York Region Out-of-town Travel: Tips For Travelling Sustainably - Accommodation
Here are tips for Accommodation on your sustainable and envionmentally concious vacation and business travel:
- Minimize Your Waste
Members of the "Green" Hotels Association have implemented water-saving measures, energy-saving techniques, and reduced solid waste.
- Mind Your Towels, Linens, and amenities
Green hotels post cards informing guests about their linen and towel programs. Participate in hotel linen programs, or let the hotel know that it's not necessary to change your sheets and towels every day. To keep track of which towel belongs to which family member, pack a handful of safety pins and small colored beads to pin to the one assigned to each family member. Remove the pins before checkout.
Pack a permanent marker to write each person's name on the cups in the hotel bathroom (but not on glasses). Participate in hotel recycling programs by placing recyclables in appropriate bins.
Use electronic checkout using your hotel room's TV, if offered to reduce paperwork (though you may need to do the paper-based checkout if travelling on business). Leave behind any unopened amenity bottles.
- Don't Pre-Heat or Pre-Cool
You'll typically spend more time out of your room than in it, so set the thermostat to a comfortable setting when you are actually in the room. Hotel guests have tremendous power over the hotel's heating and cooling system, and, in turn the hotel's overall energy efficiency.
- Shut Off the Lights
When you leave your hotel room, turn off all the lights, television, and radio to save electricity. In the summer, close the drapes to reduce solar heating but in the winter open the drapes to benefit from the sun's warmth. When exercising, turn off the exercise equipment, sauna, whirlpool, Jacuzzi or tennis court lights when done.
- Wash Your Own Clothes
Using the hotel's laundry service is pricey and wastes water (they use a load for each guest's clothes, to keep them separate). Three options are better: hand-wash in the bathroom sink (using shampoo), use a local self-serve laundromat, or wait until you return home (pack a plastic bag to keep t dirty clothes separate from clean items.
- Know What's Endangered
Do not buy or trade in endangered plants & animals or products made from them, which are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). Often, local merchants offer jewelry, clothing, and accessories made from endangered species such as sea turtle shell, black coral, reptile skins, ivory, and animal furs. In any case, these will be seized by Customs at the border when you return, so why waste your money?