Choosing an eco-friendly honeymoon destination is easier than you might think. Before booking your honeymoon destination, call or email each destination with the following list of questions.
- Is the lodging locally owned and staffed? Keep in mind that local is best, but in some cases weather or transportation issues makes local staffing impossible. Staff may live at a lodge during specific seasons.
- What sort of energy does the lodging rely on? It is powered by alternative energy sources such as wind or solar? Do they offset any energy usage?
- Is their water use sustainable? Ask about low-flow shower heads and toilets and rain barrels systems. Don’t forget to ask about laundry as well. Some lodging nowadays will hold off washing bedding and towels on a daily basis unless a customer specifically requests this. That’s a good thing. Washing laundry daily is a huge waste of water and resources.
- Does the building have any eco-credentials; for example is it LEED certified?
- Does the establishment offer room service or an on-site restaurant? If yes, do they offer local and organic meal choices? If you’re considering an ocean or beach resort they should have some sustainable seafood criteria in place.
- Are organic or other eco-friendly materials used for room textiles like towels, bedding, robes and so on?
- Do they offer organic or eco-friendly body care products such as soap, shampoo and lotion?
- Do they furnish with sustainable furniture such as pieces made with bamboo or FSC certified wood?
- How do they dispose of trash? I know, thinking about trash is not fun but you should find out if the lodging composts, recycles and limits waste when possible.
- What sorts of extra amenities does the lodging feature and is it eco-friendly? For example are energy star refrigerators used in rooms; do they offer a natural swimming pool vs. a chlorine pool; natural spa treatments; and so on.
- Does the lodging respect the earth around it? For example, is nature still intact surrounding the lodging. If tours are given do they also respect the natural area?
- Does the lodging support any community organizations, eco-organizations, local eco-initiatives (think beach clean-ups and animal conservation) or other socially ethical non-profits?
You don’t have to aim for eco-perfection. Eco-friendly policies are growing among the tourism industry, but they have a long way to go. It’s rare to find 100% green lodging.
Decide what matters most to you – organic food or organic sheets? Recycling or offsetting energy use? Many lodging choices offer some but not all of the eco-friendly aspects listed above, so aim high, but know that if you keep looking for that 100% eco-ideal lodging, you may not find a honeymoon destination.