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SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

This document contains important information: Mission, Vision, Code of Ethics and Policies Colon Uniglobe Travel has established in order to inform their employees, suppliers, customers and the general public about its commitment to the environment and the community. For information on our sustainable management may contact Mrs. Kathia Valverde or Mr. Yerick Chaverri leaders of the sustainability process internally and members of the Sustainability Committee.

Introduction Since the founding of Colon Travel Agency in 1976, we have characterized as an innovative and visionary company. Today, we stand proudly at the forefront of our organization being converted into a corporation that seeks to maintain its reputation with excellent quality of service and creating products that meet efficiently the needs of our customers. Our work over all these years have helped us to acquire the experience that today leads us to develop a high efficiency operation, which is why we also joined the efforts to conserve the environment and supporting the communities, seeking to mitigate negative impacts that can generate our operation. Therefore, and in order to ensure our commitment as a responsible company, we have decided to acquire the Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST), joining the group of tourism businesses that today distinguish the tourism sector in Costa Rica under one effort responsibility and ethics, protecting natural resources, our communities (our character, our traditions, our culture), conveying to visitors the importance of working in this direction and training our employees so they can perform their duties in a manner consistent what we are enacting.

Our Mission Provide a tourism operation in Costa Rica that fully meets the needs of our customers and fulfill our commitment as a sustainable company, protecting the environment and our culture.

Our Vision Maintaining our reputation for compliance with quality service and respect for the environment and our communities.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Environmental regulations We started our operation on four pillars: energy savings, water savings, proper management of solid waste and suppliers.

1 - Energy We conducted information campaigns and training among employees to save energy. Use the computer hardware in low power mode. Change teams that make efficient use of energy. Install saving bulbs. Unplug unused electrical systems. We make the most of natural light. We maintain a good standard of cleanliness in lighting systems. We have an internal policy that includes measures for energy savings.

2 - Water We conducted information campaigns and training among employees to save water. Provide information to users to prevent drips. We monitor monthly water consumption. We have an internal policy that includes measures for saving water.

3 - Proper handling solid waste We have a formal program of waste management, which establishes the separation of materials and delivery to a storage facility to proceed formally with recycling. We train our employees imparting concepts, practices and policies.


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4 - Consumption of products We have a purchasing policy set by giving priority to environmentally friendly products (biodegradable, reusable, recyclable). We use recycled paper or certificate. We developed a Provider Manual, including companies that are environmentally friendly, which is updated regularly.

Code of Ethics Fundamentals Officials should conduct our business, in general, according to ethical standards derived from their status as professionals. So should act according to the principles of loyalty, honesty, good faith, responsibility, honesty, mutual respect, courtesy, sympathy, and in accordance with current legislation.

Rules All must: a) Sustain and practice the principles of deep respect for everyone involved in its function. b) place their professional and personal relationships in a context of seriousness, fairness, kindness, honesty, healthy tolerance, understanding, courtesy and discretion. c) Avoid conduct inside and outside your workplace, in an obvious way impair their professional standing. d) Provide advice and support to customers about their needs and preferences within the limits, scope and prudence that each case merits. e) Save discretion over private situations that may be entrusted to each person according to his possition, without prejudice to compliance with existent the laws and regulations. f ) Encourage clients to respect our culture, traditions and customs in each place to visit, as well as principles of conservation and wildlife rescue. g) Respect for political judgment, philosophical, religious, socio-economic and cultural development of people with whom they associate (partners, suppliers, customers, visitors, etc.)


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

h) To promote and maintain equal treatment in the office, without discrimination for political, religious, ideological, ethnic-cultural-economic, social, and academic needs and gender. i) Develop a permanent attitude of professional development, methodology pertains to its function. j) Provide support and guidance to customers on how to be a tourist developer. k) To refrain from any kind of sexual or physical conduct that could be qualified as sexual harassment in accordance with the provisions of the Law on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace and in Teaching, according to Law No. 7476. l) vehemently defend children and adolescents threatened by CSEC, proceeding according to the terms of our commitment to the Code of Conduct.

