The running of a large hotel, with its huge amount of hotel supplies and energy use, can have a fairly large negative impact on the environment. So much so that there are now many green hotels that use renewable energy resources when possible and other resources in more environmentally friendly ways.
These hotels are becoming more and more widespread, but there is still a long way to go before every hotel adopts this greener outlook. So what if there are no green hotels where you are staying? How can you do your bit to help the environment while away from home?
Well, even in a regular hotel, there are still ways in which you can help the environment, by using hotel supplies like hotel linen more conscientiously:
1) Whenever you are out of your room, make sure everything is fully turned off. This includes lights, TV, radio, heating and air conditioning. There are many people who abuse this, simply because they are not footing the electrical bill.
2) Bring a plug in night light from home and use this instead of leaving the room light on all night.
3) If the hotel is promoting any kind of recycling effort, make sure you join in.
4) If the hotel offers complimentary newspapers, either try and pass them along to someone else once you are finished with them, or try and recycle them some other way. You can either ask the management if they recycle papers or even bring them home with you and recycle them with your own papers.
5) Keep the wrapper intact and bring home the hotel soap; otherwise it will only go to waste once you leave.
6) Conserve water in the same way you would at home. Try and take short showers and don’t leave the water running while cleaning your teeth.
7) Most hotel lobbies offer a wide selection of tourist brochures. If you don’t need them, don’t take them. You can even return ones you have used to the rack instead of dropping them in a bin somewhere. This is a waste of paper.
8) Don’t pour water or take food that you don’t intend to drink or eat. Some hotels offer free self-service breakfast buffets in which you can pile your plate as high as you like. Some people do this just because they can, and end up leaving half the food they put on their plate. If you aren’t all that hungry, leave the food for someone who is.
9) Bring your own reusable mug rather than using several disposable plastic ones.
You can even ask the hotel not to change your sheets and towels every day. It isn’t particularly necessary to do this, hotels just do it as part of their service, as a courtesy. While some may be hesitant to break from policy, others should understand your requirements.
As you can see, a lot of these use common sense. Others simply involve reusing hotel supplies as you would your own at home. They may seem like small things but they can make a difference if enough people make an effort.