ba Langur Conservation Project, Hai Phong
- Ta Phin Cultural Tourism Village, Sapa – Lao Cai
- Cuc Phuong Primate Rescue Center, Ninh Binh
- Koto Training Center for Disadvantaged Youth, Hanoi
- Nguyen Dinh Chieu School for the Blind Fund, Hanoi
ReCycle annual event
Since our inception we have been at the forefront of sustainable tourism. Our commitment to responsible tourism ensures we are continuing to improve our process and impacts on the environment.
Our yearly ReCycle event is one of our showcases of our green policy. Here, we bring our contacts together – service providers, admin teams and tour guides – and join together in a celebration of responsible tourism. We cycle, recycle and develop ideas on sustainable and responsible tourism for Ume.
Our 3rd annual ReCycle is a one night trip to Ninh Binh! Those taking part can enjoy the leisurely journey through the gorgeous scenery of Ninh Binh, get involved in out tree planting initiative in Cuc Phuong National Park and enjoy some fun activities. This year’s ReCycle aims to promote green travel with tree planting to offset carbon dioxide and global warming. It’s also a great opportunity for us to maintain and develop our network of stakeholders and service providers from across the tourist industry
What is Recycling?
Recycling one of the 5Rs: Reuse, Recycle, Reduce, Renew and Respect. At Ume we are conscious of implementing the 5Rs on a daily basis and incorporating them on our tours and services.
Why ReCycle at Ume?
Cycling is an activity that is seen frequently on our itineraries and tours, and becoming ever more popular amongst our guests. We are keenly aware of the positive impact of cycling and so decided in 2011 to incorporate this green activity into an event for all our contacts to enjoy.
For a Green Halong
Doing our bit!
In a joint venture with the Halong Bay Management Board, Indochina Junk (a sister company of Ume) launched the “For a Green Halong Bay” initiative. This pilot project is managed by Indochina Junk and sponsored by Ume and Tropical Sails.
The initiative sponsors the Vung Vieng fishing village, a traditional fishing village that features on some of our tours. The project aims to promote waste and litter control amongst local families and to encourage the maintenance of the beautiful Halong Bay area.
Since the beginning of the campaign, when 50 plastic rubbish bins were given to local families, the area has greatly improved. Our campaign For A Green Halong has the following aims:
1. Education of local residents in recycling and the environment
2. Collection and treatment of waste from the Halong Bay area
3. Replacing the Styrofoam floats from the floating houses with plastic alternatives in order to provide a more durable solution.
4. Providing life jackets for local fishermen
5. Re-planting of the mangrove forests in Halong Bay
6. Building new floating schools for the children
In the four years since the projects inception, ‘For a Green Halong Bay’ has had massive success.
– 80% of local village rubbish in Cong Dam and Vung Vieng has been collected and treated.
– 128 life jackets have been distributed
– 2 hectares of mangrove forest has been planted
– A new floating school in Vung Vieng has been completed
If you are visiting Halong Bay we count on you for your support!