GOOD TRAVEL SUSTAINABILITY CRITERIA
For Good Travel we have selected hotels, BnBs, cottages and campsites, which are unique and inspiring in very different ways. What they all have in common is that they try to make a contribution to more sustainability - through innovative architecture, regional organic food, health-oriented wellbeing programmes, high environmental standards or social commitment. This way, they have an important impact on the environment and on the people in their respective regions and at the same time make the stay an authentic and lasting experience for the guests.
As individual as the accommodations are, as different ist the focus they set in their respective commitment.
To see at a glance in which sustainability field the hotels, BnBs and holiday homes are active, we have developed the following five icons for better orientation:
Sustainable architecture creates a rich diversity in many places: from the innovative tree hotel to the nostalgic Swedish hut with solar roof - you can discover all these hotels, holiday homes and BnBs under the "Architecture" icon.
But what exactly does sustainable architecture mean? For Good Travel, we have included several criteria and aspects that can contribute to an environmental-friendly construction method:
- The hotel or holiday home is characterised by the fact that the architecture fits into the region and the materials used come from the surrounding area or are at least from certified production.
- The owners have involved the local population in the construction and have, for example, given preference to neighbouring craft businesses.
- During the restoration, special attention was paid to preserving old buildings and protecting monuments or cultural assets.
- Saving energy is an important goal in hotels, holiday homes or BnBs. Some of them have installed photovoltaic systems and improved thermal insulation, others have built entire passive houses.
- In the accommodations, special attention was paid to local, low-polluting and therefore environmentally friendly materials in the furnishing and equipment, or by upcycling old furniture to make it possible to recycle it.
A culinary expedition is always part of travelling. Because it is worth to get to know the typical delicacies in a region. At the same time, it is also an important contribution to the environment if the food comes from local production or organic farming. For hotels and BnBs that serve freshly cooked food from the region, we have designed the "Food" icon - they all fulfil various of the following aspects:
- Freshness is the most important aspect of cooking. The food is gently prepared.
- The kitchen serves regional and seasonal dishes.
- The hotels and BnBs use food from their own agriculture, organic farming or from neighbouring small farms. These do not always have to be certified organic.
- Products that have to come from further afield were traded fairly.
- The cooks respond to individual nutritional wishes: vegetarian, vegan, gluten- and lactose-free.
- Detox dishes are also offered.
On holiday we want one thing above all: to feel good. Peace and relaxation for body and soul are part of it. Many hotels offer their own wellbeing programmes with a holistic focus on health. These range from massages to Qi-Gong and detox cures. You can discover hotels which represent such a Well-Being philosophy under the icon "Well-Being".
They all fulfil some of the following aspects:
- There is a sauna and a rest or retreat room.
- Guests can swim in indoor or outdoor pools.
- The hotel offers massages or holistic treatments.
- Guests can take courses in conscious deceleration: Meditation, stress management, yoga, Qi-Gong and other physical and mental exercises.
- Nutrition also focuses on health: there are Ayurveda cures, therapeutic fasting, detox cures and TCM.
- Natural cosmetic products are offered and used.
The way in which a hotel or BnB runs its business can also make an important contribution to environmental protection - for example, by avoiding waste as far as possible and using energy efficiently. This also includes the basic attitude: Reduce, reuse and recycle. Under the icon Environment we list all hotels that try to operate in a way that respects nature and the environment.
They all fulfill some of the following aspects:
- The hotel, BnB or holiday home tries to contribute to the protection or conservation of the natural resources in its region - that is: it strives to protect and conserve soil, water, air, flora and fauna as well as possible.
- The electricity comes from renewable energy sources or, at best, is green electricity.
- The accommodation has taken measures to increase energy efficiency - for example by using LED and energy-saving lamps or by thermal insulation measures. Efforts are being made to minimise CO2 emissions.
- Wherever possible, the hotel tries to avoid unnecessary waste. For example, through low-waste purchase, the attempt to avoid disposable packaging and instead use recyclable, natural materials for packaging. The waste is separated.
- Savings are also made in water consumption: Towels and bed linen are changed at the guests' request and not automatically on a daily basis. In addition, there is no excessive irrigation of the system. Where available, well or spring water is used. Water treatment plants help to save water.
- The cleaning personnel use environmental-friendly cleaning products.
- Environmental-friendly means of transport such as bicycles or electric cars are made available to guests free of charge.
- The owners or landlords offer incentives for their guests to arrive in an environmental-friendly way: those coming by train, for example, receive free wellness treatments or a bottle of wine as a gift.
Sometimes visible, sometimes invisible to the guest, numerous employees often work in hotels and BnBs. They often come from the region and help to make the stay as pleasant and relaxing as possible for the guests. Some hotels have employee programs to ensure that their work is fair and social. Houses that do this can be found under the "Social" icon.
They all fulfil some of the following aspects:
- The hotel, BnB or holiday home is run by the owner or by a family over several generations. It contributes to the preservation of local traditions and tries to support the local economy.
- Whenever possible, the hotel recruits local staff and respects their local customs and traditions.
- Existing local structures and service providers, such as the local masseur, the neighbouring yoga studio or local tourist guides, are included.
- The income and social benefits for employees are in line with or exceed local and national regulations. Payment is fair, working hours are regulated and labour standards are observed.
- The hotel values the satisfaction of its employees. This includes, for example, that they are regularly offered further training opportunities, that the hotel's own facilities can be used or that a staff house is available.
- There is no discrimination based on gender, race, ethnicity, age or any other kind.
- The hotel supports social projects such as schools, hospitals, charities or the local community.