Get ready for greenloop: 4 ways to reduce waste at your attraction

Encouraging sustainable behaviour doesn’t have to be complicated. Check out these 4 easy ways to minimise your waste on-site this Earth Day.
April 2021

Last week, we explored the rise of the ‘Green Guest’ and examined how younger consumers lead the way when it comes to sustainable issues. What we discovered was that it’s no longer enough for guests to adopt sustainable practices at home- they want to see the brands and experiences they love getting in on the action too!

Don’t have a sustainable agenda yet? We’ve got you covered. Check out our top 4 ways to reduce waste at your attraction below:  

1. Ditch the single-use plastic!

In the UK alone, 75% of consumers consciously avoid single-use plastics, yet when they head out for the day, they’re faced with a barrage of takeaway meal options that often aren’t recyclable. By taking small steps, we can support customers’ choices without making them feel guilty about their day out. 

Consider introducing compostable containers and cups or offering small discounts for customers bringing reusable containers on site. Research has shown that incentives or ‘nudges’ such as these are among the most effective ways of driving behavioural change. So not only will you be supporting customers who are already engaging in sustainable practices, you’ll be encouraging others to follow suit! 

2. Go paperless with visitor attraction software.

Every year, we cut down 10 million trees to create receipts, which usually can’t be recycled. Add the maps, tickets and brochures that you’re handing out to guests all day long, and you’ve got a sizeable carbon footprint. In 2019, Twycross Zoo ditched their traditional paper maps in favour of interactive maps from Attractions.io Their main driver for going digital? Reducing the amount of waste they produce and ultimately minimising their carbon footprint.

By adopting visitor attraction software, you too can reduce your print waste and help guests make the most of their day with easy to use interactive resources like digital maps, mobile food ordering and virtual receipts. And going paperless won’t just keep your guests happy- you’ll save thousands by reducing printing costs and simultaneously releasing funding to reinvest in future initiatives.

quote from Twycross zoo about switching to interactive maps

3. Take the hassle out of refilling and recycling.

Whilst switching to compostable cups and containers is a step in the right direction, the best possible way to reduce waste is not to create any in the first place. Make “reduce, recycle, reuse” your mantra and give guests as many ways as possible to have a zero waste day out. Try offering bottomless soda refills (why not design reusable bottles that guests can take away as a souvenir) or set up refillable water stations next to your top attractions.

Often, the most significant barrier to adopting sustainable behaviour is not knowing how to get involved. If you implement these initiatives on-site, make sure your guests know about them! Mark recycling areas and refillable water stops in your Attractions.io map so that guests can easily navigate to the spot nearest to them. 

Banner showing refillable water stations to aid sustainability

4. Host your own events.

Want to become a leader in sustainable guest attractions? Make raising awareness a crucial part of your guest experience. Today’s savvy consumers are increasingly switched on to ‘greenwashing.’ In other words, token gestures just won’t cut it, and the attractions standing out are those actively helping their guests make a difference.

Consider creating green events that guests can get involved in. Sea Life Aquariums regular beach cleans have become a hit with the public, who help experts clear litter and learn about the impact of waste on wildlife in the process, allowing them to act on their learnings from their centres. Similarly, Disney’s latest app includes activities with a recycling message for children, helping them learn and have fun along the way.   

Want to learn more? Join us at Greenloop.

As public consciousness continues to grow, emphasising your position as a sustainable guest attraction makes visiting you a desirable behaviour in itself. 63% of consumers say that they’re more loyal to brands and services that emulate their values. So, if minimising waste is their priority, it needs to be yours too. 

By pursuing a consumer-driven sustainability strategy, you’ll reap the rewards as customers begin to see you as a destination that aligns with their values. 

Want to learn more? This is the second post in a three-part series, culminating in an informal discussion between Mark Locker and Jacob Thompson of Attractions.io, plus special guests at the Greenloop sustainability conference on April 20th. Join us there.

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Mark Locker

April 2021
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