The number of visitors to Galapagos has been increasing rapidly
over the past 20 years. Soon, over 200,000 visitors a year
will be arriving. While the cruise ship visit is the
classic way to see the islands, due to strict limits on the total
number of ships and berths allowed to sail in the islands (thus
helping conserve the islands and the visitor experience), more and
more people are visiting Galapagos by land, on island hopping
To respond to the growing demand for land based services
(hotels, restaurants, taxis, day tripping boats etc.) local
entrepreneurs have been getting into the tourism business in a
large way. Unfortunately, they've often done so outside of
the law or by ignoring regulations. As a result, today in
Galapagos, those that have invested in ensuring their business
respects regulations and safety standards are at times competing
with those that haven't. And those that haven't are
undermining good business practices.
Though the authorities are trying to clamp down on these
uncertified businesses, it's always a bit of a cat and mouse game.
In an effort to help discerning visitors (like you) choose
only authorized service providers, the Ministry of Tourism has
recently launched its "OK Galapagos!"
OK Galapagos is a Ministry of Tourism (Ecuador) public awareness
campaign designed to encourage both visitors and members of the
national and international tourism communities to support legal
service providers in Galapagos. Initiated in September 2011,
this campaign aims to strengthen and give recognition to members of
the formal tourist service sector in Galapagos versus informal
(non-legalized) service providers.
In 2012, visitors to Galapagos can expect to encounter
information about the campaign on their flight from the continent
as well as in the air terminals of Galapagos. Educational
material will be presented in Spanish, English, French and German
(subtitles only) with the objective of raising awareness among
passengers and/or potential visitors to use, prefer and search for
legal or formal service operators during their stay in the
OK Galapagos is good for everyone.
The Ministry of Tourism encourages members of the national and
international tourism communities to ensure that they have full
knowledge of whom they are hiring. Placing precedence on
working with legal service providers in Galapagos is encouraged by
the government for safety. Professionals who have any
questions or concerns about OK Galapagos are encouraged to
When considering services in Galapagos, look for the OK
Galapagos logo. At present, 60% of legal service providers
have been provided with the OK Galapagos sticker to display in a
prominent place in their establishment. Be sure to ask your
service provider if they are a recognized by OK Galapagos.
For more information about the campaign and a complete list of
Certified Touristic Service Providers in Galapagos, please
With your support, OK Galapagos will optimize tourism in the
region as well as help ensure a pleasant, memorable experience for
all visitors to Galapagos.