Home Destinations 9 ways to act responsibly on Earth Day, April 22nd

9 ways to act responsibly on Earth Day, April 22nd

by Paola Fiocchi Van den Brande

How can guests take eco-friendly measures when staying in a holiday villa rental?

As more and more people become aware of the impact of human activity on the environment, responsible travel and eco-tourism are becoming increasingly popular. This can be true also for Guests who book a holiday villa as they are often offered the resources and means to make a significant impact on the local environment.

Here are 9 ways in which Guests can act responsibly and take eco-friendly measures when staying in a villa rental. A reminder to treat our planet with care on World Earth Day on April 22nd.

  1. Use water responsibly

Water is a precious resource, and it’s important to use it wisely. You can preserve water by taking fewer or shorter showers, taking showers instead of bath and turning off the faucet when brushing your teeth.

You can also run the dishwasher and washing machine only when full.

Don’t forget to report any leaks or drips to the villa staff, so they can be repaired promptly.

Guests can also consider re-using towels, and request less frequent bedlinen changes.

  1. Save electricity and gas

Guests can save energy by turning off lights when they leave their bedroom or the house. As mentioned in the point above, you should run washing machines and dishwashers only when necessary, consider washing clothes and linen less frequently and, weather permitting, dry clothes outdoors instead of using a dryer.

Electronics continue to consume energy even when they are turned off, so it’s important to unplug them when they are not in use. Guests can also use power strips to make it easier to turn off multiple electronics at once.

In winter, set the thermostat to a moderate but comfortable temperature or try and lower it by a couple of degrees and wear a thicker layer instead; try and lower the thermostat during the night, if you leave the house for many hours or if windows are often to refresh the rooms.

Be mindful of the use of air conditioning. Air conditioning can consume a significant amount of energy, and guests should avoid abusing it by setting the temperature too low, leaving it on when they are not in the room or leave windows and doors open when the units are still running. When available, you can also make use of fans, open windows, and allow natural ventilation to cool down the villa instead of relying solely on air conditioning.

By being mindful of your use of air conditioning, you can further reduce the carbon footprint and contribute to a more sustainable villa rental experience.

  1. Reduce, reuse, recycle

Guests can reduce waste by bringing reusable water bottles and shopping bags with them, by avoiding single-use plastics and products with excessive packaging.

You must also recycle whenever possible and dispose of waste according to the local regulations. The Villa Manager is usually at hand to answer any query regarding the local recycling programs.

  1. Use environmentally-friendly products

Many cleaning products contain harsh chemicals that can harm the environment. Guests can use environmentally-friendly cleaning products to minimize their impact on the environment. If Villas provide household items, ask the Villa Manager to ensure they are eco-friendly.

Another way for guests to make an impact during their stay is by using eco-friendly sun creams. Traditional sun creams often contain harmful chemicals that can damage coral reefs and other marine life when washed off into the ocean. Guests can opt for sun creams that are biodegradable and reef-safe. Look out for the label “Reef Safe” on the packaging. These type of sun creams are also better for your skin, as they are often made with natural ingredients that are less likely to cause irritation or allergic reactions.

  1. Use public transportation, walk or cycle

Guests can reduce their carbon footprint by using public transportation when available or walking/cycling whenever possible. If a car is necessary, you may want to consider renting an electric or hybrid vehicle. Ask the Villa Manager if it is possible to re-charge the car at the property and what the electricity cost may be.

  1. Respect local wildlife and habitats

Guests can be mindful of the impact their activities may have on local wildlife and habitats. You can avoid disturbing or feeding animals, and stick to designated trails to avoid damaging vegetation, sand dunes, rock formations or other natural habitats.

  1. Purchase local products

Supporting local businesses and purchasing local seasonal products can help reduce the carbon footprint associated with shipping goods from far away as well as supporting the community who may rely on tourism to thrive. Shopping at weekly farmers markets and independent boutiques rather than at large chains is an excellent way to get to closer the locals, learn about their culture and way of living whilst contributing to their livelihoods. Find out about traditional recipes you can cook back at your rental villa to complete a more authentic experience.

  1. Leave no trace

Guests can leave no trace by packing out all trash and holding on to it until it can be disposed in a responsible way, preserving the environment especially in vulnerable areas.

There are many ways in which you can act responsibly and take eco-friendly measures when staying in a villa rental. As more travellers become aware of the impact of human activity on the environment, responsible travel and eco-tourism are becoming increasingly popular, villa rentals can be a part of this movement. By taking small steps towards sustainability even when on vacation, you can help preserve the environment for future generations.

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