The trends of travel is changing rapidly and in Beyond X Boundaries Founder, David Song's words, "faster than a Shinkansen". Indeed, and there is a pressing need to address the shifting paradigms that presents itself in today's world of travel. At Beyond X Boundaries, we felt compelled to understand deeper behind the forces of change, to adapt to today's challenge and create for tomorrow, the impacts of tourism and its pivotal role in a destination's sustainability.
What's Behind the tagline "Mavericks of Experiential Travel"?
Being unorthodox and sometimes an indie approach to designing itineraries and travel products mean that we have as much fair share of industry friends and partners as "enemies" - basically products that we do not subscribe to or obligations to promote even with the rich promises of greater commissions. Yet as much as Beyond X Boundaries Founder, David Song often describing the company as a "Rebellious Vagabond", we do work well with trade partners and tourism organizations. Just that, we take the word "redefining" to a whole new level of perception and create our products that are unique and signature. This then creates a "business" that focuses beyond the dollars and cents to create a connection between the traveler and the destination. We are simply not in the business of being salesmen/women or being Yes men/women. Therefore in a nutshell, "Mavericks of Experiential Travel" best describes our model .
Most travelers would not care and sadly, many travel companies don't either because fundamentally, why should Sustainable Tourism be an important aspect in their business model? At Beyond X Boundaries, it is a vital component to our DNA because with sustainable tourism as part of the bigger picture, we design products that minimize negative impacts caused to the destinations, to culture and heritage, to wildlife and nature and finally the social happiness of the people. A good example will be Bhutan, almost a reclusive destination as recent as 10 years ago before its rapid rise and gradual ascend to one of the most sought-after destinations in Asia. Despite its attempts to maintaining quality tourism, companies with less compelled approaches to "High Quality Low Impact" models have found a way to bypass the good work done by the Bhutan Tourism Council and today, we see hundreds if not thousands of tourists walking up and down the Tiger's Nest.
Demand then promotes supply and within a blink of an eye, hundreds of travel agents spring up in Bhutan, each offering almost the same products with little to no differentiation and driven by competition, each outdo the other with falling prices, eventually creating lesser of an income to the end beneficiaries - the people of Bhutan. In Beyond X Boundaries' perspectives, this is an extremely dangerous business model where not only sustainability gets compromised, the impacts it has on the locals - farmers, villagers and their way of life has been seriously changed. In studies shown, for every USD$10 earned by the local companies, less than USD$0.10 goes back to the communities - many of them impoverished and unable to fund sufficiently for the development of schools, medical facilities and so on. Social problems then starts to engulf the locals and a great example of that are the many popular destinations in Thailand, a prime demonstration of how a failed tourism model ruins its status in the world of travel.
As a business, we do not have the obligation but if we think like many of our contemporaries and peers do, then the world will be ruined by capitalism. Beyond X Boundaries's ingrained ethos is to contribute and be an active force for change, to bring together connection and seeking to eliminate prejudice and negative business practices. Partners that work with us are critically screened in order to establish the most aligned visions and shared principles. We do not solicit funds through means of donations but a percentage of our revenue goes toward aids be it in disaster relief, wildlife conservation, community building and poverty eradication. We hope our clients help us in this noble vision of creating a better world, a world with more smiles than frowns and to be better travelers ourselves. The more we travel, the better educated we become. After all, Travel Is The Best Education.