Airbnb Advice,

23rd March 2020

Keeping your Airbnb Green

Did you know that approximately 500 billion plastic bags are used worldwide each year? And these bags have an average lifespan of 15 minutes? Sustainability has become a very big topic in recent years, and it’s not hard to see why due to the havoc global warming is causing to our environment (I can hear Donald Trump saying fake news right now). In order to keep your Airbnb green to fit with your morals, and entice a whole new audience of guests, keep reading

Why do travellers want to travel green?

Eco-travellers want to explore new places and discover new things without leaving a yeti-sized carbon footprint. For many people, these environmental practices shouldn’t stop just because they’re on holiday.

Environmental practices can include decreasing their water and energy consumption and using more sustainable transport.

Eco-friendly ideas

Light up your eco-friendly Airbnb with some LED lights

You’ll be saving a lot more than power with LED lightbulbs. As well as lasting 6x longer than regular bulbs, they are also a lot more efficient, and relatively cheap. Did you know that these lightbulbs are 80% more efficient than traditional lighting, and only 5% of the energy is wasted as heat? Mind blown! 

Plant-based products are popular

Say no to chemicals and keep things au natural with plant-based products. As well as being mainly allergen-free, these products won’t pollute the waters with nasty chemicals (which cause adverse effects such as killing animals and affecting their reproduction cycles). Some eco-brands stocked in New Zealand include Ecostore, Dream Eco-Products, and Eco Planet. You could even make your own cleaning products (from everyday ingredients if you would prefer). 

Plastic is not fantastic

Everyone knows this fact, and so it should come as no surprise that eco-travellers are not fans of single-use plastic. Therefore, you should aim to eliminate plastic from your Airbnb property. This includes replacing plastic bags with canvas or string bags, avoiding products with lots of plastic packaging, and using rubbish liners made from fake plastics. Glass containers and re-usable plastic containers are also great options for takeaway food options.

Single-use toiletries are not a friend of mother nature

Yes, little tiny shampoo bottles and packaged soaps look cute, but wouldn’t you rather choose to help the planet? To do this you can either use shower dispensers and buy large bottles of shampoo products (which can be recycled, of course). Otherwise, there are also eco-soaps and eco-shampoo bars that are long-lasting and come without all the plastic packaging.

Use leftover food to feed a friend

Instead of feeding the landfill, let guests the worms, by keeping a small compost bin in the kitchen. Just make sure guests are reminded to empty the bin, and know where to empty the bin because otherwise the food will go moldy and smell terrible. You should also check this bin has been emptied in between guests just to be safe. This is a great way to show some eco-love because 1/3rd-2/3rds of all the food the world produces is wasted each year. So if everyone (or most people) got a compost bin, then this could make a huge dent on the world’s food wastage.

As well as compost bins, make sure you have different bins for different recyclables such as plastics and paper (and make sure you have rules so guests know how to use them). 

Two-towel rule 

To avoid extra washing on your part, and extra cleaning products, water, and energy stick to 2 towels, 2 washcloths, and a hand towel per every 2 days. If you have a shelf that’s fully stocked with towels and cloths, you’ll find that these items will be used and abused. I mean even the queen doesn’t need a towel every time she washes!

Opt for organic

Try to avoid artificial materials and opt for organic in the case of linens, towels, rugs, and other furniture. As well as being good for the environment, organic materials are also best for those with skin allergies and skin conditions.

Recycled products are rad!

Avoid creating additional waste by using recycled products when possible. Examples of these products include recycled toilet paper rolls and toiletries (because let’s be honest, we doubt your bum can tell the difference).

Leave a list

Regardless of whether you care about being eco-friendly or not, every guest would appreciate being left a bus/train timetable or even written instructions! Public transport is a much cheaper and more eco-friendly option than hiring a car, so make sure you leave timetables to different areas of the city (and particularly the hotspots.)

Purify the place by adding plants

As well as evoking a sense of calm and serenity, plants also suck up toxins that people are exposed to in household environments and replace this with oxygen. We sure do appreciate the gesture!

Conclusion

In conclusion, rid yourself of those doom-and-gloom feelings by doing as much as you can to be good to mother nature. You’ll be surprised the difference this makes in getting guests to stay. These suggestions are also not very hard to implement. Just remember to add words such as ‘eco-friendly’ to your title and listing (and maybe mention some reasons why/photos of the eco-implementations) because people are sure to appreciate this, and bookings should increase.

Written by Lauren Middleton