Should UN staff be allowed to travel business class?


Yes if they are old , have some health issues or undertaking long travels!

However at large a UN staff must show the world that they are perfect examples of the values for which UN stands for including the "Green UN" initiatives which believes in sustainable growth and development !

Frequent and Long-distance travels are very heavily impacting health, well being, personal life and ultimately work performance of travelers. There should be some cut-off point: for a short travels (and in spirit of saving monies) I would recommend economy class but for a long-distance travels (i.e. flight over 8hrs or so) travelers should be allowed to use a more comfortable way of travel to enable reasonable travel conditions. Cost savings using economy class is only an illusion. In my organization (non-UN) we are loosing many man-days on our employee’s recovery time after hard-long business trips. This consequently results in much higher operational costs.

For long trips, its alwaus good to fly on business class.

I dont know which is a Greener practice, but one option to reduce the CO emissions related to Businness travel and a more cost efficient practice could be to pay one extra night of DSA instead of flying Business class.

Another way the UN could be greener related to travel is by improving the planning process, example: Travel plans, defining mission purposes, know what other HR resources you have available in country.

Also the UN at all levels and in all agencies should promote the use of the IT software and hardware available. So staff know about the advantages this option gives you, and when possible, instead of flying participate via Video conference.

Fully support the recommendation to induce staff to travel economy with the provision of a rest day and payment of DSA. Not only does this reduce carbon impact, but also saves substantial costs to the organization at a time of world economic crisis. We can not accept business as usual.