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Sustainable Business Travel – 10 Tips For More Eco-Friendly Business Trips

Sustainable Business Travel – 10 Tips For More Eco-Friendly Business Trips

Looking for the best tips for a sustainable business trip? Then you've come to the right place! In the business world, many business trips are extremely important for personal exchanges with partners and customers.

But operational travel causes with about 12 million tons of CO2 per year Unfortunately, this also results in considerable greenhouse gas emissions, which climate change but can be avoided in most cases. Companies therefore also have a responsibility to act more sustainably in the area of mobility.

Fortunately, there are more and more ways to make business travel more environmentally friendly and minimize its impact on our planet.

In this article, I would therefore like to introduce you to the best and most effective tips for sustainable business travel. Simply integrate them gradually into your everyday working life to make a real difference. Let's go!

Definition: What is a sustainable business trip?

First of all, I would like to briefly clarify this essential question. A sustainable business trip is generally understood to be a business travel that is carried out taking into account ecological, social and economic aspects.

Their goal is to ecological footprint and minimize the general consumption of resources, reduce the negative impact of travel on the environment and society at the respective destination - and nevertheless achieve the set goals of the own company. This works not least because many operating costs can be saved by deliberately avoiding business trips.

10 tips: What can I do to make a business trip more sustainable?

Business meetings that take place digitally are the most sustainable

Now that we know the definition and benefits of sustainable business travel, we can look at how business trips can be implemented in a more climate-friendly and socially responsible way.

Let yourself be inspired by the following tips and feel free to pass them on to your colleagues to make the Positive change in your company drive forward.

1. avoid business trips as much as possible

The most sustainable business trip is the one that doesn't even take place. This may sound obvious, but people are often so stuck in a professional rut that they no longer immediately recognize the potential savings and sustainable alternatives.

Digital video conferencing and sustainable online meetings make it possible, for example, to hold many business meetings without being physically present. Professional contacts can still be maintained through personal dialog (albeit on screen). This not only saves resources, but also time and costs.

In many cases, even simple Phone calls and mails save the resources potentially used for business travel to and from visits by business partners or customers.

2. Consciously plan arrival and departure in a resource-saving way

Planning is half the battle - and has the potential to make a difference on every business trip. Natural resources to protect the environment. The decision in favor of the most fuel efficient route, the Avoidance of stopovers for air travel, the choice of a professional SaaS platform for business travel management to efficient emission reduction or the sensible Consolidation of business trips and business meetings in your team, for example.

Both at an individual and organizational level, targeted adjustments can be made to combine business travel and sustainability. Ultimately, the aim is to to minimize the number of journeys and business trips as far as possible or to organize them efficiently.

3. use public transportation and bicycles instead of cars and planes

Public transport and cycling - also for business trips

Every meter you by self-propulsion or together with as many other people as possible makes your business trip more sustainable. Traveling by bike (if the distance to customers and business partners allows it) and switching to public transport (such as trains, buses, streetcars and subway trains) have a huge impact in this regard - especially compared to flying or driving. CO2 savings potential.

Quite incidentally makes especially the Physical activity your Everyday working life even healthier. Last but not least, the trips by bike and public transport help you to lower your stress levels.

4. make car journeys and flights as sustainable as possible

You have tried everything, but one particular Business trips cannot be avoided, nor can they be made in an environmentally friendly way by bike, public transport or train? Then you can at least use the following tips and tricks to make your car journeys and flights as sustainable as possible.

Tips for more sustainable business trips

  • Form car pools with colleagues
  • Prefer to travel by electric car (charged with green electricity)
  • Use carpooling and car sharing on site
  • Ensure ideal tire pressure and avoid unnecessary weight in the car
  • Rely on technological tools (e.g., Google Maps to avoid traffic jams).

In my article about sustainable driving you will find many more tips.

Tips for more sustainable business flights

  • Only fly with airlines that actively pursue sustainability initiatives
  • Maintain an appropriate relationship between travel distance and travel duration
  • Select direct flights (i.e. flights without stopovers)
  • Complete several partner and customer appointments directly at the destination

Again, in the linked blog article you will find more Tips for the most environmentally friendly flights.

5. offset CO2 emissions for unavoidable emissions

CO2 compensation makes business trip more environmentally friendly

A very important tip for at least some more sustainable (unavoidable) flights and business trips in general, I have given you deliberately withheld yetoffset the CO2 emissions of your trip financially, if you can Annual climate budget exaggerate.

This works for example via donations and investments in climate protection projectswhich have the effect of reducing CO2 pollution in the earth's atmosphere elsewhere. Of course, it is better to avoid emitting climate-damaging greenhouse gases in the first place - but if traveling on duty cannot be avoided, the CO2 compensation of flights and car journeys is a sensible way of making them as sustainable as possible.

