So we talked in a “Going Green Gives You GreenBack” how beneficial going green is for anyone in the hospitality business. Now we’ll talk about how to do this. Remember there are many ways to go green, you just have to choose what is best for you.
Linen Reuse Program
Now quite common in most hotels, a linen reuse program has huge benefits on multiple parts of a hotel. This program is when you ask guests to reuse their bed sheets and towels. The rules vary on how to implement. You could ask the guest to place the designated card in a certain place. Or you could ask the guest to hang the towels they want to reuse and place on the ground the ones they want to be cleaned. However you want to do this program, please make sure you make sure the signage is clearly written and communicated to the guests. There is signage found online or you could create your own. This program will save your housekeeping time, reduce cleaning costs on laundry, and give the guest freedom of choice. Win-Win.
There are many ways to save water but some of them include install low-flow shower heads and sink aerators. You can even switch to low-flow toilets or toilet-tank fill diversity. If you do your own laundry you can retrofit or upgrade your facilities with efficient laundering equipment. For those with irrigation systems, you can hire a “WaterSense” certified professional to review your existing system for efficiency defaults. Ice machines are a common place for water drainage problems, review these appliances and if possible ensure they are Energy Star qualified. The EPA has a great report for hotels to use.
You electricity budget will love you for this. Some of the costs for switching to energy efficient products might seem high but, all in all, worth it in the end. Switching from any type of lighting to LED (Light Emitting Diode) will help reduce your electricity use, lower your carbon footprint, and last 5-20 times longer. You can even put them into the Exit Signs around your property. They are also overall safer than traditional CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lights). There is a lifetime cost of a light bulb in which LED can save between 40%-80% on electricity and quickly pay themselves off. Using sensors and/or timers in conjunction with LEDs gives you the most bang for your buck. Simply educating your staff on the what to do when they see a light that is turned on, that doesn’t need to be. Housekeeping staff can be given a set of lights to turn off and one during their cleanings. A good company that can help you in the United States, to get your real ROI on switching lights in your building, is Frontier Illumination based out in California. The knowledgeable and hands-on partnership that is quite useful if you are a small company. While lighting is a somewhat easier cost to take on, you could take it a step further and look for solar paneling to help reduce your cost. This is a big commitment but long term benefits. With this, there are many tax rebates and tax credits offered on the state and federal level. And last but not least, you could review your building insulation and reflective roof covering to help cut the amount of heat and cold that infiltrates the building. Getting a specialized inspector would be the best route for this.
There are many ways we can expand on other ways to go green. The main thing to remember is it is a mutually beneficial way to run your business. You help yourself and others by doing this.