News

WATCH: This is why we need to put an end to elephant riding

The Treadright Foundation has released its latest video highlighting one of the organisation’s Wildlife projects in India; Wildlife SOS.

Hosted by TreadRight Ambassador Céline Cousteau, the TreadRight led experience brought together a group of dynamic storytellers on a journey of education and compassion in incredible India.

The central goal of their trip was to learn more about Wildlife SOS’s work to save elephants from negligent and abusive situations and bring more attention to the organisation’s influential #RefuseToRide campaign.

Representing Australia were Brinkley Davies, marine biologist and eco-warrior for Contiki, and Sarah Jane Adams who shares a passion for sustainable travel with Adventure World Travel.

Most travellers have no idea of the abuse that elephants must endure to be “tamed” for riding.

They’re poached from the wild as babies, isolated from other elephants, then beaten until they’re so terrified of people they’ll do anything.

This cruel practice is called phajaan, or “breaking of the spirit.” After the elephants are deemed “tame” enough to do what people tell them, these elephants can look forward to decades of difficult, tedious labour with little to no access to good food, fresh water, quality veterinary care, or even the company of other elephants.

Wildlife SOS is working to put an end to this abusive industry.

“It might be your dream to ride elephants, but this is an elephant’s worst nightmare,” said Kartick Satyanarayan, Co-founder & CEO of Wildlife SOS.

“Riding an elephant may seem innocuous considering the large size of the animal, but the reality is quite different, and extremely shocking.

“Coupled with the fact that these elephants are beaten mercilessly to make them ‘ride-able’ and ‘photo-friendly,’ the excruciating pain that elephants suffer through to carry people on their backs only adds to their misery.

“The never-ending demand from tourists for animal sports and entertainment is keeping this grotesque industry alive. If tourists stop riding elephants, elephant abuse and exploitation will automatically end.

“As long as there are huge profits to be made by exploiting these animals, the abuse and exploitation of the animals in the tourism and entertainment industry will persist.”

Much of what takes place in the elephant-riding industry is illegal by Indian law and, as such, Wildlife SOS is petitioning governmental authorities to do all they can to help put an end to the abuse of elephants used for riding in Jaipur, India.

“Elephants are extraordinary animals and it’s natural to want to experience them up close,”  Shannon Guihan, program director, The TreadRight Foundation explained.

“However, responsible travellers will look more closely and begin to understand the decades of pain, suffering, and cruelty that goes into producing that one-off tourist experience and recognise the need to refuse to ride. We’re honoured to help Wildlife SOS spread this message.”

The TreadRight Foundation’s Wildlife pillar works to protect those animal species most at risk of poaching and ill-treatment.

Partnering with leading wildlife organisations like Wildlife SOS, TreadRight works to protect and rehabilitate wildlife populations around the world.

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Destinations

Tourism

Instagram model slammed for vandalising 200-year-old statue

In what appears to be a desperate attempt for more followers, an Insta model has taken to a historic statue with a hammer, and suffered the consequences.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Qantas passenger accuses airline of “fat-shaming” after being booted from exit row seat

A Qantas passenger has accused the airline of “fat-shaming” and bullying him after being removed from an exit row seat for being too large.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

InterContinental Sydney appoints new PR agency

InterContinental Sydney has chosen a new PR agency, which has already hit the ground running by sending us this announcement.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Virgin Australia culls capacity on Brisbane-Cairns route

Have you recently noticed walking a shorter distance to and from the loo on Virgin’s Brisbane-Cairns flights? Discover why here.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Tourism

Uber launches world’s first rideshare submarine experience to Great Barrier Reef

Ridesharing giant Uber has launched underwater trips. However, will riders receive complimentary bottles of water and breath mints, Travel Weekly asks?

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Agent wrap: Star Wars mega-famil chance, Viking’s Eurovision contest winners + more

This wrap has something in it for agents who love Star Wars and Eurovision, so bad news for those who hate both.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Destinations

Want to be part of The Living Room’s fabulous Tahiti prize?

Air Tahiti Nui is giving away not one, but two prizes via 10’s The Living Room. Sadly, neither of them include hunk o’ spunk Dr Chris Brown.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Technology

Amadeus signs landmark deal with Booking.com to boost accommodation content

Amadeus appears to be the new black in the travel industry, with the tech player announcing yet another partnership.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Flavour of the Week: Hilton appoints new GM, management change at CTM, Tourism Solomons CEO’s new role + more

Here’s the latest movers and shakers in the travel industry. As in those who have new roles – not epic dance moves.

Share

CommentComments

Events

REMINDER: Women in Travel Awards early bird ticket deal ends tomorrow!

You know what they say: the early bird gets the worm. So, consider this a worm of the Megascolides australis species.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Agent disappears after being ordered to pay back clients (and allegedly owing franchisor 40K)

This story has got a bit of a Catch Me If You Can aura about it, minus Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks.

Share

CommentComments

Road & Rail

Rail Europe launches summer special for Great Train Journeys

Once again, there isn’t enough road and rail news for us to deliver you a wrap, but we do have this. Or, you can re-read that bullet train story we did last week.

Share

CommentComments