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Hotels prioritize sustainability by switching to bulk toiletries over individual bottles

Hotels Switching to Bulk Toiletries

IHG and Marriott are just two of the major hotel groups to announce their switch from travel size toiletries to bulk products.

By December 2020, Marriott plans to eliminate all small shampoo, lotion and shower gel bottles from their 500,000 guest rooms, replacing them with larger, refillable, pump-top options and in-shower dispensers. Since the individual bottles are not often recycled, the hope is that cutting down the use and distribution of plastic will make a sizable difference. We’re talking nearly two million pounds of plastic.

IHG announced its plan to make the same change after banning plastic straws in all IHG hotels in 2018. The hotel group estimates it uses around 200 million miniature bathroom products each year, and has begun phasing them out and replacing them with custom-designed solutions. There is still an emphasis on cleanliness and sanitation, which all travelers expect from their hotel room. Everything, including the bulk products, will be cleaned as thoroughly as the rest of the bathroom, and companies like Marriott have put a system in place for ensuring proper replacement of products. The in-shower products are dispensed from a wall attachment, inside which is a non-refillable bag which is replaced in full when empty by cleaning staff to avoid contamination. 

As hotels roll out these impressive updates to their daily operations, guests will certainly be prioritizing sustainable practices as they make their hotel search. In fact, a 2018 Hilton survey revealed that over 30% of guests look at a hotel’s environmental impact when making their decision. You may not be able to collect those cute travel size bottles anymore, but you’ll be supporting a greater cause.