A study published by Booking.com, which contains insights collected from more than 29.000 passengers from 30 countries, shows that travelers are more determined to travel sustainably - by reducing electricity consumption, the amount of municipal waste or using more environmentally friendly modes of transport.
More and more tourists want to spend their holidays authentically, sustainably and responsibly, and this includes eco-friendly accommodation as well as unique eco experiences. They recognized this trend in Ecobnb.com, an online platform that combines the offer of eco-friendly accommodation and authentic experiences of rural tourism and ecotourism. The platform has been present on the Croatian market since 2019.
The goal is, therefore, to promote green tourism and an authentic way of traveling based on respect for nature and discovering lesser-known destinations.
Nastja Logar, platform manager for Slovenia and Croatia explains: "In recent years, we have witnessed a growing demand for green and sustainable products, and the supply in the market is adjusting accordingly. This is evidenced by the growing number of health food and organic products stores, health food restaurants, eco household products, electric cars and all the way to sustainable fashion and green investments. The continuous growth of the green economy proves to us that consumers - especially millennials and Generation Z - are turning to a sustainable lifestyle, which is also visible in tourism. The Ecobnb platform is focused on the market niche of ecological accommodation facilities. We are a small platform compared to the dominant OTA, but our statistics show a continuous growth of traffic in the last 3 years. Despite the pandemic and challenges in the tourism industry, compared to last year, Ecobnb recorded a 2020% increase in traffic in 33, reaching 8 million page views and 2,75 million users. This proves to us that sustainable tourism and ecological accommodation are the right path. ”
Ecobnb singles out the eco-tourism offer and connects environmentally responsible hosts with travelers in search of peace, clean air, untouched nature, tradition and learning about the local way of life, all through the prism of reducing the carbon footprint of tourism on the environment.
In order for an accommodation to be listed on the Ecobnb.com platform, it is necessary that it meets a minimum of 5 out of 10 eco standards that contribute to reducing costs and improving the environmental sustainability of the facility. These are: organic food, green building, 100% renewable energy sources, solar panels, separation of at least 50% of waste, environmentally friendly detergents, cleaning without cars, energy-saving lighting, water reducers and rainwater collection and reuse .
"Currently, there are 107 ecological accommodation facilities in Croatia. Most of them have eco certificates or labels such as the Green Key, EU Ecolabel, Dalmatia Green or Eco Domus. The Ecobnb platform is fully focused on foreign guests looking for an ecological stay in Croatia, and most of them come from Italy, USA, Germany, Great Britain and France ”, he points out log into.
Considering emerging trends, log into says: "The pandemic and social distancing have stimulated the demand for glamping, which currently exceeds the existing supply. Staying in luxurious tents and tree houses provides travelers with comfort, privacy, contact with nature and a unique experience. Often such an offer is sought by families with small children, which represents a new segment of travelers. We need to be aware that in the future, these children will represent a new generation of travelers who will be looking for authentic experiences in nature, which will definitely stimulate new glamping projects. It is authentic glamping facilities, traditional-style holiday homes and boutique bio hotels that can attract quality guests to less developed destinations. ”
In that sense, log into considers that it is extremely important that landlords support the tourist boards and the County, in order to educate about the application of green business and targeted promotion to the segment of eco-friendly guests.
As a positive example, he cites the Split-Dalmatia County, which in cooperation with Ecobnb in the upcoming cycle of education entitled Ambassadors of tourism of the Split-Dalmatia County integrates sustainable tourism, with the aim of more intensively encouraging private renters to operate sustainably.
A good example is the County of Istria, which in cooperation with Ecobnb singles out the eco offer of the destination under the title Istria eco experience.
"Concreting can be replicated anywhere in the world, but the preserved nature is unique and attracts guests with higher purchasing power. Therefore, we need to be aware of the authenticity of our space, cultural heritage and the importance of preserving the environment. This is exactly what is the basis for creating greater added value and better competitiveness in tourism today. ”, he concludes log into.