Some 'Interesting' Findings in 2012 Lodging Survey

by Glenn Hasek August 15, 2012 05:13

As reported on Green Lodging News, the American Hotel & Lodging Association just released the results of its 2012 Lodging Survey. The survey was funded by the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation and conducted by STR. STR sent the survey to 52,155 U.S. hotel properties and had a 23 percent response rate. I will be writing a commentary in response to the survey later this week but also wanted to briefly touch on what I thought to be some of the more nonsensical survey findings in this blog. I would love to know if you agree or disagree with me about my conclusions. First of all, 20 percent of respondents said they have air purifiers in their guestrooms. I just cannot believe there are that many. Likewise, 34 percent said their properties offer allergy-friendly rooms. Again, I just cannot believe there are thousands of hotels that offer these types of rooms.

I know of just one company that has successfully installed allergy-friendly types of rooms and they definitely have not reached such a high market penetration rate. By the way, how would you define an allergy-friendly room?

According to the survey, about half of the respondents either have or are working toward a green certification. If this is indeed true (I think the number is way high), the certifiers should be jumping up and down for joy but I don’t see that happening.

In regard to having a linen/towel reuse program, the survey says 67 percent had them in 2008, 88 percent in 2010, and then back down to 76 percent this year. Could there really have been such a swing from year to year? I doubt it.

Similarly, the survey says liquid soap dispensers were used by 6 percent of respondents in 2006, 22 percent in 2008, 6 percent in 2010, and 6 percent this year. What in the world happened in 2008? There was an explosion in interest in dispensers all of a sudden and then just as quickly the interest disappeared? That just does not make sense.

I realize how questions are posed has a lot to do with how questions are answered but it seems like the questions were worded well. Is it just that hoteliers have a tendency to fudge the truth? Or, is a changing sample of respondents from year to year enough to impact results? Your thoughts?


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About Me

Glenn Hasek is the publisher and editor of Green Lodging News. He has more than 20 years of experience writing about the lodging industry. He can be reached at or by phone at (813) 510-3868.