After a year of almost no business travel for most companies, we’re finally starting to see the end of the Zoom-filled tunnel. Working from our kitchen tables has provided companies time to rethink how they do business, including how they can travel more sustainably.
And it’s about time too. For most companies, travel is a leading source of their emissions. And some have held themselves accountable for this too. A study by PwC estimated that business travel is their single biggest contributor to its carbon emissions, making up 53%.
One company working to educate and help businesses travel with the planet in mind is Goodwings, a Copenhagen-based hotel booking site that removes the CO₂ from every trip.
Travelling more sustainably has never been easier. Goodwings are offering Pleo users a 20% discount on all paid plans for the first year. And if you sign up before July 1st, you’ll get the rest of 2021 for free and a 20% discount all of 2022.
Goodwings removes emissions from your travels by calculating the total carbon footprint from your whole trip. Once calculated, they invest in verified reforestation projects so you’re travelling completely Net Zero.
We spoke to Christian Møller-Holst, Goodwings’ CEO and founder, to learn more about the company mission, how they remove carbon dioxide naturally and what it means to travel Net Zero.
Christian founded Goodwings in 2015 after having the motivation 20 years beforehand. “I was studying Philosophy and Business and was investigating the role business has in society, questioning what even is a business, really. Is it just about making money? Or is it about serving the needs of everyone on the planet?”
Fast forward to a few years ago, Christian decided to launch Goodwings after realising just how much money was being spent on advertising alone, versus how little was been invested into sustainable travel.
“I have no problem with spending money on advertising, we do it to some extent at Goodwings.
“But the fact our industry spends $45 billion every year on advertising makes me a little bit crazy because that money could have been spent on something that actually creates value.”
Goodwings works just like any other hotel booking site but instead uses climate action as a driving force. Listing over 1,000,000 hotels around the world, Goodwings calculates and removes the carbon emissions created on the spot using their Carbon Calculator.
“We try to spend as little money on advertising as possible by partnering with like-minded organizations like Pleo and TechSoup — these companies help us reach businesses who want to travel Net Zero. Instead, we use that money to calculate and remove emissions from our clients' travels by buying carbon credits from our third-party validated CO₂ removal project.”
As stated on Goodwings’ site, they use their booking revenues to finance reforestation projects to enable carbon to be removed from the atmosphere, mitigating carbon change.
There are two ways of removing CO₂ from the atmosphere: technologically or nature-based.
Goodwings removes carbon dioxide naturally — which is something that both the UN and EU encourage.
“One of the methods is tree planting. But it's not just about planting trees. Today, there are thousands of tree planting projects all over the world, but most of these projects are unverified — meaning there’s no guarantee the trees will ever be planted,” Christian says.
“To combat this, we only invest in verified reforestation projects. Meaning, there’s someone actively checking and evaluating the forests’ condition using drones, satellite images and soil samples to make sure the trees are actually absorbing the CO₂ from our clients’ travels.”
After working from home for over a year now, more and more companies are offering permanent remote positions for their employees — resulting in speculation around what the future of business travel will look like.
“While working from home has become the new normal, there’s no denying that working remotely does not have the same benefits for creativity and teamwork as being in an office does — we need to be together, that’s where the magic happens,” Christian says.
Adding to this, a recent Globetrender survey found that 76% of frequent flyers believe that being face-to-face with clients is better than video conferencing for sales meetings and pitches.
“I hope once restrictions ease worldwide, we’ll see less international same-day travel from London to Copenhagen, for example. I hope that when businesses need to travel — which will inevitably happen — they take responsibility for their emissions.”
“I believe the future of travel is green. Most people want to travel in a way that isn’t accelerating climate change at such a rapid pace — and we want to enable that change.”
Be part of the change. Claim your discount today and travel Net Zero.