Respect to honor Uniglobe Travel Colon officials shall comply at all times and under all circumstances, good name, dignity and honor of his peers and colleagues and shall refrain from insulting language, slander, defamation or value judgments, they can go on decline in the reputation and prestige.

Responsibility to report Uniglobe Colon Travel officials are inhibited solidarity with colleagues whose work is deficient, or morally reprehensible behavior, which proves how seriously reprehensible that denature and discredit their mission. Rather, without resorting to advertising, must report the facts to avoid making concealment. To which must follow the instructions given to the internal complaints procedure.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Obligations of Uniglobe Colon Travel officials. The duties of the officers of the company: a) contribute, in their roles and in their private lives, and informed the deserved professional prestige and moral tourism sector. b) refrain from any expression and action that goes demerit of the company or the industry itself. This is without prejudice to the right and the obligation to take a constructive critical attitude regarding its institutions or its functioning. c) Observe a loyal and responsible attitude in their relationships with people with whom they work, both inside the company and in service activities in other environments that require our operation: with superiors, with administrative and operative not with standing criticizing. Should be responsible for their actions that should be based on the principles of authority, fairness, understanding and respect for the staff in general. d) Support the development of the communities we visited, suggesting practical solutions. e) On the part of the leaders, their subordinates stimulate awareness and supportive team that involves a commitment genuinely free, conscious and rational creator, identified with the interests of the company, the tourism sector and our country .. f ) To comply responsibly with all obligations under the Laws: 7600, Sexual Harassment Law, the Law on Sexual Exploitation of Children, National Archaeological Heritage Act, Law of Wildlife Conservation, Law on Trafficking and Use of Illegal Substances, Forest Law, Environmental Law. Also, use regulations Protected Areas, Adventure Activities and those under the CITES treaty. g) Comply with and enforce the laws and public authorities.

Complaints (procedure) Any person may apply to the Directorate General or head direct a complaint against that officer, colleague, client or visitor who violates the Code of Ethics and internal regulations. This must be in writing, addressed to the Director, General Manager or the Chief in charge.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

The letter should state:

