Trip.com announces green goals and sustainable operations

WORLDWIDE: Trip.com Group, a leading global travel service provider, has announced its long-term goal to build green tourism.

WORLDWIDE: Trip.com Group, a leading global travel service provider, has announced its long-term goal to build green tourism.

The company is working with travel partners to cover key areas across 10,000 products in the travel sector. 

This includes offsetting flights, zero waste camping, eco hiking and green hotels.

As part of the push for sustainable accommodation and travel, the corporate travel brand of the group, Trip.Biz, recently campaigned for “Green Hotels” and “Green Flights” in mainland China. 

Trip.Biz was awarded a Silver rating by EcoVadis, an internationally recognised corporate social responsibility (CSR) rating platform in 2022. 

Jane Sun, Trip.com Group CEO said: “We have always adhered to the vision of ‘pursuing the perfect trip for a better world’ and will work with our users and partners to further reduce carbon emissions in a more holistic and systematic manner. We still have a long way to go and much more to do.”

As part of the Group’s long-term commitment to improving sustainability awareness, Trip.com sent out a survey to its customers and asked them their thoughts on sustainable travel.

The 2022 Sustainable Travel Survey revealed that travelling sustainably is essential to most respondents. Barriers to sustainable travel were discussed, with respondents highlighting that the accessibility of sustainable travel products appears to be the biggest issue. Most respondents said that sustainable travel options aren’t clearly labelled, so they aren’t easily able to locate these options when choosing a travel product; and that sustainable travel options are lacking in general.

To keep up with its sustainability goals the Trip.com Group has adopted environmental initiatives, including building intelligent energy management systems, solar hot water systems, and renewable heating systems to reduce energy consumption. 

Its headquarters in Shanghai has been awarded LEED Gold certification. 

In 2021, Trip.com Group announced its ESG Committee and joined the UN Global Compact, committing to create a more sustainable future for tourism and society.

Booking.com also recently released findings from its Sustainability Report, which indicated the importance of staying sustainably for UK travellers.

Sharm El-Sheikh hotels aim for Green Star Hotel certificate ahead of COP27

EGYPT: Sharm El-Sheikh hotels are striving to be awarded Egypt’s Green Star Hotel certificate ahead of the country hosting COP27.

EGYPT: Sharm El-Sheikh hotels are striving to be awarded Egypt’s Green Star Hotel certificate ahead of the country hosting COP27.

The Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities said 22 properties have already got the sustainable hotel certificate and 48 have applied.

Sixteen more hotels are in the process of completing the steps needed before they can apply.

The Green Star Certificate is a national green certification and capacity-building program managed by the Egyptian Hotel Association (EHA) under the patronage of the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism. 

The GSH program offers an opportunity for hotels operating in Egypt to be internationally recognised for raising their environmental performance and social standards while reducing their operational costs. 

A team of certified local and international experts guide interested hotels through a sequence of training and information support sessions leading to field audits to ensure compliance with the program standards prior to granting the GSH certification.

The 27th Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Climate Change (COP27) will take place in November this year.

Image: Egypt.travel

Travelodge launches ‘inclusive, caring and conscious’ sustainability strategy

EUROPE: Travelodge is aiming to become a net-zero hotel operator as it launches its new sustainability strategy.

EUROPE: Travelodge is aiming to become a net-zero hotel operator as it launches its new sustainability strategy.

The hotel company, which operates nearly 600 hotels in the UK, Ireland and Spain, has launched its Better Future plan, which will be based around three pillars of being inclusive, caring and conscious.

Travelodge’s strategy is to become a “sustainable business with long term profitable growth,” using science-based targets and KPIs to reach its net-zero goal.

Jo Boydell, Travelodge’s chief executive said: “As one of the UK’s largest hotel brands, we have always been committed to doing business responsibly. However, we know that there is more we need to do and we believe that sustainability has a critically important role to play in shaping the future of Travelodge. The plan has been designed to mark a step-change in our sustainability agenda and is fully integrated with our wider business strategy and our purpose to provide affordable travel for everyone.” 

To help create its Better Future plan, Travelodge appointed Simply Sustainable, an award-winning global management consulting specialist in ESG and sustainable business.

During the last 12 months, the group consulted a wide range of stakeholders, which included landlords, investors, local authorities, developers, key suppliers and charity partners. Travelodge surveyed more than 40,000 of its business and leisure customers and their team of over 10,000 colleagues. It was this feedback that helped the group develop a plan.  

To enable the implementation of Better Future, Travelodge has created a new ESG model and steering committee. The group will also provide an annual sustainability report to see how close it is to achieving its targets.

