As of January 1st 2023, any school arriving to a CAS Trips Destination via ground transport, will receive a donation of €20 per traveling student, which the school’s CAS department can use towards implementing their CAS Projects!
Encouraging responsible travel is a cornerstone of CAS Trips’ philosophy. In the wake of COVID-19 and the climate crisis, it is clear that many things must change, and the tourism industry is among them.
With fuel costs rising and airport staffing issues creating disruptions and chaos, there are many reasons to consider ground transport, especially within the European Union. This year, European train routes have continued to expand and directly service more CAS Trips destinations.
As such, we wanted to find a way to address the current situation while giving back to students and schools’ local community impact.
Read on to discover why we are committed to encouraging land travel and how you can make a difference through the method of transportation you choose.
The difference a train makes
As we work actively to reduce our emissions across all our operations, the fact that trains use 30% less energy than cars, and 20% less than planes (per passenger mile), cannot be ignored. We appreciate that throughout the world, train operators are constantly exploring ways to make traveling by train a highly sustainable transportation method. Overall, trains produce less noise, use less energy, and are much more sustainable, generating less CO2 emissions.
In promoting this transition toward long-term responsible forms of transport for domestic and international CAS Trips, it also felt natural to establish a link to our CAS Project Challenge—the foundation of which has always been to nurture positive impact by thinking globally and acting locally.
Our primary aim is to encourage responsible travel while supporting schools foster genuine community impact through CAS back home.
CAS Trips Founder Simon Armstrong explains the motivation behind our new train incentive, “We want to empower our students both while they travel with us, but especially once they return home. We understand that a successful project often requires more than just time investment, and we hope the fund will allow students to implement their projects with greater ease and impact. Our primary aim is to encourage responsible travel while supporting schools foster genuine community impact through CAS back home.”
Discovering the joy of slower travel
From surging fares and flight cancellations to lost luggage and airport chaos, air travel has been significantly impacted by the current fuel crisis and staffing shortages. A huge increase in gas and jet fuel prices has coincided with the vast array of travel disruptions wrought by the pandemic—when airlines switched gears to focus on survival. From staff layoffs and buyouts to selling planes and closing services, the industry scaled back significantly.
We believe that this situation points toward a new path forward for travel that is both sustainable and a pleasure to engage in. Beyond the sustainability factor, land travel offers many other benefits. In the spirit of enjoying both the journey and the destination, train and bus trips allow one to appreciate the diverse and beautiful landscapes and develop a deeper understanding of the surrounding area. In addition, most city train and bus stations are situated in the town center, meaning no transfers are necessary from airports. As a result, you can step off the train straight to your destination without contributing to the major traffic problems in most cities.
European Year of Rail
Last year also saw a considerable upturn in the fortunes of the overnight sleeper train in Europe. In December 2021, the European Union announced an Action Plan to boost long-distance and cross-border passenger rail services. This, combined with changes to the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) to increase high-speed rail capacity and new European Investment Bank (EIB) support for investment in rail, indicates that the EU is preparing the ground for a genuine renaissance in rail.
The plan is part of a package including measures for efficient and green mobility and is intended to help the EU meet its strategic milestones of doubling high-speed rail traffic by 2030 and tripling it by 2050.
Making the transition to more sustainable travel
Individuals and companies alike, many of us have taken time over the past two years to reflect on what travel means to us. Through this reflection, a new appreciation for its value has emerged, as well as a desire to do it more responsibly going forward.
We also understand that meaningful change takes time, and rewriting new habits is not always easy. Therefore, we have decided to offer this funding incentive for our land travelers to encourage the transition and allow more young people to discover the pleasure of scenic traveling. By donating 20 euros per student towards implementing their CAS projects, we hope to nurture a lifelong love of responsible travel while letting students know they can make a real impact through their CAS endeavors.
We are committed to staying at the forefront of any developments that can help us do what we already do even better — offer ethical, sustainable, and eye-opening travel adventures.
Ready to hop aboard? You can learn more about the destinations we visit here, discover our Close to Home program, or get in touch with our team to plan a customized trip for your students!