Do you run a hotel? Are you concerned with environment issues? Do you want to make a change? To be a green hotel is challenging for many hoteliers, but it is also very important for our planet. We can help you make the first step with some ideas.
A polluting industry
According to the United Nations, the hotel industry is responsible for 1% of global emissions. It has become so easy to jump on a flight, cross the border, or explore an entire country. People all around the world are traveling more than ever and the future of tourism is looking good. This is excellent news for professionals, but not so much for the planet.
Since the demand will not slow down, it is essential to implement some measures to reduce the global emissions, caused by the hotel industry. If all hotels, hostels, or resorts would be willing to make a change, this would have a significant impact. Transforming your hotel into a sustainable hotel as much as possible is absolutely necessary.
Trends to follow to become a green hotel
There are infinite measures you can introduce to become a responsible hotel. You have to choose those that will fit best with your needs and your resources. However, let’s dive into 5 main trends and a few examples of how to be a more sustainable hotel.
1) Stop food waste
Food waste is a major issue in western countries. Apart from being a loss of money, it might be frowned upon by guests. Adjust your purchases as much as possible to minimize food waste. If at the end of the day there is leftover food nevertheless, you could think of starting to collaborate with apps such as Too Good To Go. This will enable local consumers to pick it up for a fair price.
2) Limit water usage
Water is a scarce resource, which makes preserving it all the more important. Even if the majority of your guests are already sensitive to this issue, it is always a good idea to raise their awareness even more. Do not hesitate to communicate good practices for limiting water usage as much as possible. You can also decide to install filters in the sink or shower tap, or have your toilets checked to minimize any leakages.
3) Reduce plastic
No need to explain how much damage plastic does to the environment. It is a kind of tradition for hotels to offer single-use products to their guests. No matter how useful to your guests, all these items add significantly to the amount of plastic consumed per year. Instead, you may want to adopt measures such as installing soap and shampoo dispensers in the shower. You could also try and eliminate plastic bottles in mini bars, or at the breakfast buffet.
4) Manage energy
Reducing energy consumption is good for the planet, but also your budget. When it comes to water, raise your guests’ awareness and help them reduce their own consumption in your hotel. You may also want to consider offering your guests the possibility to use a kettle or a mini bar in a common room, instead of their own rooms. People will use them less if they are not made available in their rooms. Another idea might be to change all your light bulbs to LED.
5) Improve hotel architecture
Small measures will help your hotel go green, but taking on bigger projects, such as improving the architecture, will deliver significant results and save more money. There are several ways in which you may want to improve architecture. One could be installing solar panels on your roof and producing your own energy, especially if your location permits it. Another measure you might want to consider is using only eco-friendly materials in the construction or renovations of your amenities.
All these trends will help you in going green, but you do not have to adopt them all. Factors that will need to be taken into consideration when choosing the best measures are your available resources (e.g. money, time, staff).
Benefits of being a responsible hotel
To be a green hotel is essential when it comes to protecting the planet and contributing to a better life for all of us. However, this is not the only benefit that the hospitality establishments will obtain.
1) Improve your image
Companies that are not environmentally responsible, are not perceived very well in the era we live in. This is not just the case in the hospitality industry, but also any other industry. Adopting measures to save water or energy and to communicate its benefits could prove to be a great way of improving your image.
2) Attract more clients
Guests from all around the globe are very concerned with environment issues, especially younger generations. Eco-friendly is a real criterion for many of them when they are choosing a place to stay for the holidays or weekends. Becoming green is a great opportunity to attract more clients and ensure none are lost.
3) Increase revenue
Millennials have become one of the most interesting target audiences for hotels. This group will more likely be willing to pay more to stay in hotels that are taking an active part in protecting the planet. So you can decide to adjust your prices, as well as your communication and lead them straight to your door.
To be a green hotel will not only help protect the planet, but it will also attract more clients. However, you will have to keep in mind that it is not a short-term project, but something you will have to maintain throughout the years.