Travel incentives are a powerful tool for developing business success. They can increase productivity, employee retention, and generate impressive ROI. However, the travel industry has come under fire recently for its impact on the environment and greenhouse emissions. As concern for climate health continues to rise, our outlook on travel is changing.
Does this mean you should avoid corporate travel incentive programs? Definitely not. Travel is a fantastic opportunity for both business and personal growth and can propel your brand forward to new and exciting heights. To secure both great travel incentive programs and sustainable operating practices, all you have to do is look at ways to make sure your trips consider the potential impact on our environment and take steps to change that.
In this article, experts in corporate incentive travel, Banks Sadler, explain how.
Choose Your Incentive Travel Transport Carefully
Transport is a major factor in environmental tourism and sustainable travel. Air travel, in particular, produces huge amounts of greenhouse gas emissions and contributes heavily to climate change. No travel incentive can be complete without actual travel elements, but all sustainable incentive travel programs should be aware of the impacts of getting from Point A to Point B.
Simple solutions are to reduce the distance travelled and therefore, the amount of energy burned to reach the destination. A three-hour flight is far more sustainable than an eleven-hour flight. You can also opt for alternative travel arrangements. Destinations that can be reached by rail or group coach trips are the most sustainable forms of travel incentive locations.
Plan Incentive Trips around Sustainable Accommodation
Where you stay makes a big difference to the environmental impact of your trip. Accommodation built around sustainability supports better practices, reduces wastage, and cuts down on the emissions of your travel program. When arranging incentive travel, search for hotels, resorts, or other hospitality providers that not only promise sustainable accommodation but also have certification or evidence to back up their claims.
With a rise in ecotourism comes the risk of underhanded businesses attempting to cash in with false promises. If you’re committed to finding sustainable accommodation for your incentive travel rewards, talk to the team at Banks Sadler; our experts can help you find the best options.
Take Advantage of New Travel Experiences and Eat Local
Many travel destinations pride themselves on local cuisine, so why not indulge your employees? Not only does it support local business and allow your staff to absorb themselves in regional culture, but it also opens opportunities for sustainable incentive travel. Food is more likely to be locally sourced by nearby businesses, lowering the impact on the environment through reduced reliance on shipping and industrial activity for food supplies. Sourcing locally also puts more money into regional economies to continue these sustainable environmentally-friendly practices.
Arrange Sustainable Activities
There are essentially four parts to any good travel experience:
- The transport
- The accommodation
- The food
What’s missing? Experiences and activities!
When we travel somewhere, we want to experience a new and exciting world. Part of incentive travel is opening your employees up to excursions, entertainment, and cultural pursuits. These opportunities are really what makes the trip worth all the extra hard work. They are also excellent for team building and creating a workforce community.
What your employees get up to on their reward program though, can have a big effect on how sustainable the incentive travel trip is.
Activities and excursions have their own environmental impact, which means consideration is needed to reduce said impact. The best opportunities involve human-powered experiences, such as walking around local cities, going hiking, cycling or sailing. Activities don’t have to be limited in this manner, as many tour operators and guide groups will offer tours and experiences developed with sustainability in mind. The important thing to do is seek out these opportunities and find activities that support your commitment to sustainable travel.
Carbon Offset Your Trip
Despite all your best efforts, sustainable travel is challenging to manage. Hitting net-zero emissions is going to be impossible without intense costs and massive efforts on the part of yourself and your employees. When you are looking to offer a rewarding and exciting experience, this may not be conducive to the goals you set for your incentive travel plans.
But that doesn’t mean you can’t do anything about your environmental impact.
Carbon offset programs enable you to invest in our planet’s future. The process is straightforward. All you have to do is work out roughly how much carbon was emitted as a result of your incentive travel arrangements; most schemes have handy calculators to help you crunch the numbers. Then, you contribute to environmental plans, such as planting trees, to balance out your environmental impact.
We encourage you to follow all the steps in this article to cut your carbon footprint. Carbon offsetting is a great way to support the recovery of the environment and a sustainable future — but the best way is to do as little damage as possible.
At Banks Sadler, we’re passionate about supporting environmental causes and moving forward into a greener future. If you’re looking to arrange sustainable incentive travel, get in touch with our team today and discover how our services could help you achieve your environmental and business goals.