The UK’s largest regional airline, Loganair, has introduced a new initiative that asks tourists to respect and protect the country’s unique island destinations by creating a new ‘island visitor pledge’.
Similar to a programme launched by Iceland tourism authorities, it is believed to be the first airline in the UK to ask their customers to follow guidance to protect the destinations they visit.
Now flying to more airports and island destinations across the UK than any other carrier, accessibility between the regions and islands has grown significantly as the airline continues to enhance connectivity. To showcase the best of Britain’s islands Loganair recently launched its “Loganair Loves Islands” summer campaign, which actively encourages prospective travellers across the UK to support island communities by visiting this summer.
As part of the pledge, targeted communications will be sent to Loganair customers who are due to travel inbound to any of its island destinations. The pledge urges travellers to avoid using plastic bottles, keep gates closed, support local food and drink businesses, respect heritage and archaeological sites and be sensitive to wildlife, flora and fauna.
It was developed by the airline with guidance from island destination marketing organisations, including Promote Shetland, Destination Orkney and Outer Hebrides Tourism, to better understand the specific challenges posed by visitors.
Loganair has been leading the way on the environment, recently implementing its innovative GreenSkies sustainable flying programme. It includes full carbon offsetting for all its flights through accredited carbon offsetting schemes, as well as investing in future flight projects to meet the airline’s target of becoming carbon neutral by 2040.
Luke Lovegrove, Commercial Director, Loganair, said: “We’re extremely proud to be flying the flag for our beautiful but fragile island communities. Following the pandemic, people are continuing to explore and enjoy the many unique attractions we offer right here in the UK, but we must tread as lightly as possible to protect our precious destinations, especially our islands.
“We hope our customers will join us on the next stage of our journey to protect the environment and secure our islands for generations to come.”
David Nicol, Promote Shetland said: “It was great to have Loganair consult us while developing the island visitor pledge.
“It is wonderful to see tourists returning to Shetland this year and experiencing the spectacular sights and sounds of the islands.
“We encourage all travellers to visit responsibly and respect Shetland’s unique wildlife, natural heritage, and incredible archaeology. That way we can all enjoy our islands and help protect them for future generations.”
Maureen Shearer, Orkney Marketing, said: “When visitors come to Orkney, they very much become a part of our community, no matter how long their stay. This pledge is a really positive initiative by Loganair, one that helps our visitors get the best from their time with us, while also highlighting the ways they can help safeguard our local environment.”
Sarah Maclean, CEO, Outer Hebrides Tourism, said: “We are delighted to partner with Loganair in supporting this campaign asking our visitors from across the world to help us look after our islands. The Outer Hebrides is a special place and as we welcome more people to enjoy the environment and culture here, we must all play a part in acting respectfully and responsibly – including leaving no impact on the landscape, giving wildlife space, supporting local businesses and being mindful of our community way of life.”
The islands featured as part of the Loganair Loves Islands campaign are: Shetland, Orkney, Lewis and Harris, Benbecula, Islay, Isle of Man, Barra and Tiree.