IHG Eliminating Miniature Bath Amenities Globally

Filed Under: Hotels, IHG Rewards

Wow, this is a huge development.

IHG switching to bulk-size amenities globally

IHG has today announced that they’ll switch entirely to bulk-size bathroom amenities by 2021.

This will apply to all 17 IHG brands, ranging from InterContinental to Holiday Inn Express. IHG is one of the world’s largest hotel groups, with around 5,600 properties that have around 843,000 guest rooms.

IHG says that this will remove 200 million miniature bottles from their properties every year. This is part of a larger sustainability agenda intended to reduce plastic waste, and it makes IHG the first global hotel company to commit all brands to removing bathroom miniatures in favor of bulk-size amenities.

IHG’s CEO, Keith Barr, had the following to say regarding this:

“It’s more important than ever that companies challenge themselves to operate responsibly – we know it’s what our guests, owners, colleagues, investors and suppliers rightly expect. Switching to larger-size amenities across more than 5,600 hotels around the world is a big step in the right direction and will allow us to significantly reduce our waste footprint and environmental impact as we make the change.

We’ve already made great strides in this area, with almost a third of our estate already adopting the change and we’re proud to lead our industry by making this a brand standard for every single IHG hotel. We’re passionate about sustainability and we’ll continue to explore ways to make a positive difference to the environment and our local communities.”

This move follows IHG committing to removing plastic straws from their properties by the end of 2019, which is something we’ve seen at a lot of companies.

IHG notes that many of their brands already offer bulk-size toiletries, and they’re well received by guests:

  • Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas offers bathroom products in refillable ceramic dispensers across its entire luxury estate, whilst Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants is already moving to larger-size amenities
  • IHG’s voco Hotels, EVEN Hotels, and avid hotels brands have all offered bulk-size amenities since launch, working closely with suppliers to offer dispensers and products that retain a quality feel
  • More than 1,000 Holiday Inn Express hotels in the Americas have already been implementing the change, alongside a number of Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites properties in the region

My take on bulk-size toiletries

I have to be honest, this is an area where I’ve evolved over time. In general I’ve not been a fan of hotel groups switching to bulk-size amenities, since it seemed to me mostly like a cost cutting measure.

While I do think it cuts cost, the reality is that it’s also the right thing to do. Toiletry miniatures are so wasteful and unnecessary, even if they are something that some people love about hotels.

So while I’m in favor of this nowadays, I do have a few hopes for IHG (and any other hotel brand that chooses to go this direction):

  • Please don’t introduce worse toiletries just because the labeling might not be as obvious
  • Please make sure housekeepers clean the containers properly
  • Please make sure the containers work correctly, which I’ve found to be a major issue (like a pump being broken)

Bottom line

IHG is the first global hotel group to announce that they’re eliminating miniature toiletries globally, though I’d be willing to bet that the competition will follow shortly (Marriott has just announced they will), and before you know it, single use toiletries will be a thing of the past.

I know some people will miss taking home some toiletries from some of the better brands out there, but I also can’t blame IHG for this. It’s the right move, ultimately.

What do you make of IHG eliminating miniature toiletries globally?

  1. This is nothing more than cost cutting. Hotel chains are so willing to cut to save the planet but I’ve yet to hear a single initiative to invest money to reduce carbon footprint. For example, why not install solar panels on hotel roofs globally? Or upgrade energy inefficient heating and cooling systems. Or, spend the extra money and purchase the single use toiletires in plant based environmentally friendly packaging. Theres no “investment” just reduction. Don’t be fooled.

  2. I carry those miniatures in my kit, they were great (the best miniature ones I had was from Park Hyatt in Seoul, South Korea, and the brand was Aesop, if I remembered correctly)

  3. Makes sense. Reduces the waste. People often take them home even if these are often so cheap that they won’t even use. In my case for instance I bring my own. So yes, it’s a good idea and makes totally sense.

  4. Good on IHG. And so what if it will save companies money. They are so wasteful.
    If you’re in the awards/points/miles game, you’ve got too many of these containers anyway.
    If you’re weirded out using the hotel’s product from a big container, just bring yours from home.

