Agoda, a global digital travel platform, has expanded its partnership with World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) to support three additional WWF projects as a continuation of its Eco Deals program which launched in 2022 and supported marine habitat restoration in Southeast Asia.
New for 2023, Agoda’s support will extend to Thailand, Viet Nam, Cambodia, and India, following last year’s donation drive in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and the Philippines.
Building on success of the 2022 campaign, which supported WWF’s efforts Agoda has donated USD 150,000 to raise awareness about responsible tourism, enabling the restoration of marine habitats such as coral reefs and mangroves in Southeast Asia, and protecting wildlife affected by floods in Australia.
In this second year, the campaign is held in cooperation with accommodation partners in eight Asian countries, with Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines taking part for the second year in a row and Thailand, Viet Nam, Cambodia and India as new countries to the program. Agoda and WWF have carefully identified important habitats for internationally endangered wildlife including Kuiburi National Park in Thailand, YokDon National Park, the second biggest national park in Viet Nam and Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park in the Philippines, inscribed by UNESCO as a world heritage site.
For every Eco Deals booking made at participating properties, Agoda will donate a dollar to WWF’s marine, forest and wildlife conservation programmes in popular tourist destinations, with a minimum commitment of USD 160,000 and a donation target of USD 250,000. The campaign will start from 2 March – 2 September 2023.
With the Eco deals campaign, accommodation partners can offer discounted rates of up to 15%. In return, participating partners will be highlighted with the Eco Deals Badge and be featured across various Agoda product and marketing touchpoints, including social media, banner promotions, customer emails and in app pop-ups to increase visibility and additional bookings. Consumers will also be able to easily browse through their ideal Eco deals through Agoda’s dedicated landing pages that are optimised for both desktop and mobile.
Enric Casals, Regional Vice President of Southeast Asia and Oceania, Agoda: “Agoda is committed to creating a sustainable travel ecosystem that maximizes the benefits of travel while minimizing negative environmental and societal effects. We believe that many of today’s travelers share the same desire to protect the world around us, and our expanded Eco Deals program gives our customers the chance to travel to their favorite destinations with the knowledge that they are also supporting the preservation of local wildlife and environments.
Agoda’s comprehensive marketing campaign to support the Eco Deals launch will ensure partners enjoy higher exposure, visibility, and click-throughs. With dedicated landing pages showcasing special rates on desktop and mobile. Customers who want to travel to these countries and want to make a positive environmental impact during their trip can easily access and browse the range of accommodations that are most suited to their desire. Agoda Eco Deals properties will also be supported by optimisation of various marketing channels such as email marketing, public relations and social media.”
Raghunathan, Chief Executive Officer, WWF-Singapore: “We are delighted to partner with Agoda for the second consecutive year. We are grateful for their support of the several conservation programmes that we will undertake to protect the rich biodiversity in Asia. This partnership will enable us to expand our efforts to restore and protect critical habitats, including employing more rangers and setting up camera traps to monitor wildlife populations.”
This initiative is one of the ways in which Agoda is working towards sustainable travel and environmental conservation.
Additionally, Agoda spearheads other sustainable travel initiatives such as a community-based tourism support program in Thailand in partnership with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), and hotel sustainability courses in Taiwan and Singapore in partnership with the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC).
Interested hotel partners can reach out to the Market Manager for more information.
Agoda will provide financial support to local WWF conservation programs in each of the eight markets participating in the Eco Deals campaign.
Singapore – Stop Illegal Wildlife Trade Trafficking
Singapore is one of the major transshipment hubs for Illegal Wildlife Trade Trafficking (IWT) in the region. Recently, notable seizures have occurred in Singapore, including 34 kilograms of rhinoceros horns in 2022, 37,500 kilograms of pangolin scales, and 8,800 kilograms of ivory in 2019. Agoda’s support will help create an AI model for detection and identification of IWT listings on ecommerce and social platforms to help prevent sales being completed.
Malaysia – Strengthening Tiger Conservation
The biggest threat to some of Malaysia’s last remaining tigers is poaching. This WWF project aims to increase the tiger population in Belum-Temenggor to at least 80 individuals by 2030. To do this, local anti-poaching patrol teams need to be equipped to remove snares, identify poaching hotspots and set up camera traps to monitor the tiger population. Funding from the Eco Deals campaign will make this possible.
Philippines – Support Rangers in Tubbataha
Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the largest no-take marine protected area (MPA) in the Philippines. Home to threatened and near-threatened marine species, Tubbataha is located at the apex of Coral Triangle, the global center of marine biodiversity. However, climate change, marine pollution, and perennial concerns for illegal fishing threaten the park. Agoda’s donation will support compliance management, led by the marine park rangers, as part of Tubbataha’s biodiversity and protection, research, monitoring, and restoration program.
Indonesia – Thirty Hills Ecosystem Restoration Concession: Restore Degraded Rainforest
Thirty Hills restoration concession, Central Sumatra is a critical wildlife habitat for endangered species including Elephants, Tigers, and Orangutans. The rainforest supports the livelihoods of indigenous communities such as Orang Rimba and Talang Mamak tribes. This support will help to restore deforested areas and improve the connectivity of wildlife habitats, support indigenous communities, and conduct forest patrolling and wildlife monitoring to prevent forest and wildlife crime
Thailand – Elephant Conservation in Kuiburi National Park
Elephants, tigers and other endangered wildlife living in the Mekong region are threatened by farmers surrounding the national park. It’s important to improve elephant protection and management, reduce human-elephant conflict, and reduce poaching to improve the conservation of wildlife and natural habitats. The donation is used to ensure adequate water sources during droughts, to increase the number of grass feeding areas for elephants to prevent crop damage, and to train patrols to improve patrols and prevent conflict.
India – Protecting Wildlife and Habitat
Critical ecosystems such as rivers, oceans, forests, and mountains are home to key species such as tigers, rhinoceros, elephants, red panda, snow leopard, nilgiri tahr, gangetic dolphin, mahseer, otter and the gharial. The donation from Agoda will help WWF address the degradation of wildlife corridors and establish systems to conserve and secure wildlife habitats supporting populations of threatened species across a variety of landscapes.
Viet Nam– Supporting Elephant Protection
The Yok Don National Park (YDNP) in Viet Nam’s Daklak province is a priority ecological landscape with critical populations of banteng, tigers and large water birds. It also supports the largest wild Asian elephant population remaining in Viet Nam, which is under threat from poaching. The donation from Agoda will help train the rangers team and technical staff, as well providing SMART Connect and SMART Mobile equipment to maintain connections between rangers while they patrol the forest.
Cambodia – Supporting Rangers in the Eastern Plains Landscape
The Eastern Plains Landscape (EPL) is an extensive protected area covering 8 times the size of Singapore. The irreplaceable dry forests in the area are home to globally significant populations of wild banteng, Asian elephants, Indochinese leopards and much more. Being such a vast biologically important region, it needs over 90 rangers to help counter high levels of illegal logging and poaching. Agoda’s donation will support the monthly salaries and equipments for the rangers to ensure that much needed anti-poaching patrols are conducted throughout the year.