Eco hotels are trending: Hotels generally are not generously disposed to eco or green living. The carbon footprint from the laundry washing alone can be eyebrow-raising. And yet, going green, while it has its challenges service-wise, is trending big-time among discerning hotel guests.
As we are continually reminded, the arctic glaciers are getting smaller and our planet is infested with waste and plastic. Less is most definitely more these days. So here are five ways you can make your property instantly more eco-friendly – and trendy too.
Save on energy
Small and large changes are required here – and they will make a big difference when it comes to your energy expenditure. Lightbulbs are a huge source of waste – both in energy and actual matter being thrown away. Swap to LED bulbs. The power to light them is halved and they last five times as long as traditional bulbs. A win-win. Compost your waste where possible. Kitchens generate oh so much waste, which can be used to boost or even create your eco herb garden etc. Simply make a point of chucking all the bio scraps into the composter. If you have a swimming pool, consider a solar panel heating system. They are expensive to install, but after that initial costing, you’ll really notice the difference on the bills.
Cut down on single-use disposables
Just recently, hotels in California adopted a ‘no mini toiletries’ policy. They did this to cut down on excess plastic usage, waste and production. Consider supplying refillable shampoo, conditioner, soap and lotion dispensers as part of the ‘go green’ plan. You can ditch the travel toothpaste and toothbrush packets too as generally speaking, guests always bring their own. If they don’t, there can be the option to order them additionally from reception. But the point here is, they should not be offered as standard in every room as it’s habit for guests to take them, even if they are not needed. And of course, where possible, swap plastic for paper or glass.
Use local produce
Your community will absolutely love the fact that you are supporting their businesses – and they will, in turn, recommend you or use your hotel when rooms are required. Using local produce cuts down on transport, shipping and freight pollution, and you can usually get great discounts on organic products and food too.
Cut down on laundry
Leave a note in your rooms explaining that you are an eco property, and as such, you leave it up to the guest’s discretion as to whether the sheets and towels must be changed daily. Most guests staying two to three nights will be perfectly happy to have their towel dried on the heated rails and their beds remade with the same sheets to save on energy. You can also swap your laundry and dishwashing equipment to eco-friendly machines which use less water and energy. This is an initial expense that will pay for itself in the long term.
Use eco-friendly products
Make sure your staff use eco-friendly cleaning products to maintain your property. That ensures less chemicals. Guests can also appreciate the fact that you are making a concerted effort to cut down on harmful chemicals in their environment. Eco-friendly products are particularly popular among guests who like their pets to be included in their hotel stay plans.
Finally, make sure you let everyone you know, that you are making the effort to save energy and be green. Tweet, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn and share the heck out of your eco-activity. Make sure you add this element to your website too. Guests with a social conscience are much more likely to become repeat customers if your values are aligned with theirs. And remember, while being eco-friendly is a good way to market your business, it’s also great for the environment too. It really is a win win strategy that will save you money and boost your business too.
Just recently, The Green House in Bournemouth took seventh place as one of the most eco-friendly hotels in the world. Look at their strategies for more inspiration and improvements.