  5. Although it is likely just a cost cutting measure, drive solely by desire to maximize profits and not environmental reasons, the world needs to cut it’s unhealthy obsession with single-use plastics, which are devastating the world’s oceans and marine life. So I support the measure, even if IHG isn’t being completely honest as to its reason for the change.

  6. Such a great move! Hopefully all the others will follow. So much of this plastic ending in rivers and ocean. Especially in Asian countries such as Philippines, Thailand and Indonesia.

  7. While I like this, it is 100% about cutting costs. They’ll create more waste when it saves them money as well just look at hotels that move away from traditional room service(Marriott Fresh Bites) which actually creates more waste but is a lower cost to them. I’ve tried calling them out on this but don’t have the clout to do so.

    I applaud this move even though I don’t stay at IHG properties often and I think the trend will continue but we need to push hotels to create less waste all over their properties not just when it benefits them financially.

  8. They could as well remove beds across all brands. Sleeping on the floor is healthier according to some. Remember to gradually raise prices after these enhancements.

  9. I wonder if they will get away with this cost cutting measure in Asia. Asians don’t care about greenwashing.

    Personally, I don’t use these gallon-size shampoo containers after I read a blog about a guy who used to urinate into these containers as a teen because, well, apparently that’s what teens do.

  10. Amans usually serve their shampoos and body wash in artisan ceramic bottles. I love the look and feel of the bottles not to mention custom scent for each properties. Somehow I’m pretty sure IHG won’t be doing anything close to that. Maybe plastic pumps mounted on shower stall walls? Better make sure those are hard to open…. otherwise it’s not too hygienic.

  11. @ Kevin Make sure you don’t watch the refilling process of those wall-mounted pumps around your mealtime. Hard to open, sure!

  12. This is a good move that all hotels should do. Small plastic bottles are just not necessary and are so wasteful. Refillable larger bottles are the way to go, hopefully these won’t be plastic either! As Lucky says, the key is that the products are good quality and the bottles kept clean and filled at all times!

  13. This makes sense for the budget brands in IHG, but I have a feeling they’ll walk it back at Intercontinental hotels.

  14. I do not trust these bulk containers. I have never tried to open one but they look like they could be opened very easily. Thus hooligans could put something in them. Even disgruntled housekeeping employee. Now it is just one more thing I have to carry with me.

  15. Nope – not for me. Love the small bottles as they’re great to take with you when you’re perhaps staying at a slightly less “glamorous” locale…. what’s next? Shared big bars of soap? (Or better still a “soap on a rope”?)

  16. The bulk bottles are disgusting, if for nothing more than no one has any idea what the previous guests have done to or umm, in, them – teenagers or not.

    If this were about the environment and not cost cutting, housekeeping staff could be instructed to recycle the mini bottles, just like airlines (at least Delta, with which I’m familiar) does with bottles and cans aboard. Companies, especially hotels, really do exploit this green craze and play their customers for idiots to save costs. Amazing that foregoing maid service, reusing towels, using semen-filled bulk shampoo bottles, reduced flow shower heads, range-limited HVAC temps and so few lights one can barely work in a hotel room are all critical to saving the environment but magically save the company money. But to the point above, they can’t instal solar panels, offer electric (instead of gas or diesel) airport shuttles, have green, landscaped roofs or buy “green”energy off the grid because, well, those things costs money.

    Really, people need to react more harshly to this heavy handed nonsense. I realize some perfectly reasonable folks disagree with me and appreciate these steps, and that’s wonderful – a hotel’s response should be to give their guests a choice in the matter.

  17. Intercontinental service has been operating as a low cost carrier equivalent for a few years now.
    Along with Crowne Plaza they were once my favourite chain hotels, but now they have really become a nickel and dime chain even for members who book direct.

  18. There are many other hotels to choose from who still cater to their customers, not their bottom line.

  19. If the hotels really cared about the environment, they’d use corn-based plastic lookalike for the mini bottles. They’re 100% biodegradable and customers wouldn’t notice any change.

    The difference, of course is that it would add around $.03 per bottle to switch from plastic to corn-based plastic lookalike. So NEVER believe the hotels when they claim any move they make is for the environment instead of saving a few pennies!

  20. I don’t stay with them but I will stop staying as the other brands as they inevitably follow suit and then switch to B&Bs. You know, we could really save Obama or Pelosi (er…I mean the earth) if we remove the beds, TVs and furniture from the rooms too. That would probably be enough to keep this year’s rate and resort fee increases to 10%.

