The idea of implementing energy saving solutions at your hotel sounds great in theory; but in practice, it can raise concerns.
Guest experience is important and not every visitor wants to feel like they’re “roughing it.” We all know running a hotel is expensive and as an owner, you’re looking for ways to save. Cutting corners to implement energy saving solutions at your hotel can negatively impact guests’ experience and result in less-satisfied customers. It’s important to find a balance. Here’s how to adopt energy saving solutions without sacrificing your guests’ comfort.
Hotel inefficiency is costly and it’s not only about going green for the benefit of the environment. Adopting these easy energy saving practices at your hotel can also save you money (and boost your reputation with guests as well).
A study conducted by ENERGY STAR® found that of America’s 47,000 total hotels, the average establishment annually spends an astounding $2,196 per room on energy alone… a category which accounts for 6% of a hotel’s total operating costs. Bottom line? Energy inefficiency is costing you money.
From old appliances to lack of temperature control, to failure to educate on energy efficient best practices, there are several areas within the hotel industry where improvements should be made. If you find yourself wondering how to reduce your operating costs, energy saving solutions are exactly what you’ve been searching for.
Why Invest in Energy Saving Solutions for Your Hotel?
As the ecotourism trend increases in popularity among travelers, it’s important now more than ever for hotel management to implement big changes and put energy saving solutions into action. Customers are attracted to environmentally friendly hotels because they’re conscious about energy use and mindful of wasting resources.
Of course, a hotel must still provide a comforting experience with all the luxuries of home. Guests expect a clean, well-run facility. While they may love your eco-friendly practices, many aren’t ready to pay for a hotel that feels more like a hostel. It’s important to find a balance between energy saving solutions and not detracting from the guest experience.
Executing energy saving solutions is a relatively simple process. In fact, many of the changes you can implement without guests even noticing (but you may want to point out your environmental awareness, as it’s a big draw for concerned visitors). With so many expenses included to run a hotel, saving on energy may even enable you to spend on other luxurious room amenities to wow your guests.
Energy saving solutions help turn your already great hotel into a thriving, environmentally friendly establishment. Guests love the opportunity to enjoy clean, attractive, eco-friendly lodging. It’s time to go green!
Ways to Conserve Energy and Cut Costs at Your Hotel
1. Invest in Energy Efficient Appliances
Investing in energy efficient appliances has the biggest impact of any energy saving solution for your hotel. As you add new appliances and transition out older items, always check the energy efficient rating.
Mini refrigerators, ice machines, and vending machines are powered on 24/7, even when rooms are vacant or the equipment isn’t being used. Refrigerated vending machines cost hoteliers thousands of dollars a year by consistently running through the night. Guests need vending options however. So, when it’s time to upgrade, consider companies like Vending Miser Store who sell ENERGY STAR® rated vending machines. Theses high-tech options are equipped with occupancy sensors to significantly save energy and reduce power usage when not in use.
Energy efficient appliances are a smart long-term investment for hotel owners. In-room amenities like alarm clocks, coffeemakers, and irons need regular upgrading. As you switch and update small electronics, consider purchasing energy efficient options. Start small, implement these equipment changes one floor at a time, and measure the savings impact. Use the extra money to implement energy efficient appliance upgrades throughout your hotel.
2. Implement Temperature Control Solutions
If you’re serious about cutting energy costs, then addressing temperature control in every room is a must. If your equipment is older, consider switching out the in-wall air conditioning and heating units for improved and efficient models. Wall thermostats allow guests to control their temperature settings freely. While this is an important feature for guest comfort, many visitors leave their room with the AC on full blast. This wasted heat and cooling costs you money.
Companies like Telkonet offer eco-friendly energy management software tools for hotel owners. These types of systems include wireless thermostats which allow hoteliers to monitor and control temperatures in the rooms. While guests can set a personalized temperature for the duration of their stay, the system senses when guests leave the room and immediately switches to an energy saving mode. When a guest returns and swipes their room key, the room’s heating technology automatically begins adjusting to the guests’ preferred temperature.
Specific control settings where guests are only allowed to choose temperatures in a certain range (usually 60 to 80 degrees) is another way to reduce cost. Energy saving solutions like this are effective because the guests have some temperature control, but owners are still reducing expenses. As seasons change, so do the temperature needs of your guests. Consider incorporating a temperature control system to drastically cut costs in your favor.
3. Install Water Saving Additions to Every Bathroom
As a hotel owner, you know wasting water is (literally) the equivalent of pouring money down the drain. Thanks to a few popular and easy bathroom upgrades, you can lower your water usage among guests. Cutting back on water usage is an energy saving solution to keep your utility bills down.
Specialized shower heads and sink faucets are prime areas for low-cost improvements. Consider upgrading to low-flow faucets and shower heads. These small extras still provide the quality water pressure your patrons seek without wasting resources. If you’re not financially prepared to renovate all the bathrooms in your hotel, faucet aerators are a simple solution. These small sink accessories attach to your existing faucets to reduce water waste. Specialized water-efficient toilets and sinks with on/off sensors also help to ensure water isn’t left running on a constant basis.
Other energy saving solutions for the bathroom are simple. Installing additional towel hooks seems like a small act, but it saves you money. If guests properly hang their towels up to dry (like they would at home) they won’t need as many fresh towels, saving you money on laundry.
4. Upgrade to Automated Lighting
Hotel rooms equipped with automatic lighting systems and sensors are an effective way to save on energy whenever guests leave the room without turning off the light. Switching out your normal light bulbs for only LED ones is another energy saving solution you can easily incorporate to improve your efficiency.
LED lightbulbs are non-toxic and run more efficiently than ordinary bulbs. Additionally, LED’s also distribute light better than other types of bulbs. This means with a better quality of light, your guests need to turn on fewer lamps in their rooms.
Another way to save on lighting is using automatic lighting systems and advanced technology engineered specially for hotels. Phillips, a technology healthcare company offers RoomFlex for businesses, including the hospitality industry. Their lighting system detects the light needed by the time of day and adjusts accordingly. When guests wake up in the middle of the night, they don’t need to worry about a misstep thanks to the sensor activated anti-stumble lighting feature.
5. Train ALL Hotel Employees (and Guests Too)
Implementing effective energy saving solutions at your hotel takes time. To incorporate new practices, you must first start with educating your staff on the importance of energy savings.
New products, systems and appliances are great, but employees must be trained and familiar with them, to really increase your energy savings. Putting together a course or booklet on what each department can do to chip in can really help spread this necessary knowledge among your staff. If employees are educated and informed on ways to conserve energy, they’re more likely to identify a wasteful act and take steps to address it. Train your housekeeping staff to reset thermostats after they clean a room or turn off any lights not in use.
Informing your guests is also an important part of this process. Patrons who understand why your hotel values conservation are more likely to appreciate your efforts and want to do their part to make a positive change. Allowing guests to opt out of daily housekeeping services and linen changes is a really easy way to cut costs and conserve water.
Running a successful hotel operation is a big job, but incorporating small energy saving solutions each day will help you save money and become more efficient. With a focus on ecology and caring for the planet, patrons are seeking out environmentally conscious places to stay. Take advantage of this opportunity and jump on this hotel trend today!