Top tips for travel that won’t cost the earth
Corporate Traveller is shining a spotlight on how to take a more sustainable approach to business travel, as all companies have a responsibility to reduce our carbon footprint. The good news is that New Zealand business travellers have the capacity to make small changes, which, as a group, can have a big impact.
1. Fly lightly
Business travellers have mastered the art of packing lightly, but what about flying lightly too? Aircraft burn most of their fuel when ascending and descending, so taking one longer direct flight instead of two shorter ones produces fewer carbon emissions. Plus, you can also reduce paper and printing waste by choosing an e-ticket and e-itinerary, while also paying a few dollars to offset the flight’s carbon emissions.
2. The contrail conundrum
Did you know that contrails, the condensation trails produced by aircraft, contribute to the warming of the atmosphere? During daytime flights the contrails actually reflect sunlight back into the atmosphere away from the earth, but at night they act like clouds that trap heat being radiated from the earth warming the atmosphere. So, choosing daytime flights reduces the warming effect caused by flying.
3. Choose your airline wisely
Airlines globally are investing in ways to reduce their impact, albeit with varying degrees of urgency. On the home front, Air New Zealand is committed to reaching its goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2050.The airline plans to meet this target by focussing on zero emissions aircraft, Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF), operational efficiency and fleet renewal. So, ask your airline partners what they are doing.
4. More seats, less heat
With fewer seats in the cabin, flying business class is less fuel efficient on a per passenger basis. So, if the flight is short, choosing to fly economy is a better environmental choice.
5. Do your groundwork
Most major airports are well connected to the city’s transport network, so jump on the metro, airtrain or take a shuttle bus to your destination. Fewer individual cars on the road, naturally means less emissions.
6. Go green
By choosing a hotel that is close to your meeting or conference means you can walk and get the benefit of exercise while reducing your carbon footprint. Alternatively, many green hotel chains hire e-cars or e-bikes to help guests get around.
7. Sleep with a clear conscience
Choosing your accommodation carefully can make a big impact. Partnering with hotel groups with solid green credentials should be high on your priority list and it’s an easy swap to make. Many groups have implemented environmental initiatives including water conservation and recycling, energy-efficient lighting, kitchen waste recycling, sustainable furnishings and garden walls to control temperature.
8. Skip the buffet
Food waste adds to landfill and methane gas production, so order a meal to suit your appetite to reduce waste. Also opt for local seasonal produce to support farmers and reduce food miles, choose organic food options and select a vegetarian meal from time to time.
As part of the Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG), Corporate Traveller New Zealand is committed to the Group’s Responsible Travel Charter - Worldwise which aims to deliver responsible travel product and to also inspire our suppliers, customers and staff to do the same. Plus, FCTG is a signatory to the United Nations Global Compact.