The business travel industry is about to enter a new era, as the pandemic has changed the way we work and has also reordered our priorities.

The success of being able to do business and keep employees connected online via Zoom or Teams has been a catalyst for businesses to think differently about their carbon footprint. Many companies have started to review their corporate travel policy, with sustainability now considered key content – which historically was a ‘nice to have’ and now it’s a ‘must have’.
Inntel has started on the journey of being able to support the growing number of clients interested in carbon offsetting and carbon neutral business travel. With this in mind, Inntel have partnered with Trees 4 Travel who share Inntel’s vision of a mindful future in business travel. They offer a comprehensive tracking and offsetting solution which calculates how many trees need to be planted to offset the emissions for a trip. The trees which are planted support the restoring of ecosystems and maintaining of forests to remove CO2 from the air –all for the price of a coffee. Inntel have also made it easier for our clients to filter and identify sustainable hotels and meeting venues via our online booking tool, LOGiC, through our partnerships with Green Tourism and ECOsmart by Greengage.
Before looking at offsetting, businesses should focus on reducing their emissions at the source, by adjusting the behaviours of their employees when it comes to travel. The best way to improve your company’s carbon footprint is through education and a culture which embraces sustainable changes. It can be difficult for people to make a behavioural change if they do not have knowledge and the incentive to do so.

How to build a sustainable strategy for your travel programrgram

The pandemic has allowed travel managers the time to work with their Inntel Client Relationship Manager to review their company travel policy and implement some changes to ensure they are ready to hit the ground running when travel and meetings recommence. These changes include:

Staying green – Some hotel chains are now offering ‘Eco’ brands which place emphasis on an eco-friendly approach

Reducing consumption – Reducing the use of single use plastic for hotel stays and meetings
Smart travel – Combining multiple meetings into a single, longer trip

Alternative travel options – Being aware of the environmental impact of your chosen travel mode and what alternatives could be used

Reporting & Measuring – Measuring CO2 consumption against company environmental objectives and CO2 budgets

Provide the information to bookers in the simplest way

Online booking tools are used by a majority of business travellers to arrange their travel, meetings and events. It is therefore key that the travel management company emphasises sustainability messaging within the booking tool to provide travellers with the information needed to make a conscious decision. Inntel are doing this by providing access to sustainably accredited hotels and venues and showing the comparable CO2 impact for each mode of travel for a given trip. This guidance is going to be key to the success of your overall sustainable strategy.

Carbon offsetting

Carbon offsetting is designed to allow individuals and organisations to compensate on the CO2 emissions created by their journey by paying for a project to reduce an equivalent amount. It is important that everyone works together to reduce the levels of CO2 emissions for tomorrow’s business travellers: According to a study by YouGov: 44% of those born in the late 1990s would like the chance to offset their CO2 emissions when they travel, compared to only 20% of travellers aged 55 or more.
It is likely to be an evolving landscape which businesses will need to navigate after the pandemic as they manage the renewed demand for travel, meetings & events. With this in mind, it is crucial that sustainability is a ‘must have’ in any corporate travel policy. We understand that all these changes can be daunting which is why we recommend working with a travel management company who have their finger on the pulse and are leading the charge towards a greener form of business travel.
Contact us today for an initial conversation – hello@inntel.co.uk