Eco-friendly business travel has become an extremely important topic of conversation, and for good reason. Business travel is a crucial part of helping companies connect with one another, but it can also place a huge stain on the environment as carbon emissions get released into the atmosphere. But there are ways that companies can help offset these carbon emissions and work on making business travel more environmentally friendly going forward.
But how exactly can companies make business travel more sustainable, and how does business travel make a significant impact on the environment? Here’s everything we think you should know.
How Many People Travel For Business Each Year?
Business travel is very popular amongst large and small companies alike, as it gives them the chance to meet with other businesses and make genuine connections. And because they’re so crucial to a company’s success, millions of people go on business trips each and every year. In fact, according to Zippia, over 460 million people travel for business in the United States annually.
Does Business Travel Make a Significant Impact on the Environment?
Though business travel can prove to be a significant component of a company’s success, it can also be damaging to the environment. When people drive to their business meetings or fly to attend conferences, carbon emissions are emitted, harming the planet. Another thing to note is that when people choose to fly business class rather than economy, they increase their carbon footprint. Your carbon footprint also increases when you choose to rent a vehicle rather than taking public transportation or walking while on a business trip.
How Can Companies Transition to Eco-Friendly Business Travel?
Many companies are starting to realize that they need to find ways to transition to more eco-friendly business travel. And though they may not be able to completely transition to 100% green travel overnight, there are small steps that businesses can take to start making environmentally-friendly choices. For example, some of the things that companies can do to transition to eco-friendly business travel include:
- Hosting virtual meetings or conferences rather than meeting in person.
- Having employees stay at eco-friendly accommodations.
- Reducing the number of business trips they send employees on each year.
- Encouraging employees to use public transportation rather than renting a vehicle.
- Having employees fly coach instead of business class.
- Sending employees on nonstop flights rather than multi-stop flights.
Tips For Being a More Eco-Friendly Traveler
Use Public Transportation
One of the most simple things that you can do to reduce your carbon footprint while traveling for business is to use public transportation or walk while at your destination. Renting a vehicle during your business trip isn’t the most eco-friendly option, and many destinations have excellent and easy-to-navigate public transportation systems. So, if you have the option, choose to use public transportation.
Sit in Coach Instead of Business Class
Another thing you can do to reduce your carbon footprint while traveling is sit in coach instead of business class. Business class seats typically take up more room on an airplane. And if you sit in a business class seat, you increase your carbon footprint. A lot of the time, coach seats are very comfortable, and you’ll feel good knowing that you are helping the environment.
Bring Reusable Utensils and a Water Bottle
When you go on a business trip, you may eat out at restaurants a lot as you probably won’t have a kitchen to cook food in. And since you’ll be eating at establishments rather than cooking, you may be using plastic utensils and drinking drinks out of plastic bottles. To reduce your waste, pack reusable utensils and a reusable water bottle with you. Reusable utensils are easy to wash, and you can keep refilling your water bottle repeatedly.
Download Your Travel Documents on Your Phone
We are so fortunate to live in an age where we can access all of our travel documents on our electronic devices. And that’s exactly why we should all utilize this incredible technology while traveling. Instead of printing out your airline tickets and other travel documents, download them onto your phone. This helps to reduce waste and is one small step to becoming a more eco-friendly traveler.
Have an upcoming business trip and need a passport or visa? We can help! Visit the Swift Passport and Visa Services website to start the application process, complete checkout, and send in your documents. Our team of travel professionals will then process your application and send your passport or visa to you once it is ready. No matter where you plan on going for your business trip, we’ll get you there!