Photos: TripAdvisor Launches World Heritage Campaign; Calls on the World's Largest Travel Community to Help Protect the World's Most Important Places
TripAdvisor Pledges $1.5 Million in Support and Traveler Feedback to UNESCO Survey Names Top Global Destinations Americans Want to Protect; 72% Would Do More to Help if They Knew How
NEWTON, Mass., Oct. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- TripAdvisor(®), the world's most popular and largest travel community, today kicked off the TripAdvisor World Heritage Campaign and has pledged to support the UNESCO World Heritage Centre by making a call to action for the 25 million monthly visitors on TripAdvisor to help protect the places around the world that matter the most.
To view the Multimedia News Release, go to: http://multivu.prnewswire.com/mnr/tripadvisor/37979/
Giving Travelers the "Write Idea" to Help
TripAdvisor is encouraging the contribution of reviews and opinions from its large and passionate community of millions of members to provide much needed information about the condition of World Heritage sites so they may be better protected. In order to compile traveler feedback on nearly 900 World Heritage sites across the globe, UNESCO's World Heritage Centre invited TripAdvisor, via its millions of members and technological expertise, to provide traveler insights and support to the Centre.
As part of the two-year campaign, TripAdvisor has also pledged to donate up to $1.5 million U.S. of support, including a cash donation that will be allocated to UNESCO World Heritage initiatives. Travelers can learn more about how to help at www.tripadvisor.com/worldheritage.
Survey Shows Travelers Would Do More to Help if They Knew How
TripAdvisor conducted a World Heritage site survey of more than 2,500 U.S. respondents to determine traveler interest in and knowledge of culturally and naturally significant sites, as well as sustainable and responsible tourism. According to the survey:
Top 10 Global Sites U.S. Travelers are Most Concerned About Preserving and Protecting
3. Yellowstone National Park
4. Acropolis, Athens
5. Yosemite National Park
6. Venice and its Lagoon
7. Redwood National and State Parks
9. Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls
10. Stonehenge, Avebury and Associated Sites
Seventy-two percent of U.S. respondents said they would do more to help protect sites of historical, cultural, or natural significance if they had more information on how they could help.
Sixty-six percent said they are "very concerned" about protecting sites of historical, cultural and environmental significance around the world, and 31 percent are "somewhat concerned." Fifty-three percent of U.S. respondents said they care more about historical, cultural or environmental destinations in other countries.
Twenty-six percent of U.S. respondents said they are involved in supporting or protecting sites of historical, cultural and environmental significance around the world.
Among those helping, 65 percent are donating money and 31 percent are actively encouraging decision makers to take necessary measures to help, such as with letters and phone calls.
The main reason respondents are not already helping? According to survey results, 29 percent don't know what they can do to help, and an additional 29 percent said they are not involved because they are uncertain where their money is going. Twenty-five percent said they are unable to donate.
What Gets Them Going
Seventy-five percent of those surveyed said they are "very interested" in visiting sites of historical, cultural or environmental significance around the world. When asked where they spend the majority of their time on vacation, 61 percent cited visiting historical or cultural attractions such as the Alhambra in Spain, the Pyramids in Egypt or the Statue of Liberty in New York City.
World Heritage for About a Half
Fifty-five percent of U.S. respondents have visited a World Heritage site in their lifetime. Fifteen percent have never heard of a World Heritage site and 23 percent are not sure if they have ever visited one of the sites. Fifty-three percent plan to visit or are interested in visiting somewhere with a World Heritage site nearby in the future.
Top 5 Steps U.S. Travelers Take to Contribute to Sustainable and Responsible Tourism
1. 82% Participate in their hotel's linen/towel reuse program
2. 75% Recycle and or reuse plastic bottles and cans
3. 60% Keep themselves informed about the fragility of certain destinations and pay attention to the advice given when visiting
4. 58% Turn off/unplug electronic devices when not in their hotel room
5. 54% Walk, bike or take public transportation as much as possible
Top 5 Historically or Culturally Significant Destinations in the World
1. Acropolis, Athens
2. Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls
3. Auschwitz Birkenau
4. Historic Center of Florence
5. Galapagos Islands
Top 5 Historically or Culturally Significant Destinations in the U.S.
1. Statue of Liberty
2. Grand Canyon National Park
3. Independence Hall
4. Yellowstone National Park
5. Yosemite National Park
Top 5 Environmentally or Naturally Significant Destinations in the World
1. Grand Canyon National Park
2. Galapagos Islands
3. Yellowstone National Park
4. Yosemite National Park
5. Redwood National and State Parks
Top 5 Environmentally or Naturally Significant Destinations in the U.S.
1. Grand Canyon National Park
2. Yellowstone National Park
3. Yosemite National Park
4. Redwood National and State Parks
5. Everglades National Park
Top 10 Places Every Traveler Should See in their Lifetime
1. New York City
5. Washington, D.C.
"Travelers clearly want to do more to help protect sites around the world that matter, but are hungry for information on what they can do to contribute," said Christine Petersen, chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor. "By submitting reviews on the condition of World Heritage sites, TripAdvisor travelers can provide UNESCO with much needed information to help preserve the places we cherish for generations to come."
Francesco Bandarin, Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, said: "Because of TripAdvisor's excellent reach to their member community, we can, together, raise awareness of World Heritage as well as receive member feedback about sites. This certainly helps us flag site issues and provides useful information on how World Heritage travelers engage with the sites and their communities. We are looking forward to partnering with TripAdvisor on this initiative."
About TripAdvisor Media Network
TripAdvisor® Media Network, operated by TripAdvisor, LLC, attracts more than 36 million monthly visitors* across 15 popular travel brands: TripAdvisor®, www.airfarewatchdog.com, www.bookingbuddy.com, www.cruisecritic.com, www.familyvacationcritic.com, www.flipkey.com, www.frequentflier.com, www.holidaywatchdog.com, www.independenttraveler.com, www.onetime.com, www.seatguru.com, www.smartertravel.com, www.travel-library.com, www.travelpod.com and www.virtualtourist.com. TripAdvisor-branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, with more than 25 million monthly visitors*, 11 million registered members and 25 million reviews and opinions. Featuring real advice from real travelers, TripAdvisor-branded sites cover more than one million destinations, hotels, restaurants and attractions and operate in the U.S. (http://www.tripadvisor.com), the U.K. (http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk), Ireland (http://www.tripadvisor.ie), France (http://www.tripadvisor.fr), Germany (http://www.tripadvisor.de), Italy (http://www.tripadvisor.it), Spain (http://www.tripadvisor.es), India (http://www.tripadvisor.in), Japan (http://www.tripadvisor.jp), Portugal and Brazil (http://www.tripadvisor.com.br), Sweden (http://www.tripadvisor.se), and The Netherlands (http://nl.tripadvisor.com). TripAdvisor also operates in China under the brand daodao.com (http://www.daodao.com). TripAdvisor® Media Network provides travel suppliers with graphical advertising opportunities and a cost-per-click marketing platform. Collectively, the sites comprising the TripAdvisor Media Network have won hundreds of awards and accolades from press and industry worldwide. TripAdvisor and the sites comprising the TripAdvisor Media Network are operating companies of Expedia, Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE).
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*Source: comScore Media Metrix, July 2009