Will travelers be looking for green lodging given our global financial woes?
The shrinking economy has some saying green was just a fad we can no longer afford. Travel writer, Paul Mansfield of Telegraph Media says, "It would be nice to think that the economic shock will usher in a period of sustainable travel. But my bet is that green will suddenly no longer be fashionable, as people demand the right to spend their limited money as they wish. Expect the term "green" to disappear overnight from many brochures.
And business travelers may be quick to abandon sustainable practices. Commenting on the results of a recent Business Travel World survey which shows a whopping 76% of CFOs plan to cut travel, editor in chief, Betty Low, said: “’Green’ initiatives seem to be disappearing from the corporate landscape as quickly as they arrived. Only last year companies were at pains to publicise their environmental policies which could include anything from using environmentally friendly taxi companies to sustainable sourcing. Since the onset of the credit crunch, however, many of those same companies are becoming increasingly concerned about their own sustainability and consequently such policies seem to have moved down the agenda.”
But TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel community, recently announced contradicting findings. The results of its annual travel trends survey of more than 3,000 U.S. travelers show travelers appear to be going lean and green by visiting national parks, hiking, and engaging in adventure activities. A greater amount of Americans said they will be environmentally conscious in their travel decisions in 2009, and more plan to visit eco-friendly hotels in the coming year.
The green trend may be evident in their choice of transportation -- 22 percent said they'll go biking while on vacation this year, compared to 13 percent, last year. Forty-seven percent of travelers plan to go hiking this year, up from 43 percent, last year. Read more about the TripAdvisor survey results…
Readers of this blog also contradict that green is vanishing. They still plan to travel green according to the survey we ran in October. The majority, 91.8 percent said that all other things being equal, they would make the socially responsible choice or "go green even in tough times."
And being green is still what Eco Luxury prospects and guests report is the best feature of our properties. Findings indicate a need to clarify that when we say "luxury," we mean taking it easy, not stuff. But otherwise, respondents say going green hasn't vanished in a haze of economic self-preservation. In fact, taking care of the planet may be the very path to take to care for ourselves.