Golf tourism goes sustainable with Khiri Travel

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Karl Hans and Andre van der Marck
Karl Hans and Andre van der Marck

Golf tourism could have entered a new eco-friendly era, thanks to an initiative by Thailand’s Khiri Travel.

The Bangkok-based DMC has unveiled plans to start to promote sustainable golf itineraries in Thailand, only using courses that try to help the environment, heritage and local community.

The initiative has been made possible by a partnership between Khiri Travel Thailand and Business Golf Thailand (BGT), which was founded by PGA professional Karl Hans.

BGT will handle all aspects of the golf, while Khiri will combine the sport in its tailor-made travel itineraries. Both BGT and Khiri are currently assessing golf courses based on CSR criteria. These include educational and training opportunities for staff, use of local products, energy saving devices, systems to reduce water consumption, measures to protect biodiversity around the course, reduced use of fertilisers and pesticides, and a general commitment to CSR practices and charitable causes.

“We aim to deliver high quality golf tours for caring golfers,” said Hans. “The partnership with Khiri will create value-added golf experiences that appeal to leisure, incentive and FIT market segments who believe that tourism, and even golf tourism, can be a force for good.”

A Belgian national, Hans has been in Thailand for five years and specialises in creating golf events that complement business conferences, sales meetings, management seminars and product launches.

The move into golf tourism marks new territory for Khiri, but the company’s vice president André van der Marck said he had high hopes for the initiative.

“At Khiri we’re committed to innovation and creative partnerships,” said van der Marck. “Karl is keen to uphold responsible values in the golf sector. I’m optimistic about our partnership and what we can achieve.”

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