Discovering Airbnb: How Eco-Friendly Is It Really?

Escape Cadet Staff

Introduction to Airbnb’s Green Practices

Did you know sustainable tourism is on the rise? And leading the charge of this green revolution is Airbnb. Profoundly influencing the world of travel accommodations, Airbnb has adopted sustainability as a core business principle. This article aims to highlight Airbnb’s commendable efforts to prioritize green living through various initiatives. We will also discuss why and how Airbnb hosts can follow suit, thereby enhancing their brand value and profitability, while contributing significantly to environmental stewardship.

Emphasizing Airbnb’s Environmental Impact

In recent years, Airbnb has taken strides to become more environmentally friendly. They achieve this through various initiatives, pushing forward in sustainable tourism. The following key strategies emphasize Airbnb’s commitment to going green.

Energy Efficiency in Homes

Many Airbnb hosts are making progressive changes to their accommodation offerings. By investing in energy-efficient appliances and systems, they minimize carbon footprints. Let’s consider some common practices.

Green energy sources

Many hosts are incorporating renewable energy sources within their properties. This includes solar panels or wind turbines, often reducing reliance on traditional energy grids.

Energy-efficient appliances

Energy Star labeled devices are becoming an Airbnb standard. These appliances consume less power, contributing to electricity saving and lower emissions.

Smart home systems

Smart home technologies have seen a rise in Airbnb properties. Automating light, heating, and cooling systems facilitate energy saving when the property is not occupied.

Airbnb’s Earth Day Initiative

Airbnb recognizes its social responsibilities and performs several outreach programs focused on ecology. One such program is Airbnb’s Earth Day initiative.

Tree planting

For this initiative, Airbnb plants a tree for every booking made on Earth Day. It’s a simple yet effective method to offset carbon emissions and support reforestation.

Airbnb’s Green Travel Collections

Airbnb promotes green living through their listings. The “Green Travel Collection” is a feature that highlights environmentally friendly cottages, houses, and apartments.

Eco-labelled properties

This collection specifically highlights properties that have been Eco-certified or carry green labels. This allows guests to actively choose accommodations prioritizing sustainability.

Airbnb’s Carbon Neutral Commitment

In 2020, Airbnb announced its plan to become carbon neutral by 2030. What does this mean and how does it translate into action?

Greenhouse Gas Assessment

    First, Airbnb has committed to measuring and publishing greenhouse gas emissions generated from their business operations.

    Sustainability Standards

    Secondly, they plan to introduce new sustainability standards for hosts and guests to reduce energy usage and waste.

    Carbon Offsetting

    Finally, they will compensate for any remaining emissions by investing in carbon offsetting projects.

Making Your Airbnb More Sustainable

As an Airbnb host, making your property more sustainable not only contributes to the overall preservation of the planet, but it can also attract environmentally conscious guests. Implementing small and large eco-friendly modifications to your property could positively impact your booking rate and guest reviews. Here are some factors to consider when aiming for a more sustainable Airbnb experience.

Water conservation

Next to energy efficiency, water conservation is a crucial component of environmental stewardship. Here are some measures hosts can take to conserve this precious resource.

Low-flow appliances

Investing in low-flow toilets, shower heads, and faucets can significantly reduce the water consumption of your property.

Reusing Water

Semi-grey water from the kitchen or bathroom can be reused to irrigate plants. A gray water system could be considered for environmentally conscious hosts.

Waste Management

In our day-to-day activities, we generate various forms of waste which, if poorly handled, could harm the environment. As a host, attention to effective waste management is imperative.


Composting is an effective method to recycle kitchen scraps and yard waste. It not only reduces waste but also enriches the property’s soil quality.

Recycling bins

Ensure your property has suitable recycling bins for glass, plastic, paper, and other recyclables. Clear instructions for their use can help guests contribute to your waste management efforts.

Use of Eco-friendly Products

Switching to eco-friendly products for cleaning, toiletries, and other requirements significantly reduce the harmful chemical footprint of your Airbnb property.

Eco cleaners and toiletries

Many conventional cleaning products involve harsh chemicals that harm the environment. Opting for eco-friendly cleaning products can help reduce this impact. Using organic and biodegradable toiletries for guests can also contribute.

