Travel site Hotwire.com has started selling carbon offsets to its customers. Through the program, Hotwire says that customers will only have to pay half of the cost that TerraPass typically charges because Hotwire will cover the other half.
Once Hotwire customers make a hotel, car rental, or flight booking, they will be given the option to purchase a carbon offset through TerraPass. The offsets, according to the press release, normally cost $12 for two weeks of a hotel stay, one week of driving, or one domestic flight, and $48 for an international flight. Since Hotwire will pay for half of every purchase, the final takeaway cost to the customer would be $6 (short trip listed above) and $24, respectively.
In 2006, Hotwire’s parent company Expedia partnered with TerraPass in a program that offered Flight TerraPasses to travelers when they bought plane tickets. (Erik Blachford, the former CEO of Expedia, now heads up TerraPass.)
Back then, the co-marketed Flight TerraPass came at three purchase levels: 1,000 lbs of CO2 for $5.99; 2,500 lbs of CO2 for $16.99; and 5,000 lbs of CO2 for $29.99, enough to balance about 2,200 miles; 6,500 miles; and 13,000 miles of flying, respectively.
Airports are getting into the act too – SFO announced a carbon offset plan last month.