The Duke of Sussex has suggested the pandemic offers the travel industry the chance to “jump-start a wholescale realignment” towards a sustainable future.
Writing the foreword to a report by his Travalyst organisation, Harry said as the industry emerged from the health crisis that there was a need to “reset and reimagine”.
The non-profit organisation Travalyst was co-founded by the duke and leading brands Booking.com, Skyscanner, Tripadvisor, Trip.com and Visa to encourage the tourism industry to become more sustainable and make eco-choices simpler for travellers.
Writing in Travalyst’s report “The Re-emergence of Travel” which examines the challenges and opportunities for the tourism industry this year, Harry said: “Even in pre-pandemic times, it was clear that the industry had not yet tackled some of its key sustainability challenges: climate change, pollution, and biodiversity loss.
“As the industry re-emerges from crisis, there is an urgent need to reset and reimagine. And as the bricks of rebuilding are laid, Travalyst will take a deliberate and dynamic approach.”
The travel and tourism sector has been one of the hardest hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, with communities and peoples’ livelihoods heavily impacted around the world.
Harry added: “Taking a more sustainable approach to travel can no longer be a debate from the sidelines of the industry. We have an opening to jump-start a wholescale realignment – which could and should involve everyone.”
One of the report’s key findings said: “This is the right time to act. The pandemic has acted as a catalyst for travellers to reconsider their own impact and demand more from businesses and governments to drive sustainable development.”