Rules, Guidelines & Terms (Last update: 20 August 2017)
ECOCLUB.com - International Ecotourism Club operates a unique Ecolodge Rating programme based on our Ecological Tourism Criteria. Launched in January 2008, our rating process keeps evolving but from day one our aim was to avoid conflicts of interest and minimise our rating systems impact on the environment. Therefore the whole process is completed online and ratings are determined in a transparent and direct democratic manner: a public vote by ECOCLUB.com Members, without the ECOCLUB.com
ECOCLUB.com Ecolodge Rating is available, free of charge, to eco-friendly accommodation facilities, such as Lodges, Boutique Hotels, B&Bs, Agritourism facilities, that have been in operation, under the current ownership, for at least one year.
To see the ECOCLUB.com Rated Ecolodges click here.
STEP 1: The Ecolodge Owner completes an online application to express interest in being Rated.
Eligible applicants will be asked to complete the ECOCLUB.com Ecolodge Rating Questionnaire to the best of their ability and explain in detail, providing pictorial and video evidence on how they meet each one of our five criteria.
STEP 2: Ecolodge Rating Questionnaire Completion
On receipt of the answers, we will use the Questionnaire Replies to prepare the Ecolodge Rating Page. We reserve the right to edit text and images for clarity & space but we will never alter or enhance replies.
STEP 3: ECOCLUB.com Member Vote
We will then ask ECOCLUB.com Members who have been Members for at least 1 Year to review the Ecolodge Rating Page within 60 days and to offer a Rating. Ratings are submitted online and are eponymous so that everyone knows who rated. We ask each Member to vote using the following method: each criterion section in the Rating Questionnaire is of equal weight. The maximum rating score that can be awarded in each section is 5, and the minimum 0; when a criterion is fully met, 5 points should be awarded, 4 points when it is almost fully met, 3 points when it is partly met, 2 points when it is not met, but considerable effort is currently being made, 1 point when it is not met but some effort has been made, and no points at all if it is not at all met and no apparent effort has been made. The average of all ratings received is then calculated and becomes the ECOCLUB.com Ecolodge Rating. The ECOCLUB.com team does not vote. For maximum transparency, all voter names and their ratings will be published. Members who have a conflict of interest (who have or had a professional or other relationship with the property being rated) are not allowed to vote. When the 60 day Rating period has passed and if at least 30 Members have rated (if not it will be extended until at least 30 Members have rated) and irrespective of what the rating is - so that there is no pressure to achieve a minimum rating - the accommodation facility will be recognised as an "ECOCLUB.com Rated Ecolodge". A personalised Logo will be produced for display (optional) on the Ecolodge's website. If the Logo is displayed, we ask that it is linked to the Ecolodge's ECOCLUB.com Rating Page for verification purposes. That's it! (If you have any suggestions on how we may improve this process, please contact us)
1. Non-Eligible Facilities: Unofficial facilities, unlicensed facilities or facilities engaging in tax avoidance or tax evasion. Facilities which make any sort of discrimination. Facilities with captive wild animal displays and facilities associated with nature-consumptive leisure activities such as hunting, game fishing or fly-fishing. We reserve the right not to accept an Ecolodge Rating Application if we feel it is not compatible or goes against the ECOCLUB.com philosophy and aims, to withdraw a rating if credible evidence which contradicts claims in the rating application emerges, or to suspend the Rating Process if there is a significant change in the facility details or surrounding area circumstances (e.g. war, civil unrest or violence), or if the Ecolodge ceases to operate or is under new ownership. (The new owners are welcome to start a new rating application).
2. Rating Duration: Applicants do not have the right to veto or to request that their ECOCLUB.com Ecolodge Rating Page is hidden if they find it unfavourable. All Rating Pages are permanently displayed. When there is a new Rating for a Lodge, the old Rating Page will also be displayed for comparison purposes. However, we reserve the right to withdraw a rating if credible evidence which contradicts claims in the rating application emerges, if there is a significant change in the facility details or surrounding area circumstances (e.g. war, civil unrest or violence) if the Ecolodge ceases to operate or is under new ownership. Applicants may request a new rating two years after the previous rating completion date.
To initiate the ECOCLUB.com Ecolodge Rating procedure, please complete the online rating application form.