  21. Honnestly, I carry my own products most of the time. Hotel toiletries are nasty for the most part even at high end properties.

    Also, it’s not true that plant based bottles have zero impact on the environment. You are still using lots of resources to produce, ship, trash the bottles…bulk is clearly the better solution for the environment.

  22. I support this move. I used to always take these miniatures with the assumption that I would use them at home eventually or for houseguests. What ended up happening is every few years I would just chuck them all out. They’re nice to have, but I can totally live without them and happy that it cuts down on waste. Considering the crisis in recycling where the majority of items put in your blue bin just get thrown out (especially plastics), I think this makes sense.

  23. Lucky,
    I am glad you think this is the right direction, and I agree with you 100%.
    Unfortunately it looks like Gary from VFTW is not able to understand the environmental impact behind plastic bottles as he wrote a post that he thinks IHG’s decision is awful…hopefully one day he will understand.
    I applaud IHG for making the right decision for the future.

  24. Echoing the sentiments of some of the more insightful comments here, the ultimate goal of this move is simply to cut costs. In doing so, the overall product will be degraded. That’s to begin with. And, how badly do you really want to be using amenities that have been treated to God-knows-how-many other guests? Are they full of bacteria? Have they been tampered with? All reasonable questions.

    And for those of you cheering “yay for the planet!”, sorry to pop your bubble but this will do nothing for the planet. Nor will the folly of phasing out plastic straws. If you want to do something for the planet, start boycotting and protesting nations like India, China, etc. who are the documented sources of the vast majority of filth and plastic waste in the oceans. Those whales aren’t choking on straws from a Burger King in Plano, Texas or from some hotel in Fresno, they are choking from plastic fish nets from Chinese trawlers. Or wholesale garbage dumping that takes place in South Asia and Africa. Go ahead and google it, though I can share first hand knowledge of waste management in such nations.

    In the end, IHG is being cute with this entire move: they get to virtue signal while saving millions. Nothing more.

  25. Good to know.
    If anyone cares about sustainability, they would ban those single-use plastic water bottles that are prolific in society.

  26. IMHO, this is just to reduce costs. Im also very concerned that people will put things into the refillable containers – like NAIR in the shampoo container – just to be “Funny” or other gross things. The housecleaning staff barely have time now to clean a room and often glassware is just wiped down so IMAGINE how much care will go into the dispensers? These are lawsuits waiting to happen. It is a very very bad idea.

  27. Small secure package of liquid almost impossible to tamper with.
    Large refillable dispensers, refilled with what? Easy to tamper with and corrupt the contents.
    So the small containers are plastic. Have they never heard of recyclable plastic.
    Nothing to do with protecting the environment just penny pinching management.

  28. Hotels and other companies are always going to try to cut costs. You live in a capitalist society, this is not a surprise to anyone. Get off your “it’s about cost cutting, nothing more nothing less! I know more than you do!” high horse. Sometimes cost cutting measures are also good for the environment; that’s what you call a win/win.

    I applaud IHG’s move, although I always bring my own soap & shampoo because I don’t like most hotel products. Disgruntled housekeepers can already unscrew the mini bottles and do whatever to them; it’s not like they come with a safety seal. If someone peed directly on my head, when I wash it out with shampoo it’ll have the same ratio of pee-to-shampoo as if someone urinated in the bottle, but either way my head still washes clean. No, I don’t want people tampering with the big bottles, it’s still objectively gross, and I’d be interested to know their strategy for cleaning them, but take a chill pill people.

  29. Good.

    Yes, it also saves costs, but why is that an issue?

    Its like when companies push you towards electronic billing instead of mailing you a bill. Yes, it saves them money – but its real paper that is being reduced.

  30. As someone who is trying to cut plastics in the bathroom in general I applaud this. I’m moving to bar shampoo/conditioner (already told Bumble and Bumble I won’t buy from them until the switch). I’m switching off all plastics I possibly can.

    Global destruction by plastics is real and we can’t let our petty need to be pampered ahead of that.

  31. It is illogical to infer that, because the move saves money, THEREFORE it is not intended to be environmentally friendly.

