How to reduce plastic to be an eco accommodation?
Travelers including business travelers are getting aware of their carbon footprint and are looking for sustainable options to make their trip eco-friendlier. Accommodation is one of the most important parts of their trip and they are searching for “eco lodge”, “eco hotel”, or “eco accommodation” more than before. So, working on sustainability is not an option for your business anymore. As a host, just saying “you care about environment and your service is sustainable” is not good enough. You need to be able to show what you do to make your place sustainable or eco-friendly since more people are getting educated about sustainability.
What travelers care about accommodation?
Even though 75 to 95% (depending on the platform) of people show greater interest in accommodation with eco-friendliness and sustainability, many of them don’t know what it means and how to achieve it. Most people want to make their trip sustainable as possible, but they are not willing to compromise convenience, safety, budget, and personalized experience. Make sure to include detail of what you offer, why you serve in the way (for sustainability reason), and what benefits are on your booking page. You want travelers to consciously evaluate your genuine efforts. The more they know, the more likely they will book a room.
The most important aspect for majority of travelers is Plastic-Free. While there are many other things you can do about sustainability in your business, plastic items (especially single-use) are the easiest your guests can spot. Although it is not realistically possible to be plastic free, it is necessary to reduce unnecessary plastic items, because people want plastic free travel.
You might have heard 4 R’s of waste management, reduce reuse recycle recover. The reason reducing and reusing are recommended more than recycling is only 9 to 14% of recyclable plastics actually get recycled. We hope we could recycle 100%, but this is still a long way to go. Reducing consumptions and reusing also reduce new items to be created in the first place. But keep in mind that your guests may not happy if you ask them to compromise what they want. And things like safety and reliable service should not be compromised.
What plastics can you refuse?
Can you imagine what will happen if we don’t have plastics anymore? Plastic bottles and bags are not only items we will not have, but also pretty much everything in our life. Clothes, shoes, containers, furniture, computers, cars, bed linens, and more… You will need computers for your business, personal protective equipment such as gloves and masks for cleaning. There are many more plastic items that are required for good reasons. Even single-use water bottles may be necessary if you are in a place where the quality of tap water is not good for drinking.
So, in a real world, “plastic-free travel” or “plastic-free hotel” is just not possible. When travelers say “plastic-free travel”, it means no unnecessary plastics. Parts of their shoes, a chair in a guest room, or refill water tank could be made with plastics, but they will not be disposed of during their trip and they are necessary.
To access what plastic items are not necessary, ask some questions:
- Is the item required to provide food, security, safety, hygiene, and other basic needs?
- Are there re-usable options available?
- Are there more sustainable materials for the same item?
- Do your guests need it?
- Can you change your operation so that the item is no longer required?
- How will your guests feel about the plastic item?
Here’re reduce reuse recycle recover repair (4 R’s) examples
- Provide a stainless steel or aluminum water bottle and coffee cup to refill instead of bottled water in a fridge. You can also place self-service refill water tank and coffee machine to reduce your time to service individual room.
- Provide re-usable non-plastic cleaning items such as bamboo cleaning cloth and coconut sponge. You will reduce the cost for disposable items in a long-term.
- Provide re-usable silicone food bags and wraps instead of clear wrap and disposable containers
- Get second-hand good quality furniture to add personal touch in each room instead of ordinal cheap furniture made of plastics.
- If your guests left unopened snacks or soft drinks, donate them to food bank
- Provide single-use solid toiletries instead of mini size bottled shampoo and conditioner. These hotel size toiletries are convenient, and many people find small solid bars are difficult to use. However, mini plastic bottles are the most unsustainable and unnecessary plastics. Single-use size tablets still provide ease of use and convenience for your cleaners compared to refill bulk pump bottles. Your guests can also enjoy having choices for different skin and hair types.
Contact us via email at email@example.com to request a free sample of Shower Balls if you provide accommodations.
Travelers’ Top Criteria for Choosing a Hotel - https://www.hospitalitynet.org/news/4080231.html
Booking.com reveals key findings from its 2019 sustainable travel report - https://globalnews.booking.com/bookingcom-reveals-key-findings-from-its-2019-sustainable-travel-report