How to stay eco-conscious when choosing a holiday rental in the UK?

11 June 2024

When planning your vacation, it's not just about choosing the right destination, but also about ensuring that your accommodation aligns with your values. Sustainable travel is more than just a trend, it's a responsibility. And this extends to your choice of holiday rentals, from hotels to quaint bed and breakfast establishments. When you're heading to the United Kingdom, it's important to consider the eco-friendly options available. This will not only help you have a green holiday but also contribute to the sustainability of the industry and the environment.

Opt for Green Certified Accommodation

Choosing an eco-friendly holiday rental starts with finding a property that is green certified. These are hotels and other accommodation establishments that have been recognised for their sustainable practices, often by an independent auditing body. These credentials indicate that the property goes beyond just claiming to be eco-friendly and implements effective measures to reduce its carbon footprint.

Green certified properties have made efforts to reduce their water and energy consumption, manage waste efficiently, and contribute towards local conservation efforts. They also source local products and engage in sustainable practices that help the local community. Look for properties that hold certifications such as the Green Tourism Business Scheme (GTBS) or the ISO 14001 Environmental Management.

Energy and Water Conservation

An eco-friendly hotel or holiday rental will prioritise energy and water conservation as part of their sustainability efforts. When looking for an accommodation, check if they utilise renewable energy sources, such as solar or wind power. Energy-efficient lighting and appliances, along with initiatives like encouraging guests to reuse towels and bedding, also point towards a property's commitment to sustainability.

Water conservation can be practised in various ways, from installing low-flow showerheads and toilets to implementing greywater recycling systems. Rainwater harvesting is another way that properties can reduce their reliance on local water supply. Look for these features when choosing a holiday rental.

Waste Management and Recycling

Waste management is a crucial factor in determining the eco-friendliness of a hotel or holiday rental. A property that is focused on reducing, reusing, and recycling waste is one that respects the environment and contributes to sustainable tourism.

Check if there are recycling bins available for guests to separate their waste, or if the property uses biodegradable cleaning products. Composting of organic waste, not providing single-use toiletries, and offering reusable water bottles or water refill stations are some other indicators of effective waste management.

Supporting Local Economy

An eco-friendly accommodation doesn’t just help the environment, but also supports the local economy. This can be done by sourcing local products, employing local staff, and promoting local attractions and experiences to guests.

Such practices help reduce the carbon footprint associated with transporting goods, while also contributing to the economic wellbeing of the community. When booking a holiday rental, look for information about how they support the local economy.

Promoting Environmental Education and Awareness

Finally, an eco-conscious holiday rental will be invested in promoting environmental education and awareness. This could be in the form of information about local wildlife and ecosystems, or tips on how guests can minimise their environmental impact during their stay.

It's not just about practising sustainability, but also about encouraging guests to adopt eco-friendly habits. This is an important aspect of green tourism, and a property that promotes environmental awareness is likely to be genuinely committed to sustainable practices.

Remember, every decision you make can have an impact, and choosing an eco-friendly holiday rental is one way you can help make a difference. Your green holiday in the UK will not only be memorable, but also one that respects and supports the environment and the local community.

Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

Electric vehicle charging stations are becoming increasingly prevalent, and the availability of this amenity at holiday rentals is a sign of an environmentally conscious property. They are catering to the growing number of holidaymakers who choose electric vehicles to minimise their carbon emissions. Whether it's a holiday cottage or a hotel, having an EV charging station is an added convenience for guests and a strong statement of commitment to ecological preservation.

Properties such as Crashpad Lodges and Eagle Brae, for instance, provide this service, showing their commitment to supporting green transportation. When booking a holiday rental, check if they have electric vehicle charging stations or at least access to nearby public charging facilities. This way, you can continue to reduce your carbon footprint while on holiday, even when you’re on the move.

In addition to EV charging stations, some properties go an extra mile by offering bicycles or promoting walking routes for their guests to explore the local area. Such initiatives not only help in reducing carbon emissions but also enhance the holiday experience by offering unique and environmentally friendly ways to savour the local scenery.

Green Cleaning Practices

Cleaning is an important aspect of maintaining any holiday rental and it can significantly contribute to the property's environmental impact. Hence, eco-friendly cleaning practices are a key factor to consider. Look for holiday rentals that utilise green cleaning products. These products are devoid of harmful chemicals that can negatively impact the environment and biodiversity.

In addition to using environmentally friendly cleaning products, some rentals further reduce their impact by incorporating energy-efficient cleaning methods. For instance, they might opt for high-efficiency washers that use less water and electricity.

Also, consider whether the property owners utilise a green laundry service or if they wash linens on-site using eco-friendly practices. This could involve using cold water for washing, air drying instead of using energy-intensive dryers, and reusing towels and linens to reduce water consumption.


When it comes to planning your vacation, remember that you can make a difference with your choices. Opting for an eco-conscious holiday rental in the UK is a significant way to minimise your environmental impact. From choosing green certified accommodation to observing whether they promote renewable energy, waste management and recycling, supporting local economy, promoting environmental awareness, providing electric vehicle charging stations and using green cleaning practices, you can ensure your holiday contributes to the preservation of our planet.

Every holiday letting has a role to play in reducing carbon emissions and conserving our environment. As guests, our choices can influence and encourage property owners to adopt sustainable practices. So, next time when you plan your holiday, let's make it a green holiday. After all, sustainable tourism isn't just about travelling responsibly; it's about enjoying our vacations in a way that respects and preserves the world for future generations.

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