    And what difference does it make, what the amateur psychiatrists believe the motive to be???? The result of letting people bring their own supplies like grownups, is we save a crapload of material from being disgorged into an already overloaded environment.

  32. The bulk containers remind me of soap dispensers in public rest rooms. Not the vibe I’m looking for in my own room at a hotel.

  33. I worry about adulteration of the bulk containers, as well as bacterial buildup in the products, because you know that they will just keep refilling the containers over the years and maybe wipe down the outside of the bottle occasionally. I will have to make sure to bring more than enough of my own toiletries to cover the duration of the trip, plus any anticipated extension. I rarely use the hotel toiletries except in a pinch, other than the bar soap (which I assume they are also eliminating) to wash my hands.

  34. Long overdue ; the other chains should follow suit. There is not a single compelling reason to use the miniatures.
    I take my own if I’m checking in a bag ( initially led to that habit by the ghastly June Jacobs products used in most Hyatts at the time; now I do it as a matter of course)

  35. Jgio is spot on. They could care less about the environment. It’s all about cost cutting in the name of the environment. Low water pressure, removing bottles, reducing housekeeper expenses, its a bug fraud. Let’s see them install solar panels or invest in more energy efficient commercial equipment. They won’t do it because it won’t cut costs and they can’t advertise it. This is the worst of virtue signaling!

  36. I have longer hair that tangles easily. It takes three of those little conditioner bottles to get enough to get it under control. So I like the dispensers, provided they are properly locked and maintained, because I can actually get enough product out of them and don’t have to negotiate with housekeeping for extras or bring my own shampoo and conditioner.

    And to add to my weirdness, I stayed at a tru last year (late arriving flight followed by long drive the next morning so we went cheap in the name of maybe 10 hours in the room) and liked their lemon sugar liquid hand soap enough to track it down and buy it for my own house.

  37. To everyone stating this is just an attempt to cut costs: Brands like IHG don’t care about the costs. Their hotels are almost all franchises; they don’t care what the individual hotel owners pay. They brand takes their cut regardless.

    In fact, I’d say it’s the opposite–they LOSE money by cutting out these items. The brand dictates what each hotel owner must purchase. They get a kickback from each case a hotel purchases of those tubes of shampoo and lotion. So, less spent on shampoo and lotion means less of a kickback for the brand.

  38. Good for IHG. I couldn’t care less if there reason for doing this is 100% to save money. It still means less plastic being produced and eventually sent to a landfill or incinerator. We are all long overdue from figuring out where we can cut consumption of “stuff” which we really do not need and only further degrades our planet.

  39. As a hotelier working in one of the largest hotel companies in the world I agree with the move while accepting and understanding the concerns and comments of others regarding hygiene. Some sort of mechanism and locks in place that would mean that only hotel employees can open the containers would need to be put in place to eliminate these concerns – at least that’s what I would want & expect should we move in that direction one day.

    On the cost cutting note – it’s not all about that, paper straws cost around 10x more than plastic… yet have been implemented globally by many hotel chains.

  40. @Stogieguy7: You need to watch or read more documentaries and investigative reports to understand the impacts of plastic on the marine species and other lives on earth. Why do humans have the rights to subject other species to death or extinction to serve our indulgences, not basic survival? Why not use our brains and capabilities to make the world a better place than when we found it? The US has less than a quarter of the world population. Yet, it consumes half the world’s resources and produces nearly half of the world’s wastes. We believe that we recycle but we do not. We package them here and export or dump in third world countries because they have no laws and enforcement there after importing our wastes and recycles. We have stringent laws and enforcement as well as high labor costs to make complete and viable recycling process economic viable. Googling may not help if you do not comprehend the content.
    @Daniel from Finland: I am quite certain you are not from Finland. The Finns do not normally talk or think like you. It is shameful that it is the world we live in. However, the majority of those incidences take place here and infect those misdeeds worldwide. Fortunately, I don’t know any teens who engage in such misdeed. Only read or hear in the news. All countries should adopt and enforce the “Two children” policy or a so we can reduce the world population. Also, adults must be licensed to have two kids so they can rear their offspring accordingly so we can all benefit in society. If you cannot afford to raise your kid, financially and socially, do not bring them into the world and impose them on the rest of us.

