The World Travel & Tourism Council’s (WTTC) global Hotel Sustainability Basics initiative has reached more than 1700 hotels verified across 70 countries worldwide.

The independent global verification programme is overseen by internationally recognised verifiers Green Key and SGS.

The WTTC aims to empower hotels of all sizes to follow a 12-step sustainability programme aimed at reducing carbon emissions, promoting nature conservation and ensuring local communities benefit from the hotel’s operations.

During its inaugural year, hotel groups from major travel and tourism destinations such as China, France, Germany, India, Mexico, Norway, the Philippines and South Africa have joined the initiative.

Major hotel brands which have now adopted “the Basics” include Jin Jiang, one of the world’s biggest hotel groups with more than 10,000 properties, European hotel giant Louvre Hotel Group, Choice Hotels and the Radisson Hotel Group.

Other major travel and tourism brands joining the initiative include adventure travel specialist Intrepid, British Airways Holidays, the HBX Group and WebBeds.

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In a speech at ITB (the Internationale Tourismus Börse) Berlin in 2024, WTTC President and CEO Julia Simpson highlighted the commitment of the hotel industry to a more sustainable future.

“Our goal is to have a globally recognised trademark that shows a hotel is supporting the planet by saving energy, cutting plastics, protecting nature and supporting their local community. It is a win-win,” said Simpson.

In February 2024, the WTTC urged EU stakeholders to increase support for the travel and tourism sector.