Mad Campers is a Kiwi-owned business that's been making waves in the tourism industry since late 2017. With a focus on giving back to the environment, this 8-person operation is big on respecting New Zealand’s great outdoors and ensuring their travellers not only have the trip of a life time but also that they travel sustainably.
Their #MadAboutNZ hashtag alludes to the company’s passion for New Zealand, and owner Andy Haslett firmly believes the company wouldn’t exist if “New Zealand wasn't an amazing place to be” and a bucket-list destination for overseas visitors.
Mad Campers strives to be an “adventure platform” for its travellers and considers it an “honour when someone chooses to travel with us”.
Mad Campers is determined to be a positive player in the tourism industry. In addition to plans to enhance the eco-efficiency of their vans, Mad Campers is funding trees through the Trees That Count marketplace and offering travellers the option to donate a native tree when they book. They also make time for their small team to get their hands dirty at local planting days and clean-ups.
Haslett’s desire to work with Trees That Count was driven by their mutual future focus, saying that Trees That Count “offer something that grows and that is constantly giving back to NZ”.
To date, Mad Campers has donated over 170 trees to the Trees That Count marketplace, and Andy is keen to see the number grow.
“We really want to try and find ways to get more travellers funding trees," said Andy.
Trees That Count has allocated Mad Campers' funded trees to three projects, including the Paparoa Wildlife Trust, a planting project that has led to 30 Great Spotted Kiwi being raised and released into the wild.
Based in Greymouth, the project’s planting plan evolved around using native trees to mimic the environment young Kiwis would soon experience in the wild.
When asked what advice he would give other businesses, Andy reckons it's just about getting started.
"Find a cause that aligns with your company values and get into it; small improvements now will have great results later on. The reality is if we don’t make changes across the board we might lose some of what we love about New Zealand, it’s really important," said Andy.
"We’re in a really high profile part of the industry, we want to be ahead of any challenges and be a part of the solution."