Organic beddings and towels

Organic cotton is gentler on the environment than traditionally grown cotton. Providing organic bedding and towels can further your commitment to sustainability.

Local partnerships

Aligning with local environmental groups or businesses can boost your sustainability efforts and contribute positively to your local community.

Supporting local businesses

Providing locally sourced products, like soaps or coffee, can reduce carbon emissions associated with long-distance transport and supports local economies.

Collaborating with environmental initiatives

Partnerships with local environmental initiatives can allow hosts to contribute to local ecology. This could include tree planting initiatives, clean-ups, or other conservation projects.

Remember, every small step counts. By considering these practices, any Airbnb host can contribute to a more sustainable future.

Kickstarting Your Green Journey with Airbnb

While Airbnb sets in motion its green initiatives and policies, it’s equally crucial for hosts to understand and take part in these sustainable practices. Here are some reasons why and how you can do it.

Potential Brand Benefits of Going Green

Becoming eco-friendly is not just about conserving energy or promoting sustainability. It has a profound impact on your brand image as an Airbnb host and can lead to more benefits than you might think.

Attracting eco-conscious guests

With a growing trend of sustainable travel, eco-friendly Airbnb properties are likely to attract a more considerable number of environmentally-conscious guests. It can potentially lead to an increased booking rate.

Positive guest reviews

Guests are likely to appreciate efforts to reduce environmental impact. Consequently, positive feedback and reviews can enhance reputation and brand image.

Cost savings

Energy-efficient appliances or water conservation solutions can lead to significant cost savings in the long run due to lower utility bills.

Green Certifications for Airbnb Properties

Getting a green certification can be an effective way to showcase a commitment towards sustainability. Few widely recognized certificates you can aim for include:

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification

This certification is internationally recognized as a mark of achievement in buildings designed to lower operating costs and increase asset value, all while being environmentally friendly.

Green Key

Green Key is a prestigious eco-label for tourism and leisure establishments, certifying that they adhere to the strict criteria stipulated by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE).


EcoBnb is an eco-label for lodgings that respect nature and sustainability. They certify properties that have fulfilled at least five of their ten eco-sustainability requirements.

Cultivating a Green Mindset among Guests

While striving to greenify your Airbnb property, it’s also important to encourage guests to practice sustainable tourism during their stay.

Friendly reminders

Leave gentle reminders around your property about energy-saving practices like turning off lights when not in use or reducing water consumption.

Provide resources

Equip your Airbnb property with the necessary resources for recycling, waste management, and composting. A clear set of instructions can support guests in these practices.

Initiate a green challenge

You can get creative and initiate a “green challenge” where guests are encouraged to follow specific sustainable steps during their visit. This can also showcase your commitment to environmental protection.

Taking One Step at a Time

Transitioning toward a more sustainable Airbnb business can be a gradual process. Begin by assessing your current practices, prioritize areas of improvement, and then make the necessary changes. Remember, every step towards sustainability helps contribute to a greener planet. And enjoy the journey!

Increasing the Value of Airbnb Through Sustainability

The value of Airbnb properties can be significantly increased by incorporating sustainable practices into the management and operation of the properties. From eco-friendly accommodations to community engagement initiatives, there are numerous ways to boost the appeal and profitability of Airbnb rentals while also contributing to environmental conservation.

Invest in Sustainable Renovations

Airbnb hosts can invest in sustainable renovations to improve their properties, making them more attractive to the increasing number of guests who value green living.

Insulation Upgrades

Upgrading insulation helps conserve energy by stabilizing indoor temperatures, reducing the need for air conditioning or heating. This not only reduces carbon footprint but can also lower energy bills.

Efficient Lighting

Switching to LED lights can significantly reduce energy consumption compared to conventional light bulbs. They also last longer, reducing wastage.

Green Building Materials

Using green building materials, such as reclaimed wood or recycled-metal, in renovations shows a commitment to reducing environmental impact. These materials are also generally more durable and require fewer repairs.

Community Engagement

Engaging with the community can set Airbnb hosts apart in the eyes of potential customers.

Local Events and Activities

Promoting local events and activities can not only support local economies but also incentivize guests to reduce travel emissions.

Guest Education

Providing guests with information on the locality, its culture, and ways to maintain eco-friendly behaviors during their stay can educate them on sustainable living, while simultaneously enhancing their travel experiences.

