Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) Adventure Champions are the vanguards of the adventure travel industry having been members of ATTA and leaders in the community for a minimum of 15 years. They are true believers in the power of adventure travel and have made an impact on the direction of ATTA and on the industry as a whole. To honor their commitment to their ethos and lasting contribution to the adventure travel industry we are spotlighting Adventure Champions through a series of interviews
Tour Operator – Adventure Travel Wholesaler
ATTA Member since 2005
Introducing Sue Badyari, World Expeditions CEO
Tell us about World Expeditions:
Established in 1975, World Expeditions is one of the world's original trekking and active travel companies offering BIG adventures with a small footprint to every continent on earth. Our vision is to leave the world a better place, environmentally and socially, by following our Thoughtful Travel Charter. We aim to connect people with the natural world and different cultures in an active, immersive, social, safe, and fun environment and strive to deliver high-quality, expedition-style experiences led by purpose and at an attractive price point for our travellers.
Why have you stayed an ATTA member for 15+ years?
We believe that adventure travel, particularly the active outdoor exploration, is the best way for travellers to test their limits, have a positive impact in the world and to grow personally through the experience. We share the ATTA's mission to empower the global travel community and to protect natural and cultural capital while creating economic value that benefits both trade members and destinations. Our collaboration means we can offer our knowledge, experience, and support to members as well as continue to learn how we can keep being better in this exciting landscape.
How has your company/destination changed over the last 15 years?:
We have remained true to our original origins, a philosophy that our tourism activities must be sustainable and provide real benefits to the host communities and engagement with local leaders. This approach was forged with our first trek in Nepal in 1975, which invited like-minded travellers to immerse in nature with a leave no trace policy. Though our ambitions and destinations have broadened. We have continually evolved our Thoughtful Travel Charter (our responsible travel KPI's) to consider the evolving challenges facing the world's landscapes and cultures and have also developed new styles of active travel, particularly self-guided trips, and remote travel to take pressure off ‘over crowding’. In addition, we’ve diversified our portfolio of destinations and focus on domestic operations in the regions we have local offices which leans into an important pillar of supporting domestic tourism.
What is the greatest force that drives you to work every day?
Working alongside great people is a big driver but also knowing the positive impact we are having in employing people across the globe, empowering them to be the best they can be in the field of adventure travel, and seeing the transformative affects of our tours for our travellers.
Reading the feedback from them, how we've helped them achieve their aspirations, connected them with cultures, and acknowledging how our style of travel helps spreads their travel dollars to more remote communities that usually don't benefit from tourism, are all reminders we are making a positive difference for our travellers, their host communities and our ground crew around the world. That's a very powerful force.
What gives you hope about the next generation of adventure travel leaders?
The growing ATTA community is a hub for leaders who actively want to do good in the world. That legacy will be handed down to the next generation of leaders in our industry. It gives us great hope that they’ll be the recipients of a lot of groundbreaking work and can use those good foundations to continue to grow in the industry and keep its visions on track and evolving.
What is your advice for young adventure travel companies?
Know your niche in the sector, adventure travel has a broad definition, and make sure you spread your risk so when a political, natural, or other types of disaster occurs that mean you can no longer operate in one area, you have other products to fall back on.
What gets you excited about the future of adventure travel?
Finding new places to explore under my own steam.