European Sustainable Tourism Labels: A tool to inform and educate consumers?
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Reino, S. (2011) European Sustainable Tourism Labels: A tool to inform and educate consumers?, , , no. 27, , Edinburgh
Consumers' engagement with sustainable tourism practices and labels is lacking. However, there is limited understanding of the reasons behind this. In order to explore the topic, this study examined the views expressed by sustainable tourism labelling organisations about consumers'engagement. This includes obtaining an insight into the level of awareness and understanding that sustainable tourism label certifiers have about consumers; exploring the level of consumer education currently undertaken by sustainable tourism label certifiers; and examining the perceived benefit and limitations that these certifiers have on engaging consumers in the development of their labels. The results suggested that consumers are considered the key initiator of sustainable tourism practices. However, the level of communication of these organisations with consumers is limited. Recommendations to improve communication and to integrate consumers in the sustainable tourism development cycle are presented.