Published on September 10th, 2008 | by Kendra Redman
Green Your Hotel Stay
Whether you’re on holiday or traveling for business, looking for ways to lighten the impact of your hotel stay is important.
Here are some quick “take action” tips and certified green hotel resources to guide you to a greener stay…
Quick Tips Checklist
Some ideas for greening your stay…
- Turn off the AC, heat, lights, tv, and radio when leaving the room.
- Use the hotel van instead of renting a car, or even better, use public transportation if you’re staying in an area that provides it.
- Take short showers and don’t request fresh towels and sheets each day.
- Participate in hotel recycling programs if the hotel offers one.
- If you have the option to check out electronically through the hotel TV, take advantage of this paperless system.
- Request that mini bottles of shampoo and soap not be replaced until they are empty. Some hotels even replace the soap every day with a new bar.
- If the hotel provides complimentary newspapers, pass yours on to someone else when you are finished or see if it can be recycled.
- Take advantage of hotel guest comment cards to suggest more energy efficient light bulbs, recycling programs, and an increase in energy efficient appliances such as toilets or mini bars.
If you’re willing to take some of these steps but prefer to find a facility that already has eco-initiatives in place, no sweat—certification programs exist, thought it’s a bit more complicated than that…
Some hotels have been specifically designed and built as a green property, while others are touted as ‘green’ but have nothing to show in the way of audited certification. Take the case of a hotel is marketed as “ultra green” because they recycle their trash, but are located in a sunny climate and do not take advantage of the location by using solar.
So how is a conscientious traveler supposed to know how ‘green’ a property really is? Here are some popular programs that provide ratings, guidelines, and databases of hotels that take the health of the planet and its people into account:
- Environmentally Friendly Hotels: Hotels worldwide, rated for eco-friendliness.
- “Green” Hotels Association: Eco-friendly hotels in the U.S. and worldwide.
- Green Lodge: Database of eco-friendly hotels in the U.S.
- Kimpton Hotels: A hotel network widely recognized for its EarthCare initiatives.
- Accommodation Services: Hotels and campsites throughout Europe.
ECOCLUB, the International Ecotourism Club: Ecolodges acround the globe
- Green Globe: A network that provides sustainability ratings for companies, communities, and the design/construction industry. Green Globe mainly certifies properties located in Australia, New Zealand, and Asia. Use the Network Search System to find rated hotels.