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Responsible hotel in Mexico.

Responsible hotel in Mexico.

Adhering to responsible tourism can sometimes present a significant challenge to conscious travellers: How to choose eco-friendly lodging? How do you know if a hotel really does adhere to rules and a philosophy in protection of the environment? The TripAdvisor Website has offered a solution to this challenge with a United States-launched programme called “Eco-Leaders”, where tourist information is made available about those establishments that are respectful to the environment. As reported in the “green” news Website, Green Lodging News, the number of hotels included in the “Eco-Leader” route has doubled from 1000 to 2100 in the months since the program began. This success has been attributed to the attraction of an initiative that collects the information about green lodging free of charge to be presented on the TripAdvisor site. 

Environmental Requirements

Establishments that want to be a part of the programme must follow a basic series of requirements that TripAdvisor has formulated to ensure the quality of the “green” accommodation. Hotels must provide reliable information on issues vital to the care of the environment and the management of energy, water and waste, placement issues, trade, innovation and education.

Measuring the sustainability by Responsible Hotels.

Measuring the sustainability by Responsible Hotels.

Some of the issues given consideration and designated important include energy monitoring on a regular basis (at least quarterly), a minimum of 75 percent of light bulbs used should be low consumption, the reuse of linens (towels, sheets, etc.), recycling at least two items, personnel training to encourage ecological awareness and environmental education on the part of the hotel.

All of these items are valued and assigned a badge that signifies each. They are classified as four levels: Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. The higher a hotel’s rating, the greater their impact when it comes to the establishment’s green practises. 

Programme Benefits

An important feature of “Eco-Leader” award is the ability to gather customer feedback. So far we have received over 8,000 opinions about the green practises in action at our various accommodations – a number that provides greater reliability to the programme and those involved in it.  It is also important to highlight the TripAdvisor “green filter”, which allows a visitor to search only those places that act in accordance with environmental protection. 

The programme also includes an audit system that reviews those establishments designated “green” to ensure their compliance with all necessary requirements and sustains a level of “Eco-Leader” quality at all times. 

In this way, this programme follows suit with the type of initiatives promoted by Responsible Hotels, as seen over the last three years on its online channel, in support of responsible hotels worldwide. Like TripAdvisor, we categorise hotels according to a scale that allows conscious travellers to book with an assurance that they will get a sustainable holiday, from eco-lodges in Latin America to cabins in Spanish natural parks to hotel chains that stand apart for their environmental care. 

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 El blog de Responsible Hotels sobre la gestión ética y responsables de establecimientos hoteleros. Nos preocupa el medio ambiente y la biodiversidad. Nos encantan los viajes, investigar sobre sostenibilidad y los fines de semana largos. Leer más de este autor

Este artículo está también disponible en: Spanish

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