A Green Hotels and Responsible Tourism Initiative is to be unveiled tomorrow (Wednesday) to coincide with World Travel Market World Responsible Tourism Day.
Specialist guides produced by Australian hotel search engine HotelsCombined.com have been developed in partnership with tourism sustainability and hotel greening experts, Dr Sonya Graci and Jacqueline Kuehnel.

The project is designed to help hoteliers, travellers, and local communities develop and promote environmental, social, and cultural sustainability by increasing awareness of issues affecting tourism and showcasing best green practices for hoteliers.

James Ferguson, who is heading the project, said: “We believe there is a moral obligation to conserve the natural environment and give back to the communities where we travel.

“The guides we’ve created on green.hotelscombined.com provide suggestions and solutions, to help hoteliers become more environmentally friendly, and for travelers to enhance their enjoyment of the destination they visit while also being responsible tourists.”

The hotelier’s guide – How to Increase Your Bottom Line by Greening Your Hotel – focuses on identifying the business benefits of going green as well as several best practice examples.

A self-audit checklist is included for hoteliers to use to ‘green’ their own hotel.

Dr Graci, a director of Accommodating Green, said: “It is necessary for hotels both large and small to move towards greening their operations, not only to save money, but to protect the resources that sustain the industry.

“Hotels have to be forward thinking and understand the impact that their business has on the environment and that the environment is necessary for their business.”

The travellers’ guide – The Responsible Traveler Guide – shows consumers how to improve their travel experience while being environmentally responsible.

The guide follows the traveler’s lifecycle offering valuable suggestions for each stage – pre-planning, travelling and post-travel.

Kuehnel, corporate social responsibility, climate change and travel industry veteran, said: “HotelsCombined.com recognised that an informed traveller and a green supply chain are the beginning of a more sustainable tourism industry. These guides demonstrate leadership and a genuine effort to do their part in preserving the wonderful places we love to visit.”