Holidaymakers believe they have been “greenwashed” by hotel and travel groups claiming to be environmentally friendly.
A survey conducted by the world’s largest online travel guide Greenty.com early this year found that 62 percent of travellers believed that hotels overestimate their green credentials and only 30% say that hoteliers provide travellers with a fair green assessment of their property.
Tourism and travel environmental sustainability expert Stewart Moore from EC3 Global and EarthCheck says the time has come to demystify the sustainability credentials of hotel and travel groups.
“There have been a rising number of green claims from hoteliers and tourism products in the past three years. Many of these claims verge on the edge of greenwash. Consumers need a certified method of knowing which hotels or tourism services are actively pursuing green policies throughout their operations,” said Mr Moore.
EarthCheck has partnered with Greenty.com to demystify the sustainability credentials of hotel and travel groups. EC3 Global manages the EarthCheck certification and benchmarking program, used by more than 1,300 organizations in over 70 countries, for sustainable travel using the latest science and technology.
Through the new partnership, Greenty.com is now able to highlight hotels that have been audited by EarthCheck. Founder of greentry.com Serge Fabre said it is important for consumers to know that a qualified third-party professional has validated the effectiveness of sustainable practices at the hotel or tourism business.
“Our research showed that 60 percent of travellers considered eco-actions from tourism operators as a key element of their booking decision and 31 percent are willing to pay more to say in a green hotel,” said Mr Fabre.
“Today, everything and anything is green. ‘Green’ is a hip word and there are so many green travel labels, some reliable and some not, making the search for a green accommodation very difficult, if not misleading.
“It’s so important for environmental sustainability claims to be demystified. That’s why we have partnered with EarthCheck, so consumers are assured that the tourism operator has been scientifically eco-assessed and their claims are true.”