The role of renewable energy in the hotel competitiveness
Hotel competitiveness is influenced by several factors, including location, price and physical environment. Despite the fact, that these factors are closely related to the energy consumption of the hotels, researchers have not investigated the relationship between renewable energy and hotel competitiveness so far. It has already been stated, that if a property is located in a low energy region, then it is more expensive to obtain energy. This fact is reflected as a conclusion in the prices of the services offered.
If a hotel uses the forms of alternative energy, high-tech solar panels, cells or wind turbines, it is usually visible for the visitors. The conscious use of the alternative energy as a competitive factor until today has only occurred in the case of green hotels, which strive for energy efficiency as a form of commitment to sustainability. Renewable energy can enhance hotel competitiveness along several factors: firstly, – the high cost of investment not taken into account – these are long-term savings, secondly, it can be regarded as a useful element which is part of the marketing communication, representing commitment to sustainable growth, and thirdly, it is a factor with a strengthening effect on the physical environment and the design of the hotel.
In the research we aimed to demonstrate how the hotels in Hungary use renewable energy opportunities and how it is reflected on their websites. We also investigated how the effort for the use of renewable energy is related to the known factors of competitiveness in the Hungarian hotel industry.