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Our Top Tips for Sustainable Business Travel

The past year’s events and global slowdown has shown the beauty of the environment around us. It has shown us the beauty of nature and how important it is that we do what we can to protect the environment and encourage it to thrive. That’s where sustainable business travel comes in.

As we return to travel in a personal and business capacity, many of us are thinking of ways to keep the resurgence of nature going for as long as possible. At Ortharize, we’ve built our culture with sustainability in mind and try to promote reducing carbon emissions wherever we can. We’ve put together a list of our favourite tips on how travelers and organisations can reduce their carbon footprint for more sustainable business travel.

Pack light

It goes without saying that travelling with as little as you need will make a small difference when travelling. This is especially true by plane, where every kilo increases the carbon emissions of the trip. Make a list before packing, use innovative packing techniques and don’t bring anything you don’t need- these are great places to start in your journey to environmentally friendly travel.

Travel together

In many organisations, multiple trips occur on the same day and often to the same city or near to each other. Employ a group calendar for your travelling staff and encourage (or incentivise) that they travel together. This is especially useful for those travelling in cars to their journey.

A return car journey from London to Cardiff is equivalent to almost 50 kilograms of CO2 emissions. So by sharing a car you can shave a huge amount of carbon emissions from your organisation’s footprint. The saving of around 25kg of CO2 is equivalent to watching 346 hours of television.

Looking to calculate more carbon emission savings? Head to the London North Easten Railway website’s calculator tool here.

Trains instead of planes

Considering air travel is a big part of sustainable business travel, and it’s an important factor with 30% European travellers flying for business at least once per month (FlyAeolus). Did you know that cutting just one five-hour flight per year would make your carbon footprint a tonne lighter? Where possible, choose a flight provider that shows your the carbon emissions of your trip (like Ortharize), so that when you need to fly; you can minimise the levels of CO2 output from your trip as much as possible.

Not as catchy, but trains are also better than cars. Using the same journey as above from London to Cardiff and back is only around 20 kilograms of CO2 emissions compared to the 50 kilograms in a car. If renting car, ask for the fuel efficiency of the vehicle and encourage travellers to do so before deciding on the model. Fuel efficiency isn’t just good for the environment- it’s good for your bottom line too.

It’s the little things

As a traveler, you can do a number of things that, although small in nature, add up to an impressive contribution to protecting the environment. As an organisation, these measures can be included as suggestions within your company travel policy (or you can use our template here if you haven’t got one). Some of these actions include:

  • Download eTickets instead of printing whenever they are required;
  • Reduce plastic consumption by carrying refillable coffee mugs and reusable water flasks;
  • Reuse towels in hotels by hanging them back up after use;
  • Hang your do not disturb sign to reduce cleaning chemicals being used everyday in your room;
  • Take showers as opposed to baths- they use far less water.

Offset your carbon

As a last resort, you can offset your carbon emissions as an organisation. This is a really simply process of calculating your carbon emissions and then paying an organisation to conduct environmentally friendly and carbon reducing projects on your behalf. These include improving fuel efficiency in the third world, reforestation and the preventing of deforestation.

Finding a supplier is easy enough. The hard part of this is calculating your carbon footprint effectively. Ortharize can help with its carbon emission monitoring solution, which reports on your carbon emissions for all forms of travel into one easy to read and download file, using parameters set by you.

Lower your beer mileage

Yes, it’s a thing! It’s not just about beer, but drinking, eating and sourcing everything you need while away locally. Think about the distance that your pint of beer or meal has had to travel. Many people don’t think about the carbon emission attached to what is on their plate. Eat local delicacies and produce- not only for the environment, but for your own adventurous spirit!

If you’d like to learn more on eating locally and the carbon emission from food, check out this interesting article from Our World in Data.

Leading by example

At Ortharize, we’re showing that we care about the environment not just through words, but through features on our platform. We show our users the emission output of their flights before they book (so you can choose the lowest carbon emitting aircraft or flight), and offer environmentally friendly options (such as Eurostar) to give travellers even more choice. Through our CO2 emissions reporting, companies are also  able to accurately measure the hardest-to-calculate part of an organisation’s carbon footprint— their travel. Using our reports, you can measure individual, team and the entire organisation’s carbon emissions and easily set targets to reduce; helping you with various green qualifications and awards.

Get started today—for free—by creating an account on our website. It takes two minutes to sign your company up and we’re on hand to help with any queries, if you have them. We also offer personalised demos and can help with platform setup through our expert implementation team. And if you need help shaping sustainable and environmentally-friendly travel policies that work for you, we can do that too. Get in touch with us today.

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