Sustainable Hotel Practices: Going Green in the Hospitality Industry

Hotel Sustainability Tips to Help You Run an Eco-Friendly Accommodation

What is a recurring issue that hoteliers have, and will continue to face in the future? Hotel sustainability – the impact your property has on the environment.

Sustainability in the Hospitality Industry – What Is It?

Sustainability is a widely known topic and issue that business owners from all industries must take into consideration. In its entirety, it takes into account all of the elements of a business that have the potential to impact future generations.

In simple terms, sustainable hotel practices consider and benefit current generations (guests), without causing detrimental impacts to future generations.

This means that hoteliers must consider what eco-friendly hotel practices they can implement to be sustainable. This includes things such as energy efficiency, water consumption, waste, and so on.

Going Deeper into Hotel Sustainability

Hotel sustainability is not limited to just energy efficiency, water conservation, and waste management.  It encompasses a broader spectrum of practices that hotels can adopt to reduce their environmental footprint and promote sustainability.

For instance, hotels can opt for locally sourced food for their restaurants, reducing food miles and supporting local businesses. Sustainable procurement is another area – from furnishings to toiletries, hotels can choose products that are ethically sourced and have a lower environmental impact. Moreover, hotels can also contribute by engaging in community outreach and supporting local conservation efforts.

In essence, hotel sustainability is a holistic approach that considers every aspect of the hotel’s operations, striving to lessen its impact on the environment while providing a high-quality experience for guests.

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Hotel Sustainability as a Trend – Why Is It Leading?

It’s no secret that sustainability is on the rise in a number of industries. As an accommodation business, your property must consume a lot of water and energy to provide showers, spa facilities, electricity and so on.

The larger the property, the more guests you have, hence the more energy you consume. As a hotelier, it is your responsibility to minimise your environmental impact, henceforth preserving experiences for future generations.

As the world becomes more environmentally conscious, guests are actively seeking out accommodations that prioritise sustainability. In fact, a study by Booking.com showed that 87% of global travellers would prefer to stay in an eco-friendly accommodation.

By implementing sustainable practices and promoting them to potential guests, hotels can tap into this growing trend and appeal to a wider audience.

Best Environmental Practices for the Hotel Industry

So how can hotels be more sustainable? Let’s see:

When it comes to sustainability in the hospitality industry, there are a variety of sustainable hotel practices you can try. Small or large, every effort counts.

Be More Energy Efficient

One of the first things you want to consider when going green in the hospitality industry is how much energy your business uses. Then, you need to think about how you can reduce this.

  • Choose energy-efficient appliances
  • Try solar-powered technology
  • Use smart systems like HVAC
  • Encourage guests to save power

Reduce Water Consumption

Overuse of water is one of the most common impacts hotels have on the environment. Consider how you can reduce water consumption and be a more eco-friendly hotel in this regard.

  • Monitor water lines
  • Choose eco-friendly sources
  • Use less where possible (e.g. sprinklers)
  • Encourage guests to save water
  • Choose water-efficient appliances

Recycle And Reduce Waste

It may seem obvious, but when considering ‘what can hotels do to be more sustainable’, recycling and waste management is a crucial aspect. As a hotel, it is your responsibility to have a strict recycling regime.

  • Have both rubbish and recycling bins in common areas and hotel rooms
  • Encourage guests to reduce waste
  • Offer refillable water bottles
  • Use biodegradable materials (e.g. food packaging)
  • Donate unused goods (e.g. furniture, food, etc.)

Source Organic Resources

Something else you can do to reduce your environmental footprint and increase positivity for future generations is sourcing organically. It isn’t just your environmental footprint to consider, it is also that of those you source resources from.

  • Choose organic food and drink sources
  • Purchase products from sustainable businesses
  • Minimise the use of chemicals
  • Use eco-friendly hotel cleaning products
  • Source organic bedding and recycled furniture

Go Paperless

Many hotels (and businesses in general) produce a lot of unnecessary waste with printing and bookkeeping on paper. To be a more eco-friendly hotel, you need to implement smart technology and keep everything electronic.

Encourage Sustainable Transportation

Promoting the use of sustainable transportation among guests can greatly contribute to your hotel’s green practices.

  • Provide bicycles for guest use
  • Encourage guests to use public transportation
  • Offer shuttle services to common destinations
  • Provide information about local walking and biking trails

Implement a Green Education Program for Staff

Educating your staff about the importance and benefits of sustainability can improve your hotel’s overall green performance.

  • Offer regular training on sustainable practices
  • Encourage staff to come up with green ideas
  • Reward employees for environmentally friendly behavior

Collaborate with Green Organizations

A partnership with a local or international green organization can boost your hotel’s credibility and commitment to being eco-friendly.

  • Sponsor local environmental events
  • Join international sustainability certification programs
  • Collaborate with NGOs for beach cleanup, tree plantation, etc.

Establish a Green Marketing Strategy

Ensure that your sustainable efforts are communicated effectively to your potential guests.

  • Highlight your green practices on your website and social media
  • Use ecolabels and certifications in your marketing materials
  • Share stories of your sustainability initiatives with your audience.

Hotel Sustainability: It’s More Than a Trend

Improving sustainability in the hospitality industry today will benefit tomorrow.

As defined earlier; sustainability is the concept of serving current generations, at the same time as maintaining preservation for future generations.

Today, your guests are enjoying lengthy showers and luxurious spa and pool facilities. Tomorrow, your guests cannot visit because there is a water shortage.

When it comes to implementing sustainable hotel practices, every little bit counts. The consideration of energy efficient options, the implementation of paperless tools and the sourcing of organic resources – everything you do today, will benefit tomorrow.

Hotel Sustainability Is More Than a Trend – It Is a Responsibility

If an individual can help save the environment, as a hotel enterprise, so can you.

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About the author

Preno's Content Marketer, Alix Dougherty, is educated in the Tourism field, so seeks to apply this knowledge to content that guides and inspires hoteliers. She is a passionate writer who enjoys creating content.

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