Memorial Day serves as the official kick off of the busy summer travel season. The B&B Team hopes you all had a successful start to the season! There are more than 1.5 billion ‘person trips’ made in the US for leisure each year. That is a lot of individuals making an impact on your destination location’s environment.
The Center for Sustainable Tourism is an organization based in East Carolina University in North Carolina. One of their many goals is to ‘offer solutions to challenges facing the tourism industry and destination communities as they balance economic viability with socio-cultural and environmental enhancement and equity.’ What? That is a real mouthful of environmentally correct words. Thankfully the group recently came out with a Travel Care Code which includes 10 simple practical suggestions for tourists. I also thought the suggestions could be helpful for innkeepers. Here is a sampling of the 10 points for tourists followed with my comments:
- Don’t Leave Your Good Habits at Home. If your guests practice good recycling habits at home than they would like to do the same when they travel. I have recently seen many innkeepers provide recycling containers in their guest rooms as well as in the public pantry and outside seating areas. This makes it real easy for your guests.
- Learn About Your Destination. Innkeepers are the best when educating their guests about the environment, culture and history that make each destination unique. This education is best when it starts on your website on a good destination page and of course your blog.
- Support Locals. The money your guests spend helps support local artisans, farmers and business owners whose livelihood depends on tourism. Innkeepers are also the best when it comes to recommending their favorite independent local businesses. From local art on your walls to selling local maple syrup, you do it all and guests really appreciate it.
The complete Travel Care Code is available to republish under the terms of their free license. I believe this would be a great list to publish on your website and display in your inn. Some of you of a certain age may remember the slogan and campaign that started in the 60’;’ Every Litter Bit Helps’? I think we have come a long way environmentally from simply picking up litter, but it is still a challenge and this latest tool may help us all meet the challenge.