1.The qualities of the person reporting and the person to whom the complaint. 2. Contain a clear and precise presentation of the facts underlying the indictment. 3. Report the date on which these acts occurred. 4. The injured right. 5. The statement of the evidence on which it is based. 6. The address where you want to be communicated to the first decision involving the person reported. 7. Documentary evidence must be provided along with the complaint and, if noted testimony must indicate the full name, the qualities of whom testified and noted the facts of the complaint to be referenced. Suppliers: Uniglobe Colon Travel in fulfilling its commitment as a sustainable company will give priority to suppliers that demonstrate consistency with our environmental and social philosophy, so hire services from companies that implement sustainable practices (supporting the environment and local communities wings). That is why the subcontractors and suppliers to adhere to environmental laws and practices and international human rights. Our staff oversee the ethical behavior of their suppliers and take immediate comprehensive measures in cases calling into question the ethical behavior of its suppliers. Our suppliers must demonstrate absolute respect for and compliance with: Act 7600, Sexual Harassment Law, the Law on Sexual Exploitation of Children, National Archaeological Heritage Act, Law of Wildlife Conservation, Law on Trafficking and Illegal Substance Use , Forest Law, Environmental Law. Also, use regulations Protected Areas, Adventure Activities and those under the CITES treaty. Important note: Periodically our staff will make inspections of the services of our suppliers in order to update the information and verify that they satisfy the conditions required to achieve a global sustainable tourism, to thereby be consistent with our commitment as a social enterprise and environmentally responsible.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Our Policies Why of this definition of policies for tourism Colon The commitment to a sustainable business involves the responsibility for conducting a productive management (product creation, definition of price, customer identification, promotion strategy, operational and administrative work) within sustainable guidelines that will achieve the objectives without harming the ecosystem and protecting the natural and cultural heritage. For this, it is a vitally important policy definition as a guideline for our business actions. Organizational policies are guidelines or decision criteria for selecting strategic alternatives. They are a guideline established to guide the ideas and actions of a company towards achieving goals of sustainability. Through its policies, Tourism Colon shows the importance given to the environment, their willingness to mitigate the potential negative environmental impacts and allows you to have a document that guides their steps in environmental policy. General policies include provisions that govern and ensure sustainable tourism development, in a forward-looking statement and should be considered obligatory for the entire organization.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Environmental Policies The overall objective of the policy is to promote and encourage sustainable best practice guidelines for internal processes, actively contributing to the development of sustainable tourism. A. The overall operation is performed in such a way as contributing effectivily, constructivlily and integrally to generate economic benefits for the entire organization (partners and associates), protecting the environment and respecting the Costa Rican culture and idiosyncrasies. B. Sustainability will be the foundation for the development of the overall operation of tourism Colon, becoming an inherent feature of the services provided. C. The training of our staff always promote an awareness and sense of environmental responsibility, reflected in their job performance. D. Saving water, energy and recycling are fundamental pillars for the fulfillment of our commitment as a responsible company. Thus Colon Tourism will: E. Rational energy use by reducing practices. F. Avoid waste and pollution of water resources to contribute to their conservation. G. Perform proper management of their waste guidelines by reducing, reusing and recycling. As a complement to environmental management, Uniglobe Colon Travel proceeds to: a) Contribute to the conservation of forest resources in the country. b) Contribute to the reduction of air pollution: I. The means of transport used for operations (own or outsourced) must have the RTV up dated. II. Should have all the legal permits up dated. III. Preferably, work with a program to mitigate the impacts to the environment. IV. Gradually comply with relevant national environmental legislation (discharge and reuse of wastewater, hazardous waste, agrochemicals, etc.). V. Ensuring the health and safety conditions suitable for the health of our customers, employees, suppliers and communities in general. VI. Colon Tourism declared itself as a “smoke free tour operator�, prohibiting smoking inside the units carriers (if any private rental) and promoting a healthy, clean and comfortable environment for its customers and visitors.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Social Policies A. They will fight vigorously any tourist activity that violates decency that characterize Costa Ricans or endangers the physical and moral integrity of its employees, customers, visitors and neighbors, and social deterioration. B. We will promote tourism development based on ethics, quality and sustainability, for which tourism Colon used his influence at the level of tourism, politics and business in equal benefit of the company, employees, environment and community. C. All international and national promotion will be in accordance with specific plans to be designed considering the involvement of the main areas of operation, seeking mutual benefits in terms of image promotion and responding to the vision and objectives of the tourist area as a whole. D. It will show visitors the cultures, traditions and customs of our different regions, defending his integrity, respecting the environment and conveying the importance of enjoying the rich culture of our country, without thereby generated negative impacts that threaten people and culture. Uniglobe Colon Travel also works to enforce conservation policies of national and even regional areas. We make a constant and hard work of outreach on Law No. 7495 of Wildlife Conservation, whose main objective is the defense, protection and conservation of flora and fauna in natural conditions (wild). Just as the Environmental Law No. 7554 and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species - CITES). All our employees are trained regarding these laws by providing induction talks, educational information and transmitting any data or information that is of special interest in this topic (news, newspaper, magazines). Our guides will relay this information to our customers so that they know the existing guidelines in our country in this area. In this regard, we will establish a strategic approach emphasizing country’s image on the efforts made in Costa Rica for the conservation of ecosystems and environmental education. Also, our wholesalers will have relevant information, so that they may be part of our efforts. Be part of our supplier evaluation criteria compliance with these laws, which will be done prior knowledge to stakeholders. This means that each of our suppliers must enforce laws while performing the activity, but also take into consideration the level of commitment that each purchase around this issue in practice (training of staff, complaints made, programs implemented).


