To fly or not to fly? Why sustainability matters in a post-COVID world

Photo showing passports, a toy aeroplane and the COVID-19 virus

The worldwide unrest caused by the COVID-19 virus has sent shockwaves around the globe – a rippling, and at this point, ongoing, transformation of the status quo in personal and professional routines.

In doing so, it has forced upon us numerous experiments that may have long-term impacts, potentially most profoundly on the travel industry.

In every corner of the world, companies and individuals are figuring out how to maintain workflow in the absence of face-to-face interactions. Cities and countries are discovering the benefits of a drastic reduction in industrial activity, auto emissions, flights and tourism on air quality. And companies are wrestling with how to cut costs as anticipated revenue disappears.

On Friday, Shashank Nigam, founder and CEO of aviation marketing consulting firm SimpliFlying, posed a simple question on LinkedIn: Did we NEED to fly so much after all?

It’s a question Nigam says he is struggling with as he sits under lockdown in Mumbai, staying with family until the situation eases and he can return to his home of Toronto. For the past decade, Nigam says he has made about 55 to 75 flights every year, clocking 200,000 to 300,000 kilometers annually.

“Most of us in the developed world are used to flying at the drop of a hat. When a client asks us to, or for a holiday. It’s so affordable to fly; it’s so common to fly. You just don’t question it at all,” he says.

But the coronavirus has given Nigam time to question it.

This is an excerpt from an article by Mitra Sorrells, originally published on PhocusWire.

Travindy is an independent website featuring news and opinion on all issues to do with tourism and sustainability. Written primarily for an industry audience, our aim is to support the transformation of the sector into one that is regenerative, restorative and fully inclusive.

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