  41. @Kyle

    Yes it is all about cutting cost. If the property saves money, IHG can charge more when the contract is up. At least hotels are happy that they make more money before the renewal.

    As a hotelier, does it ever occur some guests might put ‘additives’ into the dispensers. Any mature man is born with the ability to conceal additives into ‘white’ shower gel or shampoos. And oh yeah the 10x paper straws cost should offset with a drink price hike.

    As an Eskimo, I pledge to never buy soaps and shampoo ever again. I will bring my Costco bottles for a refill every time I stay with IHG. This is much easier than bringing back dozens of tiny bottle.

  42. @globetrotter: I’m an environmental engineer who has cleaned up contaminated sites all over the world, so I have some idea of what I’m talking about and of the impact that plastics have on wildlife and the environment. Which is why i can confidently tell you that your cheering on of publicity-seeking moves like this is a waste of time. Let me educate you a bit……

    The types of wastes that are being prevented by inconveniencing millions of people with things like paper straws and nasty bulk dispensers will literally not even remove 0.0001% of the waste that ends up in the oceans. Generally, first world countries are not the problem here (not anymore). The real culprits are never protested; go after large developing world countries such as China, India, and much of Africa where they simply dump their waste into rivers to be washed out to sea. Or Asian fishing vessels that each leave strings of hundreds of miles of plastic netting that never degrades onto the seabed. There’s the problem. Not some freaking straws or little shampoo bottles.

    I’ve seen these things first hand.

  43. @Stogieguy7: I think the value of movements like this in the developed world, even though the majority of ocean plastic comes from emerging markets in Asia and Africa, is that the policy leadership has to start from somewhere. Its unlikely to come from countries like India or Indonesia, but if developed countries can start by getting their populations uncomfortable with single-use plastics, then the aim is for that policy/social trend to migrate to the rest of the world. So, I disagree with your assessment that it’s pointless even if the majority of ocean plastic comes from Asia. This is the beginning of a very long-term solution and the point isn’t that plastic straws in and of themselves are the problem, but rather that the human mindset to favour convenience above all else needs to be changed. If we can start by banning plastic straws in Europe, then it’ll move to the U.S., then developed Asia, then developing Asia.

    Also, as you rightly put, by banning plastic straws and grocery bags, it will get Western consumers to think about their consumption choices before the buy, and maybe that will get them to start making different choices that do affect how the global supply chain (which includes Asia) will be operated. For instance, if Western consumers reject single use plastics, than that will get the market to respond with more environmentally friendly solutions. Those solutions can then be adopted by poorer countries.

  44. I hate the IHG change. Now it’s Hilton or Choice Hotels (Comfort Inn, Quality Inn) for me because they still have individual bottles.

    I bring them home and use the shampoo.

    Bulk containers are so AirBnB. If IHG wants to be environmental, then they would discourage travel and encourage Facetime and Skype.

  45. In most of the known world the plastic bottles that are used for hotel toiletries can be recycled and decent hotel chains have a recycling bin in the room. This sort of initiative is like the moral blackmail not to ask to have sheets changed to protect the planet while the real agenda is to save the hotel money.

    Bulk containers are easily contaminated, rarely well maintained and often broken. They will no doubt be filled with a universally cheap product in both Holiday Inn Express and Intercontinentals – the stuff Radisson use which smells like lemon toilet cleaner springs to mind.

    This grandstanding by IHG is misguided and misplaced.

  46. 100% cost cutting move hides under the name of protecting environment.

    The biggest concern is these bulk bottles are impossible to be temper-proof. To those who claim to bring your own – just imagine how much excess weight you need to carry on a trip lasts more than a week.

    If the hotels are out to cut the waste and be environmental friendly, they can switch to the slightly more expensive biodegradable bottles instead. Nope, they wont. They will cut the service to customer in the name of saving the environment and even fool some uninformed people.

  47. @Phil Duncan: The majority of recyclable plastics don’t end up getting recycled, even in the developed world. There’s a huge crisis in recycling right now because China and other developing countries have stopped accepting plastics from the West for recycling. Plastics need to be pristine to be recycled, so most of those little bottles from hotels will just end up in landfill even if the material is technically recyclable.

