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First, we went carbon neutral. Next? It’s the big one: we’re aiming for Net Zero emissions by 2050. Here’s how we plan to get there.
The big five on safari. Pristine coastlines. The rhythms of a rainforest, awash with wildlife… At Contiki, we want you to experience all the life-changing benefits that come with exploring the world. Travel is a gift we want to share with the 18-35s of today, and future generations too.
But unprecedented things are happening to our planet – the impacts of climate change are universal, and ignoring the situation won’t make it go away.
We wanted to take action so, in 2022, we made all of our trips carbon neutral. But the science has spoken since then, and offsetting just ain’t enough.
So without further ado, together with our parent company The Travel Corporation, we’re happy to announce our four-point Climate Action Plan. Validated by the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi) – the emissions reduction specialists who take ‘legit’ to a whole new level – we’ve outlined a set of short-term and long-term targets, with one simple end goal: to reach Net Zero GHG emissions across the whole of our business by 2050. AKA zero, zilch, nada.
The Short-term Targets (2030)
The Long-term Target (2050)
In a nutshell, science-based targets help us make sure we’re doing the right things, doing enough of the right things, and that we’re, you know, actually DOING the right things.
Aligning with the scale of reductions required to keep global temperature increases below 1.5 degrees, these targets are verified by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) – the hallmark of reliability when it comes to reducing carbon emissions. In 2022, our parent company The Travel Corporation became the first tour company to operate with validated science-based Net Zero targets in tow.
Reducing your emissions while you travel
Wanna help? We knew you would (and that’s why we love you.) Here’s how you can reduce your carbon footprint on the road:
Frequently Asked Questions
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How does travel contribute to climate change?
Whenever we start a car or jump onto an airplane, we emit harmful emissions into the air, known as greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs). GHGs are caused in part by the burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil and natural gas) to keep our gas tanks full and our fossil-fuel based transportation system moving. GHGs trap heat from the sun within our atmosphere and the more GHGs that we emit into the atmosphere, the more heat is trapped – warming our planet.
What is a carbon footprint?
A carbon footprint encompasses the total amount of carbon that was emitted into the atmosphere to provide a product or service.
How did you calculate the carbon footprint from my trip?
Contiki worked with a third-party consultant to measure the carbon footprint of our trips. Here’s what we considered in scope:
- Transfers: any transportation provided as part of the trip
- Meals: any included meals as part of the trip
- Accommodations: all accommodations included within the trip.
We took a regional approach to measuring these emissions, to ensure country and regional specific emission factors were used where possible. We will review and update the carbon footprint of our trips every three years using our custom trip emission calculator.
Here’s what we considered out of scope and will not be included as part of our trip carbon footprint
- Traveller’s air travel to and from the destination
- All pre and post services not included in the price of the trip
- Emissions produced by facilities or buildings we visit on our trips (ie. museums). These emissions are considered the responsibility of the facility as determined by internationally accepted principles for emissions accounting.
- Meals purchased by the traveller
What else is Contiki doing to reduce the carbon footprint of its trips?
We’re taking several steps to reduce the carbon footprint of our trips:
We’re implementing food waste management systems at our special stays, Gasthof and the Chateau to measure and reduce our food waste.
What are science based targets?
Science based targets are ambitious carbon reduction targets approved by the Science Based Target initiative. They ensure businesses reduce their emissions to limit the global temperature increase to no more than 1.5°C (essential to avoid catastrophic impacts of climate change). Contiki is working at an industry level through the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) to create roadmaps for setting science-based targets. From there we can evaluate when and how to set science-based targets.
Why did you stop carbon offsetting?
In 2022, when we set our science-based targets we aligned ourselves with the Net-Zero Standard which focuses on emission reductions through direct action within our own business and supply chain. This prompted us to establish a dedicated carbon fund to finance our low-carbon transition. This means that rather than offsetting the emissions we might produce, we are investing in emissions reductions across our business.
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