Attempting to forge ahead in many industries has proven difficult in a world full of new business ways. From small mom-and-pop outfits to billion-dollar corporations, all types of businesses have been forced to restructure their entire operation. It’s taken drastic changes and entire overhauls for many companies to continue to keep their doors open.
While many industries have changed because of mandates or closures, the hotel industry is now more focused on accommodating guests and keeping them as safe as possible. The travel and tourism industry was one of the hardest hit during the pandemic and was all but shut down for nearly a year.
Although many of the restrictions and mandates have been relaxed, contactless hospitality has proven to be a huge selling point for a new contactless world. Things like touchless hotel check-in and other mobile technology in the hospitality industry have created a new way to get travelers excited about staying in hotels again.
There are even cool features like contactless room service for organizations that are going all out with the theme of guest safety. Many business owners would look at things like this as an inconvenience. However, that’s what separates a successful business owner from the rest of the pack – where one sees roadblocks; another sees opportunity.
That’s exactly what hotels that have bounced back have done. The misfortune of social distancing has turned into an almost fully contactless hotel of the future. And as of now, it seems that contactless hospitality is leading the way in the industry.
In this article, we’ll look at what some of the most successful organizations have done to bob and weave against the challenges presented with the pandemic and how they’ve moved forward after lockdown.
The Importance of the Guest Experience in the Hotel Industry
This breaks down the importance of the guest experience in the hotel industry. As of late, guests who feel the safest are the happiest. Nobody wants to spend a vacation counting how many chances they’ve had to get sick. The more organizations can build on the contactless theme, the more chances to improve the guest experience.
Honestly, there’s no limit to the number of contactless elements that organizations can implement into their daily operations. From the minor tweaks to the biggest overhauls, anything leading to higher feelings of safety and comfort should be considered.
Let’s take a look at what’s been most widely implemented to give you some ideas of possible changes you can make to your business model to improve the guest experience.
Hotels With Contactless Check-In
When guests initially arrive at a hotel or resort, they can check-in using one of several methods instead of being greeted by an individual at a front desk. How does contactless check-in work?
Some organizations have added kiosks to the front of their hotels that allow guests to check-in here. However, we think the second method of contactless check-in is a much cooler idea.
Many owners have implemented a form of contactless check-in that allows guests to let management know they’ve arrived through an app – but that’s not even the cool part. A mobile key is generated in many cases that are scanned from your phone to the door so you can let yourself into the room.
When you’re going to do it, you might as well do it right.
When we’re talking about amenities, there are new apps out that provide certain booking options for guests. For example, some of these apps allow guests to book seats at the pool and even the beach.
Hotels that have spas even allow guests to book their spa appointment via an app on their smartphones. This allows travelers to maintain control over appointment times and recreation elements of their trip without having to cross social distancing lines.
Enhancing the Customer Experience
Guests are now able to control nearly every function of their hotel stay with a few taps of their phones. Things like room preferences can be communicated, additional nights may be added, and guests can even request late checkouts or early check-ins.
Because of groundbreaking technology and certain metric and data tracking, hotels can leverage data associated with guests to take loyalty and rewards to a new level. Based on past habits, they can encourage certain actions by offering coupons. For example, they can provide guests with 15% discounts by taking advantage of a dine-in experience or another specific action.
If data has proven in the past that they prefer a certain type of food when they order from the hotel kitchen, rewards programs can offer them free meals consisting of their favorite dishes in exchange for loyalty points.
Mobile Room Service and Requests
We must say that contactless room service and other elements of contactless systems are pretty impressive. Guests can contact the kitchen, order their food directly, and make other requests for supplies to their rooms. Instead of having to deal with someone at the door delivering a meal or dropping off towels, items are placed at the door, and customers can be notified with a knock or an alert on their phones when everything arrives.
Touchless Room Controls
Perhaps the most impressive element of all new contactless changes seems to take things over the top. Many hospitality organizations are offering completely touchless room controls to give guests the highest amounts of reassurance. Voice-activated thermostats and remotes allow guests to control everything in the room without laying a finger on anything. Some hotels take this technology all the way to the elevators. These areas are fitted with buttons that respond to panels on the floor you can kick with your leg to choose your destination. Now that’s contactless hospitality!
Okay, so you might not see this one in many hotels, but we promise you they exist. Certain hotels are using robots to deliver towels and other items to guest rooms. These dramatically reduce contact with staff and provide the ultimate in social distancing.
There’s really no limit to the number of ways hotels can choose to be contactless. Safety is the number one priority, and all of these new methods certainly provide a much higher level of guest satisfaction.
If you’re interested in boosting the contactless elements of your property, Hotelogix Mobile PMS provides your staff with ways to communicate with guests and accommodate them without actually making face-to-face contact. Special requests and even text conversations in real-time ensure your guests are always comfortable without risking their health.
Are you ready to take your hotel to the next level? Contact Hotelogix and find out what we can do for your organization.