  48. @Phil Duncan — I agree with you regarding most plastic bottles being recycled, but you lost me with “moral blackmail not to ask to have sheets changed.” Do you change your sheets at home every day or even every 3 days? Who needs their sheets changed every single day or even every other day? The Sheraton I stay at gives me a $5 Starbucks credit (or 500 points) for skipping housekeeping; not only do I not want people in my room when I’m not there, but I don’t get so dirty I need my sheets changed every day, so I’ll gladly take the food and beverage credit.

    @miafll — I carry a full bar of Dove soap with me and that’ll last well over a week. It weighs 4oz and loses weight with every shower. I bring my shampoo in TSA-approved bottles, so again, pretty light weight and lasts over a week. I *can* see people with longer hair using more than I do, though. If you can’t spare the 1/2 pound of soap & shampoo in your luggage and don’t want to use what the hotel provides, buy travel or full size bottles when you get to your destination, especially if you’ll be in the same place for more than a week.

  49. I’m fine with it as long as the quality of the products is good and they don’t try to have a 1-liquid-fits-all-purposes container. I stayed in one hotel where the single product was supposed to be shampoo, conditioner and body wash. I was so fortunate I had stayed the previous night at a hotel whose toiletries I really liked and brought with me.

  50. @Globetrotter. Greetings from Espoo. We’re about 5.5 million here in Finland, so there’s room for lots of different opinions. There are even some crazies in this country who suffer from something they call flight shame. Imagine that!

  51. I personally hate these dispensers I prefer bar soap.
    They will go back to the mini bottles after one or two people get harmed by someone tampering with them.
    For those that think this is a good idea because it reduces waste, look at your own footprint

  52. A broken pump is soon fixed once people tell the hotel staff. Did that at the Kimpton De Witt no issue at all and I was soon replaced.

    Really grates on me when people don’t report issues so they can be repaired / fixed.

    Other things they can do to save money,

    I’m in an IC at the moment. Every day after I’ve come back doing tourist stuff at least the bedside lamp and bathroom lights are on no doubt for hours, if I’ve turned them off when going out again the turndown service has turned them on again.

    Full lights left on in corridors all night when they could be dimmed.

  53. @Matt
    We actually save those little bars from the first hotel we stayed on a trip that usually lasts for a month – we keep the wrapper and re-wrap the little bar for our next stay at a different hotel different city. We do not open another bar at another location until the initial little bar runs its useful life. Such little bar can last for several days.
    Shampoo and conditioner are different story. The TSA approved little bottles do not last long. At least internationally, many countries have abandoned such stupid idea the US still refuses to admit its mistake in banning the liquid.

  54. This will prove to be an expensive change for IHG and others that follow suit. The class action lawyers must be salivating waiting for the first outbreak caused by tampering. This is a safety issue and the penny pinchers are betting their guests lives against the cost savings, plain and simple.

  55. As Dan says I also use bar soap. Liquid soap in the shower doesn’t work for me. I wonder if bar soap will be available on request.

  56. I am amazed that it has taken this long for hotels to move in this direction. The impact on the environment and the waste of the single use bottles is horrific. There are lots of ways to lock the containers, so sanitation shouldn’t be an issue. I agree that the higher end brands should still make a point of using branded products. Morons who want single-use-plastics can either bring their own or buy. There will eventually be taxes on single-use plastics, just like many countries charge for plastic bags. Wake up people – you are killing the planet for our children and grandchildren.

  57. If you believe the containers are properly locked, you are fooling yourself. These hotels had hundreds if not a thousand rooms at a property and probably hundreds of thousands across their network. Do you really believe they will use a unique key that is even remotely secure? Nope they will use some cheap universal lock and the key will be widely available.

    Here is a link a universal key for soap dispensers, though you can probably use a paper clip.
    https://www.amazon. com/Bobrick-24-17-Soap-Dispenser-Key/dp/B002JF1KH6

    What can one do once they open a container? Perhaps:
    Hair dye
    Bodily Fluids
    Induction of Pseudomonas Arogenosa bacteria to your soap dispensers. [1]
    Mayonnaise in your lotion.

