You may be surprised to hear that green tourism is becoming very popular these days. The Center for Responsible Travel notes that green tourism grew by 7% in 2017 alone.
Creating Sustainable Homes Out of Rental Properties
Vacations don’t have to be a time of waste and excess. Eco-friendly homes are in high demand among travelers. These features provide peace of mind that they’re not increasing their carbon footprint while still having a memorable vacation.
Architectural Digest has a list of a number of great eco-friendly properties for inspiration. You may want to look at them if you want to make your own green home for tourists.
Having environmentally-friendly practices incorporated into your vacation rental amenities can work to your advantage. It is not prohibitively expensive to transform your short-term rental property into something more environmentally conscious. Planning for green practices in your vacation rental business is good for the environment, your guests, and your revenue.
Here are different ways to add environmentally conscious vacation rental amenities to your property.
Energy-efficient lighting and appliances
One way to reduce a home’s carbon footprint is to furnish its hardware and appliances with energy-saving instruments. These changes can make the home more energy-efficient, which will save you money on utility costs.
An easy way to start is with changing to LED light bulbs. Another option is to add an automated thermostat to your heating and cooling system to adjust the temperature when the guests are not occupying the rental. They can easily meet 94% of your energy needs.
Installing solar panels is another way to reduce costs. In warmer climates, it’s more common to use solar to heat pools. But as the solar installation costs become more affordable, more residential properties are installing solar panels for energy generation. Solar panels help reduce energy bills at all times of the year. Some local energy providers will buy back any excess generated solar power.
Reducing power shouldn’t be your only focus. You can reduce water waste with low-flow showerheads and water fixtures. As you update the rental, look for appliances with the Energy Star rating or water-saving features to be more environmentally conscious.
Eco-friendly product choices
The hospitality industry has realized that single-use toiletry products are harmful and expensive vacation rental amenities. Their purchase reduces revenue, plus their production and discard harms the environment. Many travelers prefer to bring their own products anyway. It’s unnecessarily to constantly stock shampoo, conditioner, and lotion when the guests can provide their own or run to a store as needed.
Instead, offer refillable soap containers. Not only will they look more attractive in your kitchens and bathrooms, but it’s environmentally friendly to buy in bulk.
Do add vacation rental amenities made from recyclable materials, such as toilet paper and paper towels. Find a cleaning company that uses eco-friendly cleaning products. Eco-conscious travelers appreciate knowing their vacation rental is cleaned without harmful chemicals.
Ditch the plastic, go reusable
Help your guests reduce their plastic use by providing them with reusable options like shopping bags. Leave a supply of cloth shopping bags so that they don’t need to bring plastic bags back from the store.
Another environmentally friendly option is to leave behind reusable water bottles. Let them refill from your water filter for the tap and help guests avoid buying plastic bottled water.
Be environmentally conscious about how you tackle trash. Standard trash bags don’t decompose. They do make compostable trash bags; supply the vacation rental with these instead.
Make it easy for your vacation rental guests to make smart choices about their trash. Have an accessible recycling bin separate from standard trash. Not all cities offer single-stream recycling, so if the guests need to sort their recyclables, make clear what can go in the bins.
Food waste represents a large amount of trash. If your vacation rental has a garden, why not add composting? This is sure to impress your environmentally-conscious guests.
Another option is to give the guests the choice to donate their unused food to a food bank. Some vacation rental associations provide a shopping bag where guests can deposit unopened items for donations.
Help your guests be more environmentally-friendly
Transportation is a leading cause of air pollution in climate change. Help your guests make better choices about how they get around during their time off. Choosing to place your vacation rental close to public transport encourages them to ditch the car. Leave maps and timetables for reference. Highlight key attractions and amenities, plus how to get there from the home.
Some vacation rental managers leave a gift of a public transport card with a few dollars on it to encourage guest use of the local transit system.
Small steps to a green vacation
Even minor changes can help make your vacation rental property an environmentally friendly option for your guests. The benefits will be a better guest experience while reducing your energy bills and saving you money. Adding your environmentally friendly vacation rental amenities to your short-term rental listing description could be the perk that wins you the booking.