6. avoid paper and plastic waste on the road

Every bit of waste you avoid, conserves natural resources and saves energy for new production, disposal and recycling. So be aware of this when traveling on business, produce as little waste as possible.

This works, for example, by getting reusable water bottles (click here for the best drinking bottles list), which you can refill at public taps. Reusable alternatives such as stainless steel lunch boxes, oilcloths and washable wooden cutlery, are replacing single-use plastic waste, which symbolizes our Disposable society stands.

Also digital documents like e-tickets instead of paper tickets reduce the amount of waste you produce when traveling on business. Simply try to use these measures to be more conscious and appreciative of our planet's natural resources.

Here are matching still some further contributions from the blog that will help you with this:

7. Book a sustainable accommodation

Green accommodation is a good basis for climate-friendly business travel

Fortunately, there are more and more hotels and accommodation with environmentally friendly and socially responsible concepts, which the sustainable travel even much easier.

For example, they rely on the Renewable energy production, Rainwater treatment, conscious Waste avoidance, regional, seasonal, organic and vegetable dishes, as well as a good Connection to local and long-distance public transport.

8. support the local economy and people

Whether in hotel operations, transfers or restaurants. - Many people depend on tourism. And even if your business trip only lasts a few days and you are mostly there on business, you usually use tourism services.

By doing for example locally produced food the international restaurant chains, small bookshops the Internet order and the public transportation the cab or "Uber", you can save CO2, avoid the consequences of the Mass tourism counteract and have a positive sustainable impact on the ground.

9. Act environmentally friendly even at the destination

Regardless of how you have completed the arrival and departure of your business trip - your environmentally conscious Attitude should not end where you are stranger. At the place where you visit customers or meet business partners, you should of course continue to behave in an environmentally friendly manner.

Here are some tips for environmental protection in everyday life that you can implement during your sustainable business trip can:

  • Only buy the things you really need (see minimalist living)
  • Turn off air conditioner and lights when you are not in the room
  • Avoid waste as much as possible (see Zero Waste Lifestyle)
  • Organic, regional, seasonal and vegan food (see vegan life)
  • Use towels and bed linen several times
  • Use public transportation

Tip: Lots of further, helpful advice and ideas for a more sustainable lifestyle I have compiled for you in the linked article.

10. sensitize colleagues and make sustainable business travel easier

Raise awareness among colleagues about environmentally friendly travel to business meetings

Over the course of the weeks and months that you deal with the topic, you will gradually become the Professional for "sustainable business travel". In order to achieve an even greater impact for the environment and society and to Climate protection throughout the company you should now share your findings with your colleagues (and also with your business partners).

Sensitize them for the benefits of environmentally friendly business travel, inform them about the options available to everyone, set a frameto which they can orient themselves - and give them Incentives for doing it.

Organize for example Workshops and trainings, lead Sustainability guidelines and goals for business trips and facilitate the implementation of the measures through free reusable drinking bottles with the company logo or Subsidies for train tickets. It is important to create a sense of unity so that everyone acts together in an increasingly sustainable way.

Making a real difference with sustainable business travel

As you can see, there are many ways to organize your business trips in the future so that you don't have a guilty conscience - and, admittedly, a bad conscience. lasting sense of shame must have. Simply try to implement these tips one by one to continuously reduce the carbon footprint of your business trips and travels.

You have to really want it, though. When planning an environmentally friendly business trip, sustainability goals must clearly take precedence over habits, prestige (e.g. fancy company car or business class domestic flight) and comfort (e.g. air-conditioned company jet).

"Paths are made by walking them."

Erich Kästner (more at Mobility quotes)

So always be aware of why environmentally friendly business travel is worthwhile. Also to master your project, especially in the potentially challenging moments at the beginning of the transition. However, please remember that sustainable action is not a sprint, but a marathon in which every little step counts and missteps are allowed.

Do you have any questions, suggestions or further tips for sustainable business travel? Then I look forward to your comments and your personal experiences.

Stay sustainable,

Christoph from CareElite - Plastic-free living

PS: It's not just long-distance business trips that can be mastered sustainably. How you can daily commute as environmentally friendly as possible in the linked blog post.

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* Links with asterisks are so-called Affiliate linksIf you click on it and buy something, you automatically and actively support my work with, as I receive a small share of the proceeds - and of course nothing changes in the product price. Many thanks for your support and best regards, Christoph!

Christoph Schulz

Christoph Schulz

I'm Christoph, an environmental scientist and author - and here at CareElite I'm campaigning against plastic waste in the environment, climate change and all the other major environmental problems of our time. Together with other environmentally conscious bloggers, I want to give you tips & tricks for a naturally healthy, sustainable life as well as your personal development.

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