FAQs

We have put together the most frequently asked questions about TourCert and our offers. Feel free to contact us if your question remains unanswered.

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What does CSR mean?

CSR stands for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and describes the responsibility of companies for their impact on the environment and society. In order to comply with CSR, companies must meet social and ecological requirements in their core business beyond the legal requirements. CSR does not stand for individual good deeds, but for an attitude and strategic orientation that is anchored in the entire company.

Who is TourCert?

TourCert gGmbH is an innovation and certification company founded in 2009 with headquarters in Stuttgart. It brings together experts from the fields of tourism, science, environment, development and politics. With their many years of experience they stand for qualified training, consulting and certification.

The CSR certification guideline defines the requirements for the CSR system in tourism and regulates the examination and certification system. The independent and honorary CSR Certification Council decides on the award of the seal and the admission of the CSR experts.

Read more about our history and our team here.

What is the TourCert CSR system?

TourCert has developed its own internationally accepted consulting and certification system for the tourism industry. In order to cover the entire value-added chain, tour operators, hotels, destinations and other tourism companies that do not fall into these categories can be certified by TourCert.

The certification process is divided into six consecutive steps. Read more about the six steps to success.

What is so special about the TourCert system?

Key features of the certification are long-term orientation and process orientation. This is the only way to achieve continuous development and improvement of sustainability performance. In order to achieve a constant improvement in performance, TourCert relies on the empowerment of the participating companies and the inclusion of all service partners.

How does the TourCert Check or certification work?

In 5 steps to the TourCert Check

For the TourCert Check, you sign our sustainability guidelines (Step 1) and name a person responsible for sustainability in your company (Step 2). Afterwards, our simple and clear checklist, the TourCert Selfcheck, helps you with self-assessment regarding the sustainability of your products and services (step 3). Improvement measures are derived from the status quo analysis and measures are initiated (step 4). TourCert checks the requirements using a desktop control (step 5).

Read more about the TourCert Check as an ideal introduction to sustainability.

In 6 steps to certification

The certification process comprises the creation of a mission statement (Step 1), the analysis of the status quo (Step 2), the appointment and training of a sustainability officer (Step 3), the preparation of a sustainability report (Step 4), the definition of improvement measures as part of an improvement programme (Step 5) and the final external certification by independent experts (Step 6). After successful initial certification, recertification takes place at regular intervals.

Read more about certification for companies and destinations.

How long does the TourCert Check or certification take?

The processes are carried out alongside the daily business. At the same time, the sustainability manager is also trained.

The TourCert Check takes about two to three weeks. The certification is more comprehensive and takes about 8 months.

Who is responsible for the TourCert Check or certification in the company?

The sustainability processes are coordinated by a sustainability manager. In order to fulfil this task, TourCert’s representative receives a qualification with the e-learning module “Travel for Tomorrow Basic”, a course with a final exam and certificate. In addition, the person responsible is trained in an introductory and strategy workshop.

The respective company should provide its sustainability manager with appropriate (time) resources.

What additional effort is involved for the sustainability manager?

TourCert Check

The person in charge is responsible for processing the self-check and determining improvement measures. For this purpose he/she is in constant contact with the TourCert Certification Office.

Certification

The training of the sustainability manager takes place at the same time as the CSR implementation process in the company. With a mixture of online, presence and practical learning phases, the manager is taught the contents. Upon successful completion, a certificate is awarded. Throughout the entire training process and in preparation for certification, the trainees are accompanied by consultants.

The manager is responsible for data collection and identification of improvement measures as well as annual updates. In addition, he/she supports the Executive Management in making sustainability-related decisions, is responsible for internal and external communication in matters of sustainability and for the qualification and motivation of all employees. For this purpose he/she is in constant contact with the TourCert Certification Office.

Is it possible to fail the TourCert Check or certification at the end of the process?

In order to receive the TourCert Check or certification, the participating companies have to go through certain steps and not only meet process but also performance requirements.

The decision whether a company is certified depends on the test report of the independent expert and the vote of the certification board. Insofar as a company does not yet fulfil individual requirements, certification can be given under certain conditions by the Certification Council. These conditions must then be implemented within a specified period of time. Recommendations can also be made for the TourCert Check if sustainability performance is inadequate. If requirements are not yet met across the board, a company can also fail.

How long is the TourCert Check or certification valid for?

The TourCert Check award can be granted for a maximum of 3 consecutive years; at the latest after 3 years, the company must begin certification, otherwise the TourCert Check award ends. There are occasional exceptions.

For hotels, tour operators and other tourism companies, certification after the initial certification has a duration of two years, and after recertification a duration of three years.

For destinations, certification after initial certification has a duration of three years.

How much does the TourCert Check or certification cost?

The prices for the TourCert Check vary according to company size. Participating companies pay an amount in the first year and a different contribution rate for each subsequent year. The prices start at about 300 euros in the 1st year and 250 euros in the following years for small tour operators with up to 10 employees.

The prices for certification are also graded according to the size of the company. They start at around 900 euros for small companies with up to three employees and revenues of up to 600,000 euros per year.

Are there any funding opportunities?

For companies located in Germany, the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (Bundesministerium für Arbeit und Soziales – BMAS) provides funding for the training of sustainability managers. This support is already included in the prices for group training courses.

What services can I expect?

TourCert’s services for first-time certification include training as a sustainability manager with e-learning course, an all-day introductory workshop, a full-day strategy workshop, remote supervision, the actual certification, an expert opinion and the awarding of certification. Data collection is supported by a web service.

What are TourCert Trainings?

Regardless of certification and the TourCert Check, companies can take advantage of our diverse consulting and training services on various sustainability topics.

You can read more about the training and consulting services we offer here.

Your question was not included?

If your question is not listed or is not answered sufficiently, please do not hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to help you clear up any ambiguities.

Petra Knopp

Coordinator Certifications

petra.knopp@tourcert.org

+49 711 24839713

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