Marriott, the world’s largest hotel chain, has plans to eliminate mini toiletry bottles at all 7,000 of its international locations by December 2020.
The company has already said goodbye to mini bottles at 1,000 locations in North America, replacing them with larger pump bottles. While the larger bottles will be replaced when empty instead of refilled, they are recyclable (unlike the mini bottles), the company said. When the switch is fully implemented, Marriott anticipates the change will prevent approximately 500 million mini toiletry bottles—1.7 million pounds of plastic—from being sent to landfills every year.
The switch to eliminate mini bottles comes about a month after the IHG hotel group, including hotels like Holiday Inn and InterContinental, became the first in the hospitality industry to eliminate bathroom miniatures.
Last year, Marriott began phasing out plastic straws and stirrers, providing them only upon request. As of July 2019, “the company had met its goal, resulting in an estimated annual diversion of 1 billion plastic straws from landfills,” Marriott International said on its website.
As the hospitality industry as a whole shifts towards more sustainable practices, Marriott aims to reduce landfill waste by 45 percent and responsibly source its top 10 product purchase categories by 2025.
Although eliminating bathroom miniatures is a step in the right direction, hotel chains have a long way to go. Here are a few things we hope hotels will change soon:
- Replace the single-use cutlery at breakfast with “real” silverware.
- Replace the single-use coffee cups and plastic cups that are provided at lobby refreshment stations with reusable cups.
- Replace the single-use cups, also wrapped in plastic, that are provided in rooms with reusable cups. And if you’re worried about cleanliness, just request new cups when you get to your room!
- Ditch the plastic liner for your ice bucket for something less wasteful.
Until these changes are made, don’t forget to bring your tumbler and reusable cutlery with you!