Our Sustainability Policy
The world is changing, and we are with it. Recently, we have officially began to follow the policy of sustainable tourism development, which will be present not only in our online resources, but will also take a leading place in the life of the company, its employees, customers and partners.
Our policy for the development of sustainable tourism in fully supports our goal and principles - to preserve, show attention, consciously approach the problem, protect, and ultimately strive to improve life systems, where the foundation of the future can support the economy of the countries of Central Asia as a whole.
We strive to meet the needs of modern tourists and the local population, while preserving and increasing opportunities for the future. Sustainable tourism in Central Asia implies the possibility of creating long-term conditions for the development of both tourism itself and the conservation of rich natural resources along with divers social and cultural values of local societies. Our ultimate goal is to achieve a higher standard of living of local population through assistance to their economic growth and preservation of environmental benefits and natural capital for future generations.
DCAT is B2B inbound tour operator to Central Asia. Cultural values and the primeval beauty of nature are what we try to preserve and value in our daily work. Step by step, from supporting local communities and the cultural heritage of the Silk Road, to elimination of plastic during our tours, picnics, to gifts of felt bags for tourists used to store souvenirs. We aim at sustainability as an action that lives side by side with us. This is what makes us move on and deliberately implement our plans.
Our goal is to take constant measures that can minimize the human impact on the environment in mountainous areas, in small steps to protect all those who are actively involved in our work chain to create conscious tourism. We not only strive to do business, but also to support the country financially by creating jobs, promoting local communities and eco-hotels. This certainly inspires confidence in our clients and respect for our goal - to live in harmony with nature, respect the religion and traditions of different peoples, breathe fresh air, drink clean water and eat healthy food, walking, love wild animals and create all conditions for their safe arrival in mountainous terrain.
We think about our planet and the next generation. We strive to leave a healthy, happy and harmonious Earth for future generations. Each of our steps is aimed at preserving flora and fauna in their original form, implementing projects to support small businesses (eco-hotels, yurt camps, felt workshops, master classes on cooking national dishes). We regularly hold discussions with our employees on how to minimize the impact of destructive human attitudes on the country's ecology.
We work with various organizations that also aim to build resilience across the country. These daily actions can lead us to the solution of our goal - to improve the worldview of people and their relationship to nature. We are adhering to the Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations
Conscious governance and human rights.
Conscious management. With the absolute support of conscious management, our company has a coordinator who is responsible for the development of sustainable tourism in all its forms. All plans and efforts are constantly being developed and monitored in this direction.
Cooperation. We constantly maintain an open dialogue at tourism exhibitions, forums and takes part in training seminars in order to constantly keep abreast of the latest developments in the field of tourism, quickly respond to innovations and inform our partners and customers about all changes.
Fair play. Our employees work in a comfortable, supportive and secure environment. The company's policy is based on openness towards employees, they have a salary, official paid leave (for sickness, pregnancy, rest), bonus (monthly and annual) and a transparent contract. We pay taxes in full are require the same from our contractors including part-time guides and drivers. Guests arriving from overseas are cared for by guides, drivers and all our staff who are ready to provide assistance when needed.
Preventive Measures. Continuous monitoring allows us to track the risks of our product and our partners in order to best anticipate harmful effects on exposure to humans, the environment and animals. We collect garbage from yurt camps and mountainous areas where there is no possibility for correct disposal. Every year we check the readiness of hotels, cars and restaurants to receive guests. Checks take place without warning, which makes it possible to objectively assess the situation.
Children and youth. We strictly adhere to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and ILO Convention 138, upholding the minimum age for admission to employment. We implement preventative measures and procedures to ensure that children are protected from tourism related sexual exploitation and all potential forms of abuse; and ensure that employees under the age of 18 are only employed in accordance with national regulations and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, whichever provides most protection, and ensure that International Labor Organization conventions on minimum age and child labor are complied with (www.ilo.org/ipec).
Protection and human rights. Humanity is one of the core values of our company. Thanks to many international organizations, we participate in the collection of clothes, books and necessary things to support schools, orphanages and low-income families. Many foreign partners also take part in saving the lives of sick children. We are strongly committed to protecting children from sexual slavery in all countries where we live and work. The future of our children depends on the right decisions made today.