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

About the Law of Protection of Archaeological Heritage and Wildlife Uniglobe Colon Travel describes himself as a staunch defender of our national archaeological heritage, to which is committed protecting all those cultural goods that are the product of the activities of human groups in the past (specifically, prior or contemporaneous indigenous to the establishment of the Hispanic culture in the country). That is why we shall vehemently combat any situation that threatens the national archaeological heritage through three specific actions: 1) Training of employees on the Act No. 6703 of the National Archaeological Heritage. 2) Disclosure of the Act 3) Formal Complaint to the National Museum in the event of a situation that threatens the heritage. We declare nature lovers with determination and protect all forms of wildlife in our territory, informing our visitors about the provisions of the current Law of Conservation of Wildlife No. 7495 and on the consequences of non-compliance. Do not hesitate to report any case of wild species in captivity or threat (pollution sources or abuse). About the Law Against Commercial Sexual Exploitation Uniglobe Colon Travel declares advocate vehemently for the integrity and rights of Costa Ricans in general, adults, adolescents and children, so that will govern their tourism activities under strict guidelines to law No. 8204 of Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substances , unauthorized drugs, legitimization of capital and related activities; No. 7476 on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace and in Education and Law No. 7899 on the Commercial Sexual Exploitation. Disclose among our employees, customers, suppliers and families that sex with minors in Costa Rica is punishable by imprisonment. Our message to employees, customers, suppliers and families emphasize that you should never blame children and adolescents of the acts which are induced or forced by the operators. Pursue the creation of a culture of “zero tolerance� against all forms of exploitation of children and adolescents in order to change the entrenched cultural patterns that justify authoritarianism, discretion, arbitrariness that adults have with girls, boys and adolescents. In our message to employees, customers, suppliers and families will be insistent on the fact that the problem is not only the responsibility of the State, let alone the victims, their families, or their immediate social environment, so it requires the efforts of the whole society as a whole. In our message to employees, customers, suppliers and families will be insistent that when children and adolescents are sexually exploited many other rights are also violated (the rights to physical and mental health, to education, to life in family, play, recreation) and therefore, these rights must also be returned.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

In our message to employees, customers, suppliers and families will be insistent that children and adolescents should be treated as victims of people who benefit directly or indirectly from commercial sexual exploitation and those who tolerate this situation. Invite, through formal written communication, to be part of the Code of Conduct, guiding them-if necessary-on requirements for signature. We will support at leat one of Paniamor Foundation’ s projects for children protection. About the Law on Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances of unauthorized use. In all touristic programs, Uniglobe Colon Travel is forbiding any kind of deal or trade related to drugs, narcotics and / or psychotropic substances of unauthorized use. In Costa Rica this type of action is punishable by imprisonment. If any case arises, Uniglobe Colon travel will take the necessary measures in terms of complaint (if customers or suppliers are involved) or dismissal (for officials involved). About the Law Against Sexual Harassment in the Workplace and in Education. The company instructs its employees on a procedure for reporting sexual harassment from the beginning of their employment during the induction stage and proceed as provided by law, which establish that any person who incurs on this can be dismissedl without employer liability and / or penalties in terms of compensation payments to the victim and even imprisonment. The Company shall punish severely any hint of sexual harassment towards anyone or any situation that is affected (or) any of its employees during labor management inside or outside the company premises. Information on the laws in question for establishing these policies will be available to its employees, suppliers, customers and family.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Other important actions we have done To protect the environment: 1. We are part of Qadra Project, through which we make hard work with cleaning crews in the area where are our main offices, involving our employees, which we also made a valuable outreach. 2. We have implemented programs to save water and energy, giving training to our staff, implementing internal communication campaigns through signage and messaging. Also saving devices installed for both water and energy. 3. We have a policy of formal sustainability, which is mandatory compliance internally. This iinvites the staff to join during our induction program. 4. We provide our employees talks and training on various topics related to actions we must take to protect the environment, the importance of supporting communities as engaging the customers, among others. 5. We have elaborated Function Manuals so for each staff to know his own action plan and specific measures to be implemented as a way to be consistent with our sustainable philosophy. 6. We inform our customers about our status as a sustainable company, guiding them to get involved directly and we can fulfill our purpose of generating the least possible impact in our operations,

