16 October 2007 ~ By Stephen Joyce ~ 4 Comments

Only One in Four Top Canadian Travel Sites Support Carbon Offsetting

Today is blog action day, a day when thousands of blogs from around the world, including this one, are posting articles about environmental sustainability. I first discovered this on Kevin May’s Travolution blog. On his post he compared the top five U.K. travel sites and reviewed their environmental policies. Of the top five, only one Easyjet has incorporated carbon offsetting directly into the checkout process. Of the remaining four, only one, Lastminute.com allows customers to offset carbon using a seperate carbon calculator.So, in keeping with Kevin’s analysis, I went online to discover what top Canadian travel companies are doing:

Expedia.ca
Absolutely no mention of a Sustainability Policy or Environmental Policy.

Escapes.ca
$1 from every booking goes to the World Wildlife Fund. The link is available right off the home page. Way to go.

FlightCentre.ca
Green Policy is available in the About Us section and a customers can offset carbon by using a carbon calculator provided by cleanerclimate.com.

iTravel2000.com
Nope, couldn’t find any green policy on this site either.

Redtag.ca
Again, no mention of carbon offsetting or a green policy.

Travelocity.ca
I couldn’t find any links to a green policy or mention of carbon offsetting.

Aircanada.com

I had to hunt around a bit but managed to find a Carbon Offset link in the About Aircanada section. They have a partnership with Zerofootprint. I’m not sure if there is a handy link during the booking process. If this is the only link, it is unlikely that anyone would find the carbon offset calculator.

Westjet.com
This one was a surprise for me. I expected Westjet to be taking a strong environmental stand, but I could not find any information about an environmental policy or carbon offsetting.

So the results are remarkably similar to Kevin’s. To be honest, I was expecting more Canadian companies to be on-board with support for environmental issues. Out of the eight sites that I reviewed, only one site, Escapes.ca, advertises their support for the environment on their home page and two, Flightcentre.ca and Aircanada.com provide links to a carbon offset calculator from their About Us sections. As it turns out, I know Sean Sutherland at Flightcentre and Sean Rollinson at Escapes and they are both very keen marketers, so it doesn’t surprise me that they are both on the ball. Great work guys!

4 Responses to “Only One in Four Top Canadian Travel Sites Support Carbon Offsetting”

  1. Stephen A. Joyce 16 October 2007 at 5:11 pm Permalink

    Quick update on FlightCentre.ca. Sean emailed me back and mentioned that there is a banner at the bottom of the homepage that promotes the carbon offsetting. Thanks Sean! Great to see a company with a Vancouver connection taking the lead.

  2. sean 16 October 2007 at 5:38 pm Permalink

    Thanks for the review Stephen, its something that’s really important to us, so we try to do as much as we can. Actually, we just signed up with Offsetters.ca and are now going to be giving $1 to them as well in addition to the $1 to WWF and placing a carbon offset option in the booking process (if Softvoyage can help us, you know how they are). I’ll probably be calling you guys about setting this up very soon. I’m also looking at another program called Boma Go Green where you work to make your office/building more environmentally sustainable, you should check it out… http://www.bomagogreen.com/

  3. Stephen A. Joyce 16 October 2007 at 5:53 pm Permalink

    I found a link on Offsetters.com (Thanks Sean) for WestJet.com. It would appear that if you book a flight through Offsetters.com Westjet.com affiliate link, then Offsetters.com will donate some or all of their commission to carbon neutral initiatives. Can anyone confirm if this is the case?

  4. Travolution Blogger 17 October 2007 at 8:28 am Permalink

    Good stuff with the anaylsis. When i have the time i will do the next five on the UK list.


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