Profitability of Sustainable Airbnb Properties

The potential for profit in sustainable Airbnb properties is substantial. Here’s why:

Competitive Advantage

Sustainability is becoming a decisive factor for many customers, especially among millennials and Gen Z travelers. Therefore, eco-friendly properties are likely to have a competitive advantage in the market.

Influencing Booking Decisions

Many guests may be willing to pay a premium for stays at properties that demonstrate values that align with their own, such as environmental preservation.

Higher Customer Satisfaction

Providing an eco-friendly experience can lead to higher customer satisfaction and result in good reviews, often leading to repeat bookings and recommendations.

Maximizing Impact with Airbnb’s Initiatives

Alongside implementing their own sustainable practices, hosts can also leverage Airbnb’s initiatives to maximize their environmental impact and potentially increase their property’s appeal to guests.

Participating in Airbnb’s Programs

Airbnb runs various programs that hosts can participate in to further improve their sustainability practices and make their properties more attractive to guests.

Airbnb’s Host Protection Insurance

As part of its commitment to sustainability, Airbnb provides a Host Protection Insurance program, which covers hosts for up to $1 million USD in damages. This can incentivize hosts to invest in sustainable renovations without fear of financial loss.

Airbnb Plus

Airbnb Plus is a selection of high-quality homes known for their great ratings, attention to detail, and the hosts’ commitment to providing a great stay. Airbnb Plus homes are visited in person to ensure comfort, consistency, and design. By providing energy-efficient devices and implementing eco-friendly practices, hosts can increase their chances of getting their property listed under Airbnb Plus.

Leveraging Airbnb’s Visibility

Airbnb has a vast reach and is recognized for promoting sustainable tourism. By listing on Airbnb, hosts can leverage this visibility to attract eco-conscious travelers.

Green Collections Highlight

Properties that adhere to high environmental standards can be featured in Airbnb’s Green Collections. This not only increases the visibility of the property but also appeals to the growing demographic of eco-conscious travelers.

Airbnb Experiences

Hosts can organize eco-friendly activities as part of Airbnb’s Experiences. These can range from city farming tours to DIY organic product workshops. They offer hosts an additional stream of revenue and help guests engage in locally immersive, sustainable tourism.

By incorporating sustainability into every aspect of their Airbnb operation, hosts can provide value to their guests, benefit from cost savings and increased profitability, and actively contribute to the wellbeing of the planet.

Conclusion: Airbnb’s Green Steps Forward

In recent years, Airbnb has boldly stepped forward as a champion for environmental responsibility. Through initiatives like Earth Day tree planting, the Green Travel Collections feature, and a commitment to carbon neutrality by 2030, the company has demonstrated a proactive approach. Airbnb hosts worldwide are also implementing sustainable practices, adopting energy-efficient appliances, promoting water conservation, and using eco-friendly products.

Airbnb’s proactive environmental steps not only position the brand favorably but also help hosts increase property value and appeal. By highlighting these actions, hosts can attract eco-conscious travelers and secure better reviews, leading to greater profit. Adoption of eco-friendly practices also aligns with Airbnb’s wider visibility and influence in promoting sustainability. Indeed, as the concept of ‘green tourism’ gains traction, Airbnb has set itself on a promising trajectory to champion the industry’s green transformation.

How is Airbnb committed to being environmentally friendly?

Airbnb has initiated various programs that promote sustainability, including Earth Day tree planting, promoting eco-labeled properties through the “Green Travel Collection,” and pledging to become carbon neutral by 2030.

What can hosts do to make their Airbnb properties more sustainable?

Hosts can adopt energy-efficient technologies, invest in water conservation strategies, manage waste effectively, use eco-friendly products, and partner with local environmental initiatives to make their properties more eco-friendly.

Why should hosts aim for a sustainable Airbnb property?

For hosts, transitioning to a sustainable Airbnb property can potentially attract more guests, garner positive reviews, save costs, and contribute to a greener planet.

How can hosts leverage Airbnb’s initiatives for their advantage?

By participating in Airbnb’s programs like the Host Protection Insurance and Airbnb Plus, hosts can maximize their environmental impact and property appeal. They can also leverage Airbnb’s visibility to attract more eco-conscious guests.

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