How to Tell if Your Hotel is Actually Eco-Friendly

green travel

Think it’s easy to tell how earth-friendly your accommodations are? Some highly visible features may not mean much, while what you don’t notice can be a game changer. Properties with sustainability programs usually provide details on their websites. A hotel’s green efforts may also be on its TripAdvisor listing page. Or, you can e-mail the hotel and ask. This is how some practices break down.

Looks Really Green

Solar panels. It takes a large array to generate enough energy to power a property. A couple of panels won’t do much.

Rooftop gardens. They insulate buildings and cut down on storm-water runoff. But most aren’t big enough to make an impact.

In-room recycling bins. It’s better to recycle than landfill. However, guests generate a small percentage of hotel waste.

Saltwater swimming pool. Such pools need less chlorine than the traditional kind, but they’re not chemical-free.

Is Really Green

Reflective film on windows. It’s not sexy, but screening out sunlight can cut energy use by 25 percent.

Leaving land undeveloped. Lawns, golf courses, and flower borders require huge amounts of water and chemicals

Careful construction. AccorHotels found that its biggest source of waste was building and renovations.

Fixing leaks. According to the EPA, leaks can take up more than 6 percent of a commercial building’s water usage

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