To support communities: 1. We actively support programs for low-income children by joining the Campaign “Books for All�, through which the donations given customers and employees, the are doubled by the company. 2. We organize health activities, giving talks and providing various services such as specialized medical visits. 3. We support the Ross Foundation and support our partners to purchase t-shirts for to be weard as uniform during all Wednesdays and Fridays in October, when this Campaign takes place in the country.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Regulations for tour guides and drivers a) To guide tourists during visits to some or all of the national territory in order to enjoy and respect the national heritage. b) Conduct tourists to recreational facilities, dining and others, mainly those who have been classified as tourista by the Costa Rican Tourism Institute. c) Monitor and prevent tourists from abuses regarding overcharges, or any other derivative of their ignorance of the local laws and customs. d) Provide accurate and truthful information about the operation of the means of transportation, tourism, social or economic reality of the country, the exchange rate, public entertainment, weather, health, housing means, major hospitals, professionals of General medicine and any other matter of interest. e) Testify before the appropriate authorities, any abuse that may occur to tourists. f ) Communicate to tourists the possibility of going to the Costa Rican Tourism Institute’s Complaints to the Consumers Protection Office of the Ministry of Economy, for claims arising from the enjoyment of any tourist service that may affect their interests. g) Assist on the protection of natural and cultural resources of the country. h) Providing security to visitors, provide first aid and manage appropriate action in case of emergency.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

In addition to the functions listed above, should remember that, based on the Regulations of tourist guides No. 31030-MEIC-TUR of January 17, two thousand three, published in La Gaceta No. 52 of March 14, 2003 , Tour Guides are honorary collaborators of the Institute and of the Ministry of Environment and Energy, on the protection and surveillance of the National Heritage Tourist Board and the National Childrens Organizations, fighting against child abuse and sexual exploitation. a) To accomplish fully with all the aspects of these Regulations. b) Avoid any action contrary to the morals and good customs and avoid any type of sexual harassment to tourists. c) Collaborate with the Institute when it is needed . d) Report to the Institute, the travel agencies that may hire tour guides without having the official credential awarded by the ICT. e) Attend any cultural activity or events programed by the ICT as part of their professional growth. f ) To safeguard the country’s environment and protect their culture, its habits. g) Contribute to prevent the occurrence of child sexual exploitation. h) Provide accurate, complete and true information to tourists about the country heritage and culture. i) Carry their official tour guide license on a visible place. j) Tour guides must know the regulations set for the Protected Wildlife areas to visit and in general. k) The tour guide listed as a generalist must provide services to groups not larger than fifty persons. If the group is larger, must request the services of another tour guide, as the regulations established by the Costa Rican Tourism Board.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Procedure of tourist attention for Uniglobe Colon Travel 1 - At the beginning of each tour, Uniglobe Colon Travel must give an introductory lecture on the natural history of the country and on different aspects of the Costa Rican idiosyncrasy. Also, should let the visitors know about our conservation policies as well as of the specific national parks to be visited. This in order to achieve awareness of the management of our nature. 2 - It should invite tourists to cooperate in the proper disposal of solid waste, indicating the places where we put the containers for proper separation. 3 - At the beginning of each tour, the tour guide should explain about the efforts made by Costa Rica in terms of protected areas and national parks, inviting them to collaborate with all the measures taken for the conservations of nature. 4 – To make emphasis in the fact that smoking is forbidden inside the bus and inside all National Parks or protected areas. This rule applies not only for tourists but also to the tour guide and driver. 5 - tourists should be advised in the importance of not taking food or drinks ( excepting their water bottles) with them, while visiting the National Parks, Protected areas or Wildlife Refuse, in order not to generate negative impacts on local wildlife. 6- To guide tourists to avoid, to a maximum, all kind of unnecessary disturbance to wildlife and habitat itself. Noise should be minimized within walking paths, ensuring that visitors keep their distance and not touch species plants. 7 - Remind visitors to always be walking within the marked trails, avoiding leaving them for security reasons. 8 - Tell the tourists that animals should not be fed for any reason, nor leave food waste anywhere except in containers specially for that. 9 - If when entering a trail there is another group of tourists, keep a safe distance between the two groups to avoid altering the environment excessively. 10 - In an emergency situation that is presented with a tourist, the handler must immediately inform any of the Uniglobe Colon Travel Agency officials at headquarters Colon (tel 2547-2500), where staff take immediate action, coordinating as appropriate. 11 - All the tourist areas included in the Uniglobe Colon Travel Agency programs offer great tourist attractions, commercial and cultural, so the tour guide should suggest the tourists to visit and interact with the nearby communities, supporting them by shopping their local products such as souvenirs or food, as well as support any conservation activity.


