Skip to main content
Visit Scotland | Alba

Help shape the future of business support on Giving feedback through our short survey only takes a few minutes.

Article published 20/03/2024

Innovative new partnership

We’ve launched an innovative new partnership that will focus on the challenge of how to reduce carbon emissions in the tourism supply chain.

This partnership with global tour operator and leader in sustainable travel, The Travel Corporation (TTC), and international sustainable tourism organisation, the Travel Foundation, aims to inspire and support climate action within Scotland’s tourism industry. It represents a huge opportunity to influence and drive change with businesses, visitors and destinations.

This is the first time that VisitScotland and any global tour operator have committed to work together to share learnings, insights and support each other in accelerating change and being part of the climate change solution.

Read more on the project


The overall goal of the project in the long term is to accelerate the de-carbonisation of the tourism supply chain in Scotland and its anticipated learnings from the project will be of international relevance.

The focus will be on developing and delivering responsible tourism experiences and itineraries which aim to have a positive social or environmental impact on communities and those who experience them. 

The partnership will look at every touchpoint in the supply chain that a visitor experiences. For consumers looking for positive impact experiences in Scotland, the project aims to make selecting a travel provider that prioritises sustainability easier, giving them the opportunity to discover local stories, enjoy authentic experiences and see how their visit contributes to local communities.

Supporting our industry on its climate journey

Scotland’s tourism industry recognises the need for change with 75% of businesses aware of the Scottish Government’s net zero target for 2045. For its part, The Travel Corporation is the first global tour operator to achieve validated near term, long term and net zero targets.

Together, we will support businesses seeking to take steps to reduce their carbon emissions and offer sustainable options. This project will encourage tourism businesses in Scotland to see the business case for responsible, low-carbon development, and it will enable consumers to choose responsible products and tours.

Businesses from around Scotland took part in a webinar this week to find out more about the partnership and opportunities presented by the growing market of environmentally conscious consumers. They also heard from Scottish businesses who shared their experience of the benefits and opportunities of investing in a responsible future.

Supporting Scotland’s transition to a low carbon economy is a key part of our work to support the national tourism strategy Scotland Outlook 2030 Responsible Tourism for a Sustainable Future, and this new partnership is a significant part of planned activity for the year.




Visitors at Scone Palace

This important new partnership marks an exciting milestone in our ambitions to becoming a leading destination for responsible tourism. It will allow us to share learnings and insights with the aim of accelerating Scottish tourism’s journey to net zero.

Visitors come to Scotland to enjoy our stunning natural and cultural heritage, and we need to protect these assets for the future. Despite the challenges facing our tourism industry, many businesses recognise the importance of taking action, and the benefits – both ethically and economically – that can come with doing that.

We know that transitioning to a low carbon economy is a challenge, and not something that we can do alone.

Malcolm Roughead OBE, Chief Executive, VisitScotland

We’re thrilled to partner with VisitScotland on this, a collaboration that takes a long-term approach, and places equal emphasis on both community benefit and the path to net zero.

The latter challenge requires both sides – the destination and the tour provider – to address the elements that are within their purview, in order to see genuine advancement.

Shannon Guihan, Chief Sustainability Officer, The Travel Cooperation

This partnership and its supply-side focus is a demonstration of what we need to move the needle on climate action in tourism. It’s not only a golden opportunity for Scottish businesses to access vital support, resources, and expertise, but also a deeper exploration into the broader challenges which can hinder the scaling and acceleration of low-carbon operations, with a view to unlocking solutions.

These invaluable lessons won’t stay confined to Scotland – they’ll resonate globally through our wider programmes, placing Scotland and TTC at the forefront of shaping the future of tourism in a decarbonised world.

Rebecca Armstrong, Sustainable Tourism Specialist at the Travel Foundation

Background information

The Travel Corporation

The Travel Corporation (TTC) is an international group of 40 award-winning brands, which celebrated its first 100th Anniversary in 2020.

It’s portfolio of brands spans across 70 countries and offers an extensive selection of international travel and tourism companies, encompassing a variety of guided travel experiences, independent holiday packages, boutique river cruising, luxury hotels and safaris.

TTC is committed to positive impact through its sustainability strategy and non-profit foundation, TreadRight. With a goal of reaching net zero by 2050, validated science-based targets, and as a signatory of the Glasgow Declaration, TTC’s sustainability efforts have been recognised by AFAR and Fast Company Magazine, while their MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experiences have been endorsed by WTTC, Travel Foundation and representatives from the University of Harvard.  

For more information, please visit For the latest sustainability news and annual Impact Report, please visit TTC‘s Impact Hub.

About the Travel Foundation

The Travel Foundation is a leading global NGO (Non-governmental organisation) that works in partnership with governments, businesses, and communities to develop and manage tourism in a way that maximises the benefits for communities and the environment.

Founded in 2003, it has since worked in over 30 countries around the world.

The Travel Foundation was part of the Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism drafting committee and is now an implementation partner, encouraging organisations to sign up, and providing support for climate planning and action.

For more information, visit

Related links