Back in 1981, Jo Sanders and a group of 14 other trekkers huddled in a tent about 16,500 feet above sea level on the Tibetan side of Mount Everest. They were the first American group of backpackers ever permitted to trek in the Tibetan backcountry, and it was here that Jo became convinced to start her own adventure company specializing in bringing conservation travel to the world’s most remote destinations. Since 1981, Geographic Expeditions (GeoEx) has evolved far beyond the Himalaya, and delivers lovingly crafted and smartly run trips - from treks and safaris to cultural tours, and rail journeys to all seven continents.
The pioneering luxury adventure travel company has over 40 years of experience harnessing the transformative power of travel for positive impact and directing funding for local livelihoods and wildlife nature conservation efforts. In western Honshu Japan, GeoEx traveler dollars directly support local fisherman, chefs and artisans who inhabit the historical castle towns of Hagi and Tsuwano. In the Galapagos, a portion of GeoEx traveler spending helps fund critical conservation projects through partners like the Charles Darwin Foundation, WildAid and See Shepherd. In Namibia GeoEx travelers stay at the camp with the lowest environmental footprint in the country and participate in Black Rhino tracking and Save the Rhino Trust. No matter the destination, GeoEx ensures enrichment of the lives of their travelers, the destination and the environment.
“From the outset, sustainability is woven into the fabric of the GeoEx experience. Our pre- departure initiatives, such as curated gift boxes supporting social enterprises and a digital itinerary app to minimize paper usage, exemplify our dedication to responsible travel practices. We meticulously select accommodations and partners who share our values, fostering relationships with entities that prioritize sustainability, innovation, and carbon neutrality.” Says Shant Abdo, director of marketing at GeoEx. Alongside their Tomorrow’s Air partnership, individual traveler donations are facilitated by The GeoEx Foundation, a carefully vetted list of conservation organizations, where guests can also choose to support the communities, wildlife, and ecosystems that made their trip so special.
What sets GeoEx apart, is that their Environmental Policy goes beyond the trip. Back home in San Francisco, GeoEx is a California Green Business, a member of The Conscious Travel Foundation, and their office is also located in a sustainable workspace called Tides Converge. Shant Abdo highlights, “employee education is paramount. The GeoEx team is well-versed in climate topics such as resource conservation, pollution prevention and now: the climate innovations offered in the Tomorrow’s Air portfolio such as direct air capture, biochar, enhanced rock weathering and sustainable aviation fuel."
The training and communications support Tomorrow’s Air provides was transformative when deciding to add Tomorrow’s Air into the GeoEx sustainability strategy. “Amongst the many companies that are doing great work, Tomorrow’s Air stood out in a large part because of their educational efforts that supplement their efforts on the ground. Educating the masses is a major component in sustaining our planet and it played an integral role in how we chose Tomorrow’s Air as our partner,” said Shant Adbo.
In 2022 GeoEx joined Tomorrow’s Air, offering guests the option to make a contribution to Tomorrow’s Air in the amount of $40 in lieu of a pre-departure gift. In 2022 and 2023, the fee covered the removal and permanent storage of 40 kg of carbon dioxide. For 2024 GeoEx increased their commitment to include carbon removal in the amount of 20kgs per guest and emissions reductions via sustainable aviation fuel in the amount of 17 kgs per guest. As of December 2023, GeoEx has funded the removal and permanent storage of 11 tons of carbon dioxide. Tomorrow’s Air is proud to facilitate GeoEx’s commitment to informed exploration, join them on our collective journey towards a sustainable future.
Learn more about Geographic Expeditions approach to conservation travel.