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

12 - Similarly, tourists should be instructed not to buy souvenirs and / or memories of their trip, or craft items made with wildlife, endangered wood, or any in danger of extinction specie. 13 - Under no circumstances should the tour guide address controversial topics such as religion, politics, and / or criticism to the government of our country. With kindness and skilsl should avoid those subjects, explaining if necessary the tourists that those topics should not be mentioned during the tours. As well, the tour guide should avoid any kind of joke concerning racism, religion or politics that may hurt the tourists feelings

Additional recommendations To achieve optimal levels of sustainability, it is essential to maintain current information on all parties involved in the operation: employees, dealers and suppliers, that is why we would recommend the following websites and documents on laws that can be found online. In case you may need some support, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Recommended Websites

Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT): www.visitcostarica.com Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST): http://www.turismo-sostenible.co.cr/ Ministry of Environment: www.minae.go.cr Ministry of Labour and Social Security: www.ministrabajo.go.cr Links of autonomous environmental administrations Commission on Environment and Development: www.ccad.ws/ National Biodiversity Institute (INBio): www.inbio.ac.cr/ APREFLOFAS: www.preserveplan.org/ ANAI: www.anaicr.org / anai / en / presentation.html Caribbean Conservation Corp.: / www.cccturtle.org/ CATIE: www.catie.co.cr Tropical Science Center: www.cct.or.cr/ CINPE: www.cinpe.una.ac.cr/ EARTH University: www.earth.ac.cr/ FONAFIFO (Forestry Financing Fund): www.fonafifo.com Neotr贸pica Foundation: www.neotropica.org/ Omar Dengo Foundation: www.fod.ac.cr/ Paniamor Foundation: www.paniamor.or.cr FUNDECOR: www.fundecor.org/ Organization for Tropical Studies: www.ots.ac.cr/es/ Rainforest Alliance: www.rainforest-alliance.org/ SINAC: www.sinac.go.cr/


SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Reference legislation Law of Wildlife Conservation, No. 7317. Recent reforms 7495del Law No. 3 May 1995. Law No. 7497 of May 2, 1995 Environmental Organic Law N 째 7554 of October 4, 1996. Forestry Law 7575 of February 13, 1996 Biodiversity Law No. 7788. Bylaws of Biodiversity Executive Decree No. 34433. Law Against Sexual Exploitation of Minors, No. 7899 of May 4, 1970. 7600 Law on Equal Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities Law Against Sexual Harassment in the Workplace and in Education, No. 7476 of December 14, 1994. CITES Convention: International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, July 1, 1975. Psychotropic Drugs and Illegal Substances Act No. 7233, May 21, 91 Fisheries and Aquaculture Act No. 8436, February 10, 2005

Sustainable Tourism  

Sustainable Tourism