Written by: Stefan Eng, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
A few weeks ago created a poll and published it in my group in Linkedin. The groups consists of +48 000 Travel Professionals from all over the world. There was one single question and four alternatives to choose from as a response. I must say that the answers I’ve got back surprised me. Obviously, it was not a scientific poll in any way. However, it gave me and You an indication on how we are thinking and acting around travel. And it scares me!
The question raised was;
“Honestly, when making your reservations, how often are your choices based on environmentally friendly factors?”
The available responses that the audience could choose from was quite straight forward and the following;
b. Looking but not vital
c. Looking and vital
d. Vital and decisive to go
Let us stop there for a second! Moment of truth - Ask yourself, what would your response have been?
Let me first be honest to you all and say that I answered “Never” and so did another 57 % of the respondents. “Looking but not vital” was the choice made by 25 % which in the end means that 82% of us does not care at all or care just a little but with no proactive action made.
There is something around climate change on the news almost everyday nowadays. And especially over the last couple of months. Serious and fatal flooding is reported from central Europe and China, Enormous fires in US and especially Oregon. (Everyone is already used to see the reports of fire in Australia each year – and the Flooding in Bangladesh.) But news media referring to the latest climate report released by United Nations a couple of days ago. Scary reading as one of the Secretary General, António Guterres, statements is ”Code red for humanity”.
It seems like the governments around the globe are stuck in bureaucracy and very little actions are being made to achieve the goals of CO2 Emissions set up in climate meetings in both Paris and London. And it just takes too long time.
Perhaps we need a new French Revolution – peaceful but still a revolution. That starts with You and Me changing behavior when planning and projecting our travels. Take the responsibility we should have taken years ago. And start looking for alternatives that actually makes a different. But also in starting to raise CO2 requirements, to travel with certain airlines, stay at certain hotels and other travel related services.
Don’t get me wrong here, I am totally in favor of travel and In all forms. When experiencing the world, with is variations in people, culture, languages, food etc. we are all becoming richer as a human beings. However, as we are now in ”Code Red” for our species and we have to be proactive in how we think and behave.
So what can we do, You and I?
Let’s look at a few things that we can do; If you think it’s silly, then I recommend you to talk to someone who lived in Paradise in the US before the fire burnt the village to the grounds. Scroll down to see an interactive map of the fire behaviour in Paradise and its surroundings.
The Journey - Obvious to all, but still
Travel by Rail if you can Or in fact a car could be better if many passengers are travelling together
If you need to fly: Pick the Aircraft with the lowest CO2 Emission. How can you know which one it is? You are probably very used to Google a lot for other information. Spend some time to do the same finding the best alternative for the climate too.
Don’t buy anything onboard This way you make a statement that it is totally unnecessary for the Airlines to bring anything to sell. Ask them to open a specific store at the airports instead. Push your government to open for “Tax-Free” shopping for travellers coming back home.Some countries, like Norway have this already since many many years. You and I will probably bring souvenirs anyway.
The Stay - Maybee it is time to look for hotels with a feature list reflecting their view on environment! No TV Do you really need a television? Hotel should upgrade their WIFI to highest standards in speed, allowance and security.
No Minibar? Why not take a walk to the nearest store. The variation and price is of course much better.
No AC Is air-condition really valid in all locations? And if it is, Make sure they have a limitation in usage. Hotel should never give out two Card Keys - One of them is many times left back in the room to keep the AC going. No Pool. Would it not be enough with a shower instead? Hotel Restaurants with local kitchen only Nothing should be transported longer than from the nearest city. So it’s about time you try something new
Escalators only for disabled persons You probably need the training using the stairs anyway
I am sure that the above and other measures will be seen in reality in the future. The questions is how far away this future is?
We have a long way to go – So it’s about time we start walking.
The climate and many other topics will be addressed in the new site travellersvoice.net where You and Your fellow travellers for instance can raise or answer questions. Or participate in discussions and polls. And more
Stefan Eng, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Stefan Eng has almost 40 years of experience working for Airlines, GDS's, Travel Agents, Tour Operators and Airline IT Companies in the global travel industry.
Already in 2008, Stefan founded the Travel Employees Networking Group in Linkedin. The group is now a relevant and strong platform to collaborate and discuss travel trends. In addition, members can find open positions or search for new candidates. At present, the group has more than 48 000 members.
To support the group, Stefan established in early 2020 the site www.travelemployees.com, an Online Magazine & Job Listing Portal for Travel Professionals. The audience can find articles, surveys and Jobs listed by Travel Companies and recruiters from around the globe. Guest Authors are also welcome as well as the opportunities to advertise for (or find) the world's greatest travel products and services.
During late spring 2021 Stefan initiated the first steps to create a forum and community for Travel Enthusiasts, www.travellersvoice.net. The site aims to open a dialog between travel experts and traveller enthusiasts of all kinds. One of the most important questions that will be raised and discussed within the site and in Club House app is how we all can continue travel, explore and discover - Which is in our nature - and do this with responsibility for our environment.
Travel Employees Networking Group's Online Magazine Travelemployees.com has been elected to be "One of the best Online Travel Magazines on the Planet" by Feedspot.