Partnership for Responsible Travel

The International Mountain Explorers Connection created the Partnership for Responsible Travel Program to recognize those tour operators committed to fair treatment of the mountain crew. Acceptance as a Partner is based upon the climbing company’s meeting the Guidelines for Proper Porter Treatment on Kilimanjaro through the monitoring activities performed by IMEC’s local initiative, the Kilimanjaro Porters Assistance Project (KPAP).

There is no fee or donation required to be a part of the Partner Program. It is a part of IMEC’s mission to highlight those climbing companies with fair treatment practices. Criteria for acceptance as a Partner:

  • Implementation of systems that ensure fair treatment for the company’s crew.
  • Demonstration of compliance with the proper treatment guidelines.

Impact of the Partner for Responsible Travel Program

IMEC estimates that 7,150 some porters climbing Kilimanjaro with the Partner companies have benefited in the following ways in 2019:

  • Although the government has declared a minimum wage, the salary amounts paid are variable and can be as low as 8-10,000Tsh per day. Because it is mandatory for the Partner companies to pay at least 20,000Tsh per day, the average daily salary payment was 20,847Tsh.
  • Companies have different tipping procedures and climbers may give the guide the tip money assuming s/he will distribute the tip fairly. It is a Partner requirement to have transparency in tipping and KPAP reviews the tipping procedure on every climb. 99.7% of the Partner companies’ climbs had transparent tipping procedures.
  • Porters may eat 1 or 2 meals per day on a climb. The Partner companies are committed to providing 3 meals per day. 315,000 more meals were provided to Partner companies’ porters above the norm.
  • Porters may have poor sleeping accommodations and be overcrowded. Partner company porters slept in good quality tents and had adequate sleeping space 96.5% of the time.
    Partner companies weigh the bags prior to going to the gate. This helps ensure the appropriate number of porters and they are carrying the 20kg weight regulation.

We are experiencing instances of companies using our organization’s name on their website who have not been accepted as a Partner for Responsible Travel. For a current list, please visit the CURRENT PARTNERS section of our website.

All legally licensed climbing companies are welcome to join the Partner for Responsible Travel Program. By choosing to climb with a Partner company, you can rest assured that your porters are taken care of well.

For more information or to register your company, please contact us at [email protected]
Thank you!