“If we could start all over again in travel, and do things our way, what would we do differently?”
This was a question Dan and I often asked ourselves after a busy week of work and interstate travel, usually over a rosé. Prior to co-founding EnPerSo we had collectively been in the travel industry for thirty years, leading established brands for the past ten. The idea of creating a travel company from scratch had long appealed and we knew there was an opportunity to disrupt a stale industry. But more than that, we wanted to do business with purpose, to leave the world in a better place than we found it, and to bring likeminded individuals and companies along for the ride.
We made the leap in September 2019 and pledged to be the New Generation of Business Travel. From our first conversations we committed to put traveller safety, wellbeing and productivity at the forefront of our technology and service model. As two frequent travellers ourselves we knew how fun and powerful, but also exhausting and frustrating travelling for work could be and the battering regular trips took on our physical and mental health.
At the same time we couldn’t believe how hard it seemed to make informed, sustainable choices when booking travel; there was very little visibility over the environmental impact of travel at an individual or company level with no advice on how to reduce or offset emissions.
It was also important to give companies and travellers the opportunity to make positive contributions to the communities they worked in and travelled to. Whether this was through volunteering on trip, workplace giving or aligning carbon offsets to a local project, we wanted to use our expertise and technology to make this seamless.
Changing the narrative and making it easy to make a difference became key to our vision for EnPerSo. These three drivers are what collectively became known as the ‘EnPerSo Way’ and shaped our name – Environmental sustainability, Personal wellness and Social responsibility. And in 2021 not only do, we continue to live by these values, they have never been more relevant.
Our mission at EnPerSo is to make 1000 company’s travel programs carbon neutral by 2025. We operate our entire business as carbon neutral and are energised to work with our customers to help them make these steps when it comes to travel.
We are also proud to contribute 3% of all revenue to support organisations who’s projects reflect our values and are committed to positively impacting the environment, people and communities both at home and overseas. We give our employees regular days to volunteer and have a workplace giving scheme with WWF.
We partnered with SolarBuddy as their purpose is so closely aligned with ours at EnPerSo. 800m people are impacted globally by energy poverty. Solar lighting gives the power of education, allowing children to study after dark; health, by reducing air pollution; the economy, by minimising income spent on fuel; and the environment, with families then burning less fuel. Each solar light impacts the lives of five people and gives children the opportunity for a brighter future.
We donate solar lights with every new customer subscription and give our customers the opportunity to match our contribution. 160,000 people in remote communities in Australia have no access to electricity and we have set a goal to gift 1000 lights by the end of 2021, which will be used to illuminate communities both here and in Papua New Guinea.
So to answer our original question about what we’d do differently, this is what it looks like. Yes we have great technology, pricing etc, but what we proudest of is how we collaborate with partners and customers to create positive change. Travel wont be the same in 2021 and beyond but when you travel though EnPerSo, you can be confident that you are making an impact and that your people and the planet will be in a better place for it.
To find out more about SolarBuddy go to www.solarbuddy.org
To find out more about WWF go to www.wwf.org.au