Say goodbye to free hotel toiletries?

Sep 18, 2019

There is a new push to ban those tiny plastic bottles of shampoo, conditioner and bath gel from hotel rooms across New York State.

State Sen. Todd Kaminsky announced his legislative proposal Wednesday, calling single-use toiletry bottles a big source of plastic waste. The Long Island Democrat cited estimates that hotels in New York City alone dispose of an estimated 27 million plastic toiletry bottles annually.

If the ban were enacted hotels could instead use wall-mounted dispensers or packaging made from non-plastic materials.

The idea is gaining support in the industry, with the Hotel Association of New York City and the state Hospitality and Tourism Association both backing Kaminsky's idea.

Last month Marriott International, the world's largest hotel chain, announced plans to eliminate small plastic toiletry bottles worldwide by December 2020 in nearly 1,500 hotels in North America. The expected effect will eliminate over 10 million plastic bottles, which adds up to well over 100,000 pounds of plastic waste annually.

According to the National Parks Service, Xanterra, with properties at nine national parks, transitioned to a company-wide bulk amenity program back in 2013. Delaware North, which runs the Yavapai Lodge at Grand Canyon National Park, began offering bulk amenities in guest rooms a year or two later.

Those opposed worry about the cleanliness and sanitation of the dispensers. They also suggest hotel chains are converting to dispensers only to save money.

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