Equality. We are an international company and there is a place for any faith, skin color and gender. We provide a level playing field for everyone, without any discrimination. In our programs we try to involve different ethnic groups. Our standards apply to all of our service areas. To be tolerant towards every person is a principle in our work.
Diversity. We are absolutely convinced that while living and working in an international country, we need to show all its flavor of life. Our team is trained and able to work with different age groups and people of different nationalities, employees know and respect the life and culture of all ethnic groups living in Central Asia. We strive to build an honest and open dialogue, thereby setting an example for our guests from abroad.
Intolerance of corruption. No employee or contractor on behalf of DCAT may accept or give bribes. Corruption is a step into a deep abyss, we build relationships openly and honestly.
Fair competition. We compete with our signature products (we develop group and individual tours for each country of Central Asia), the quality of services and the price of the product, we strive to comply with all the principles of open competition, we refute dumping. We honestly comply with all tourism related laws and regulations.
Monitoring. We are strict about the quality of our services. Therefore, we conduct monitoring after each group, distributing a questionnaire to the clients, where they can leave their opinion. We review our plans and actions every season, that is, every six months. The processes of the services rendered are monitored daily, which allow us to respond in time to any changes. We have a 24/7 support line and we are accessible from anywhere in the world.
Destinations, environment and community connections
Deliberate action and responsible promotion of the product and service. Destinations in which a tourist product negatively affects the health of the tourist and has a destructive effect on flora and fauna, as well as infringes on human rights, are not proposed for promotion. We are against hunting, illegal fishing and always avoid visiting places where there is even a hint of such a risk while traveling.
Authenticity. We would like to continue working in the direction of authentic tourism and try to carefully promote this direction, while maintaining the edge of uniqueness. We avoid mass events, we work only with certain groups of people, respecting their way of life and traditions. Our main slogan in this matter is “Do no harm”.
Local communities. On the main routes, we always include visits to local communities for traditional dinners, to get acquainted with the life of ordinary people. That is, we try to support small communities that do not directly benefit from tourism. By engaging with such communities, it helps to reduce the negative impact on the main tourist destinations, thereby trying to bring more experience and uniqueness to the tourists' trip.
Empowerment. Every time we start looking for or think over a new destination, we try to discuss all the moments of interaction with local people and strive to clearly define our position, teach and assist in the formation of a well-functioning work, explain how to get income from tourist services, we try to take into account all cons and pros.
Efforts by leadership and teams. Following clear instructions and an action plan, our team strives and will strive to become a role model for others and will do everything possible to change the situation in the world for the better.
Disposal and energy consumption. We strive to take control of the entire comprehensive disposal system in our office. We reduce energy consumption, divide waste into categories, collect waste paper, try to do everything simply, clearly and easily - we introduce a habit, not a one-time responsible call of conscience. Smart Home system allows to control any leaks and if door/window was left open.
Sustainable procurement. We do not succumb to the trend of one-time consumption, our life principle is to repair and reuse office equipment. We try to clearly follow the needs of the office and buy only the most necessary at the moment. If possible and required, we make bulk purchases to minimize packaging.
Reducing plastic. We have long ago given up on plastic dishes. We adhere to this decision both in the office and during the organization of picnics for tourists. Long ago switched to using biodegradable trash bags.
Cleaning activities. We regularly participate in environmental clean-up activities and try to spread such an example on social networks and try to attract clients to collect wastes at mountain paths.
Pure water. Kyrgyzstan can rightfully be proud of its mountainous and clean water. We give tourists detailed instructions on where to buy water, where it comes from and what benefits the consumption of the purest water brings when traveling in the mountains.
Sustainable travel. The modern world has moved online, we are also following this trend, thereby reducing travel and airplane flights. We hold meetings and conferences in Zoom or solve everyday issues via Skype. For important trips, we try to use ecological methods of movement (bus, train, bicycle, etc.)
Suppliers and guides
Responsible suppliers. When booking accommodation and tour activities from local residents, we select those who support sustainable tourism principles and use eco-friendly materials in their daily life and consume organic food. These people have principles that we respect and make meaningful when traveling for our tourists.