    The hotels COULD make these dispensers very secure by using a locks by EVVA MCS, Assa Abloy, or Medco but I doubt it.

    https://www.cleanlink. com/cp/article/Refillable-Soap-Dispensers-Are-A-Haven-For-Bacteria–22011

  58. The top-line hotels nearly always provide premium content and brands in the miniatures, thereby reinforcing the exclusivity of their particular brand.
    Can you really imagine the same high quality product fixed to the wall in pump-action one litre containers? Just doesn’t happen! Perception and reality converge, at the lowest possible level.
    You wouldn’t even wash your dog with some of the rubbish hanging on bathroom walls these days.

  59. Not hygienic!! Don’t want to be sharing a shower gel dispenser that someone else has used. Yuck! They would really need a good sanitizing program.

  60. Yet another shameful case of companies greenwashing to cut costs and destroy the user experience. Disappointing to see so many people who have swallowed the agenda which just slowly degrades our standard of living for the majority our humanity while the spoilt brats ride in their private jets while having the gall to tell us to change our behavior (which has no no impact if ihg responsibly disposes its waste).

  61. This is absolute nonsense. It is cost-cutting gift-wrapped in green platitudes. Bulk shampoo and soap dispensers belong in gyms and hostels, not $400 per night business hotels. I’ll be staying at other properties if this goes into effect at Intercons.

  62. If they directed their savings from eliminating these small toiletries to other environmental initiatives which cost money I would be impressed. Such as installing smart room temperature controls. Or donate the savings to environmental causes. Same with the not changing sheets/towels. A third go to a push to the consumer (points, gift cards), a third to the cleaning staff that lose income from cleaning less and a third to an environmental cause. This way the cynics won’t think the hotel is pocketing all the savings to improve their profitability.

  63. Oh dear oh dear, I’m calling “uncle” on this thread as I’m not sure I am going to be able to “unsee” some of these comments as I step into my next hotel room!!! I just know there is an element of truth in every aspect of this conversation!!!

  64. Chris C –” A broken pump is soon fixed once people tell the hotel staff. Did that at the Kimpton De Witt no issue at all and I was soon replaced.”

    If you are naked and wet from stepping in the shower only to find the soap dispenser doesn’t work, do you dry yourself and get dressed again, or just greet the hotel staff in all your glory?

  65. All this guff about reducing plastic waste is purely media spin. This is simply a cost cutting measure.

  66. This is a great initiative. Yes, IHG will benefit from cost reduction and productivity improvement. Those are major goals for any successful private corporation. So, why all the indignant comments?

    On the flip-side, there is a marked benefit to the environment also, so this is a win-win for the public and for the corporation.

    The biggest problem with society are those who dislike change in fear of the hypothetical. Thankfully such people are few, otherwise we will still be driving a cart with a donkey in the front.

  67. This is penny wise and pound foolish. The plastic reduction is minimal.
    Those bottles of lotions how many of us have some at work? It’s cheap advertising. Many travelers donate the new unused bottles to organizations that help homeless and moms and their kids in emergency shelters.
    Bottom line is it’s their brand and can do what they want. I can also not stay at their brands because I think it’s tacky to use the dispensers

  68. I don’t care if they’re just trying to cut cost at the end of the day, it still means less plastic bottles will be produced and end up in land fills. Humans create too much waste and it’s time to cut back on them. And those of you concerned about hygiene, really? Of all the things that can be dirty and full of germs in a hotel room the dispenser is the last thing you need to worry about.

  69. I stayed at a $1,200/night luxury resort on Anguilla (the Belmond Cap Juluca) and they used very nice ceramic liquid dispensers for their toiletries. For those of you complaining that this concept just won’t work at high-end hotels, go there and take a look for yourself. I thought it looked very elegant and was a nice solution. They containers weren’t enormous, so I got the impression that they were cleaned and re-filled between guests and to ensure that different guests weren’t using the same hence avoiding the risk that someone could do something to the contents. A clever solution to all the paranoia about adulteration that people are complaining about.

    I think a lot of eco-friendly ultra-high end resorts are going to go this way as part of ESG initiatives.

  70. Some of the most wonderful hotels and eco-resorts that I frequent use tasteful toiletry dispensers. Are people really worried about the hygiene around hotel toiletry dispensers yet fine with the other surface they come to contact with at the hotel (or for that matter in a restaurant)? Silly, silly people.