As well as aiming to provide an accessible, inclusive and affordable place for both guests and staff, the company wants to tackle reducing energy through energy efficiency projects. It also said it would have sustainability as a key consideration when building new hotels.

Boydell added: “We have a long road ahead of us to complete our route to becoming a net-zero hotel operator and continue our journey to make sustainable, affordable travel for everyone a reality.” 

Image: Travelodge.

Hotelbeds commits to environmental strategy

WORLDWIDE: Hotelbeds, a global bedbank has put sustainable tourism at the centre of its ESG strategy.

WORLDWIDE: Hotelbeds, a global bedbank, has put sustainable tourism at the centre of its ESG strategy.

The Palma-based company has already achieved carbon neutral status for the last four years and has signed up to The Climate Pledge, which aims to achieve the goals in the Paris Agreement 10 years early.

Hotelbeds has also launched its Green Hotels programme and offers support for Ukraine with its Make Room 4 Ukraine initiative.

Chief executive Hotelbeds, Nicolas Huss said: “As one of the world’s leading travel technology companies, we have the opportunity to make tourism a force for good and contribute to creating a sustainable future. We are committed to supporting and developing green tourism and to continue to reduce the environmental impact of our daily operations and offices, while also supporting our partners to achieve their own ESG goals. 

This year Hotelbeds plans to launch a global reforestation project and a mentoring scheme for small scale or start-up businesses, particularly those with a focus on sustainable travel.

It also plans to introduce search filters identifying hotels that are committed to sustainability initiatives. Hotels which would come up on this search might have banned single use plastic or have electric charging points for vehicles.

Huss added: “Another important part of our strategy is to make sure we lead our ESG agenda from the front, ensuring our employees can contribute themselves to creating a stronger and healthier society as well as supporting local communities to thrive and progress.”

A recent booking.com survey suggested more than 50 per cent of UK travellers want to stay in sustainable accommodation when they travel.

Image: Pexels

Marie Claire UK Sustainability Awards recognise hospitality efforts

WORLDWIDE: Marie Claire’s UK Sustainable Hospitality Awards have recognised several hotel groups and independent hotels for their efforts in actively implementing change for sustainability.

WORLDWIDE: Marie Claire’s UK Sustainable Hospitality Awards have recognised several hotel groups and independent hotels for their efforts in actively implementing change for sustainability.

Global hospitality group Accor has won the Marie Claire Sustainability Award for Best Sustainable Hotel (global group) while London’s Room2 Chiswick has won for Best Sustainable Hotel (independent).

The awards, which are judged by an independent panel of industry and sustainability experts, celebrate the brands and organisations that are actively implementing change for a sustainable future.

Accor has a longstanding commitment to sustainability and in March last year it was the first major international hotel group to set out its long-term science-based targets to reduce carbon emissions in line with the 1.5°C ambition of the Paris Agreement. 

The global group also pledged to ban single-use plastic by the end of this year and achieve net zero emissions by 2050. It became the first international hotel group to commit to this.

Duncan O’Rourke, CEO Accor Northern Europe, commented on winning the award: “Sustainability impacts every element of the hospitality industry from how consumers and businesses perceive us, to how we attract, engage and retain employees, interact with the communities we operate in, and design our hotels and food and drink choices. Above all it is our corporate responsibility to act positively. This is why it is integrated into every part of our business. We’re delighted to receive this recognition and will continue to keep striving to do better and lead the industry on sustainability issues every day.”

Room2 Chiswick is the world’s first “whole-life net-zero ‘hometel’”, and its zero carbon footprint also recognises the embodied carbon used in its development, meaning that all carbon emissions associated with its creation from beginning to end, and now in its operation, have been taken into account to deliver its zero-carbon footprint.

Sani Resort won the Best Sustainable Holiday (with kids) Abroad. In 2020 the resort was the first certified carbon-neutral resort in Greece. Its location already attracts those interested in the environment as it is set in a 1,000-acre ecological reserve, with 7km of Blue-Flag beaches, 20km of forest trails, and 270 acres of wetlands.

Andrea Thompson, Marie Claire’s editor-in-chief and Sustainability Awards judge said: “What really makes Sani Resort stand out is its environment-focused activities for kids, which teach the next generation all about ecosystems, recycling and other ways they can protect the planet.”

The recognition for sustainable practices comes as Booking.com’s sustainability report found that more than half of UK travellers are looking to book sustainable accommodation on their travels.

Image courtesy of Accor Hotel Group.