Loyalty. We strive to ensure that our suppliers have a positive impact on tourism activities, both financially and emotionally.
Selection. We choose our partners carefully, as prefer to work on a long-term basis, openly and honestly. The management personally evaluates the entire list of partners, checking the strict compliance of our conditions.
Sustainable Development Statement. Our selection is based on the values of the company and its clear understanding of the sustainability of tourism in the modern world. We urge our suppliers to adhere to these principles, write our terms in the contract and negotiate again orally. Any violation of the rules may result in cancellation of the contract.
Training of guides. Our guides are trained at guide courses, where our company takes an active part and tests guides for their language skills. Each new program is rolled back with a guide and all our principles in work are meticulously explained. The guide, like no other, is a thin thread between the tourist and the locals, but also plays an important role in conveying correct and clear information about our working methods and care for the environment. A Code of Ethics has been developed for guides.
Excursions and activities
Deliberate excursions. We do not invite foreign partners and clients to participate in activities that harm humanity, fauna, flora, contribute to air and river pollution, or those that are socially unacceptable.
Product inventory. During our tours, we support local communities (workshops, shops, markets, etc.) by purchasing local goods for tourists and by the tourists themselves while traveling. A short trip to local sites helps the development of small and medium-sized businesses.
A soft adventure. We strive to make the whole of Central Asia sustainable, safe and accessible for all. Therefore, we are constantly developing and making unique routes in remote corners so that people can be closer to nature, thereby laying the idea or positioning the idea of preserving nature in its original form.
Wild animals and animals in captivity. We show tourists only reserves and places with animals that strictly comply with the rules for combating cruelty to animals.
Sustainable transport. When developing the program, various types of transport are considered and laid down, while we take into account cost, sustainability, price, comfort and safety. We analyze options and make decisions.
Minimizing ecological footprint. We understand well that any journey leaves an ecological footprint. At the moment, we strive to cooperate with various international organizations that plant trees and reduce carbon emissions into the atmosphere.
Donations. We acknowledge that donating is not an easy task, so we do our best to help and donate money only to trusted NGOs. We want to be sure that our help will go to good causes.
Prohibition of visiting schools and kindergartens. We do not conduct visits to schools or kindergartens because this could harm the local community.
Customer communication and protection.
Customer confidentiality. Absolutely all of our employees are responsible for maintaining confidential information about clients, in any form (paper, electronic and verbal). All employees are prohibited from disclosing information, and they are also responsible for information leaks.
Product information. Our customer marketing process is clear and straightforward. We provide complete product information including a sustainability statement. We provide a service strictly according to the contract and program.
Code of Conduct. We inform and even distribute memos to all travelers about the rules of conduct in the country, give clear recommendations and advice, reminding them several times during the tour and promote a positive contribution to the development of tourism in our region.
Service quality. All tourists always have our local 24/7 contacts in their hands, including contact information of local guides and key service providers. We respond to complaints, unforeseen circumstances from anywhere in the world and quickly respond to all force-majeure circumstances.
Crisis response. With the help of the efforts of the whole working staff, we have developed our own methods of crisis response, we are constantly in touch and are ready to support partners in any difficult situation and make every effort to get out of a difficult situation in a positive way. Guests arriving from abroad are taken care of by guides, drivers and all our staff, who are ready to assist with the first complaint.
Customer satisfaction. We have specific QC inspection procedures that now include resilience and safety during a pandemic. We continually measure and try to improve customer satisfaction and safety.
Rights and obligations.
This document reflects the current policy of the company in matters of sustainable tourism. We are implementing and disseminating this policy in our divisions under the leadership of the Sustainable Tourism Team, which will oversee the entire process. The document will be amended and changed every two years, which will take into account the company's progress in the policy of sustainable tourism and meet all the criteria of the realities of that time. First of all, the question concerns certification in Travelife, which will allow us to stay on track and move in the right direction.
Structure and responsibility.
The department head will be responsible for the content and any changes to this policy. He is also responsible for the implementation of all points prescribed in the document and the dissemination of information among our partners and employees. Well, compliance and implementation of the policy depends entirely on DCAT team. The entire process will be monitored and necessary decisions will be made so that the action plan will be implemented correctly and timely manner.