    Glad to see IHG take this initiative to reduce plastic waste. Someone above said that the plastic reduction is minimal – they are completely wrong. Basic volume calculations show that the plastic and energy reduction associated with the multi-part assembly for a typical toiletry bottle are significant. There have been several widely available studies by the plastics conversion industry that prove this quantitatively. In addition, there is a significant reduction in land-fill waste since packaging waste is the most significant source of plastics pollution.

  71. It comes down to this. Some of us like these bottles some don’t. A good compromise is to have both.
    If you are concerned about your carbon footprint don’t travel

  72. It’s pretty simple really: either suck it or sod off. There is no logical reasoning for all this whining. No one is forced to stay at IHG properties.

    Of course – the usual archaic argument of not traveling to reduce the carbon footprint (roll eyes).

  73. The two things I have learnt from this post:

    1. There are a lot of paranoid people, with some concerning and illogical fears, frequenting this blog and,

    2. There are a lot of misers unable to afford soap/shampoo who freeload at hotels.

  74. @Kent is plainly an employee of IHG, lamely spruiking the benefits of this retrograde decision. According to him there are winners all round (yippee!).
    The only losers are the pesky guests who hate this cheapening of their hotel experience. But know needs them, hey?

  75. I agree with Travis. The lack of logic around how waste (whether plastic, paper or whatever) that is disposed responsibly has no practical environmental impact. It starts in the ground and will end up in the ground (landfill).

    Cost cutting in the name of “sustainability” is just a way to instil misery on the ordinary people.

  76. Due to my frequent travelling I stay mostly at the Holiday Inn Express (IHG managed property) which offers great value for money. The majority of the guests are looking to save (because this is what happens when searching for an hotel stay) but still pretend all the perks they can get in a higher ranked hotel.

    I have just stayed a week ago in a 3* facility in London (Dutch owned) and there was a large bath and shampoo bottle. Since the quality of the small disposable bottles is quite less (for all hotels up to three stars) I’d rather bring my own as I usually do and still enjoy paying a competitive amount for my stay and the most important factor for me is a comfortable bed, no noise, safe that can fit a laptop and clean.

    The discussion and disappointment I read in the comments are exaggerated in my opinion.

  77. @Travis

    The two things I have learnt from this post:

    1. There are a lot of paranoid people, with some concerning and illogical fears, frequenting this blog and,
    – I call it lame counter excuse for lame excuse of environmental friendly. Because if you read with out thinking, all hotels are tree huggers. You really believe that??
    You really think people endure what their ancestors have been through or you just think it is used as a get out of jail free card.

    2. There are a lot of misers unable to afford soap/shampoo who freeload at hotels.
    – Who doesn’t like free stuff. By the way, misers by definition can afford they just won’t.

    And is Amazon or Warren Buffet misers?
    They seem to not pay taxes even they make billions every year.

  78. @glenn t – Contrary to your suspicion, I don’t work for or with IHG. I just spot an example of good business, marketing, and social responsibility.

  79. @Eskimo – I am not sure I understand you comment entirely because of the poor mastery of English.

    I don’t believe any corporation necessarily cares about the environment. However, if a corporation takes an action that helps the environment, then that is a positive outcome. I work for a corporation that takes its environmental impact seriously and we are encouraged to be sustainable. This is great marketing, morale boosting and very useful for recruiting the new generation. Thankfully not all corporations are run by conservatives, such as many here. I didn’t realize you feel so strongly about hotel dispensers and how our ancestors have had to suffer the peril of using them – lmfao.

    Thank you for agreeing to my sarcasm on misers. It is pathetic and frankly embarrassing that people do so.

    Amazon is a corporation – they are exempt from taxes so long as they can exhibit reinvestment of capital earnings. It’s not quite so simple as layman, such as you, put it.

    Warren Buffet is an individual and he does pay taxes. Where exactly do you find your sources for information?

  80. Purely cost-cutting. Take a look at how Marriott’s been doing this. The bulk bottles aren’t terribly large, only holding about 3 mini bottles’ worth of product. To make matters worse, their bulk bottles aren’t refillable (probably a plus) BUT that also means you’re throwing out the pump mechanism. I’m willing to bet the amount of plastic involved with these is more than the mini-bottles.

    And yes, they’re often not maintained. I’ve had a few times where the bulk bottles were empty. Making sure the bulk bottles are full is part of my check-in inspection, along with checking for bed bugs.

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