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October 19 2015 – Next week Travindy will be attending the inaugural Whale Heritage Sites Summit in the Azores. We’ve written about it before here – in essence the idea is to create a network of locations around the world that are the leaders when it comes to conservation of whales and offering great whale watching experiences. Jeremy Smith Read more.

Asia has been slow to embrace sustainability. But gradually more sectors of the business events industry — from Australia and Singapore, to the Philippines and Hong Kong, are realising that being sustainable is not merely the right thing to do — it’s the smart thing to do. Steve Cray. Read more.

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This study considers current attitudes towards and adoption of environmentally sustainable practices of Victorian  tourism enterprises. Using a purposive sample of businesses in the Geelong Otway region, in-depth interviews were conducted. These interviews provided a wealth of information relating to perceived benefits and barriers to adopting environmentally sustainable practices. The findings demonstrate that, while many operators are aware of environmentally sustainable practice and have a positive personal philosophy towards implementing them, they remain constrained by business needs  such as customer demands and limited acceptance of certification and accreditation programs.

by Sue Beeton, Suzanne Bergin-Seers and Christine Lee

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Ithaca, NY, April 2, 2014 – Hotels that have earned the ISO 14001 certification had higher guest satisfaction scores than those with no such certification, according to a study published by the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research (CHR). The study, which surveyed guests at 6,850 hotels in Spain, found that 4-star hotels particularly benefited from higher guest satisfaction scores when they held the ISO environmental management certification.

The study, “Environmental Management Certification (ISO 14001): Effects on Hotel Guest Reviews,” is available at no charge from the CHR. It was written by María-del-Val Segarra-Oña, Angel Peiró-Signes, Rohit Verma, José Mondéjar-Jiménez, and Manuel Vargas-Vargas. Segarra-Oña and Peiró-Signes are at Politechnic University of Valencia, Mondéjar-Jiménez is dean of Social Sciences School of Cuenca at the University of Castilla-La Mancha, where Vargas-Vargas is an associate professor. Verma is a professor at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration.

“This is one of several studies that indicate clear benefits from eco-certification, and one of these benefits seems to involve improved operations,” said Verma. “In this study, we see that guests do appreciate those operating improvements. This is especially true for upscale hotels, where certification boosted guest ratings significantly.” The ISO 14001 standard, which can apply to any business, specifies a path for continuous improvement and control of a firm’s environmental performance.

The Spanish study found that the guests gave significantly higher satisfaction ratings to 4-star hotels that met the ISO 14001 standard than to their non-certified competitors. On the other hand, guest rating differences relating to certification in 5- and 3-star hotels were muted. Thus, the results imply that acquiring ISO 14001 certification may give upscale hotels a distinctive asset that leads them to a competitive advantage over similar non-certified properties. On the other hand, in 5- and 3-star properties, it appears guests are focused on other factors when they make their satisfaction ratings.

Originally published as Sustainable Hotels Earn Higher Guest Ratings, Says Cornell Study by The Cornell Center for Hospitality Research (CHR)

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