In the past 2 years, the pandemic has spurred a huge increase in reliance on technology, causing new hospitality trends to emerge and develop. What does this mean for hotels this year and beyond?
For now, it’s clear that the pandemic will continue to influence guest preferences, booking habits, and trends with technology at the forefront.
Taking note and acting on the latest hotel technology trends will help hoteliers attract their target audience and stay ahead of the competition. Here are the top 6 hospitality technology trends hoteliers and lodging venues should prepare for.
Digitalizing the Guest Experience
What if when guests arrived at your property after a long journey, they didn’t have to stand in a queue to check-in or wait to speak to a member of staff? Well, that’s now becoming the expectation. The digitalization of the guest experience is one of the most notable hotel technology trends for 2022.
Today, there are apps available that will allow you to set up contactless, self-service processes. These apps digitalize the check-in experience by enabling guests to upload required documentation (such as their ID or passport) before arrival, so they can go directly to their rooms and skip the line.
Of course, no one wants the human aspect of hospitality to be completely removed, but guests now expect some parts of travel to include digital integration and a seamless experience. It’s important to balance the human touch with the efficiency of self-service solutions.
The automation of manual tasks benefits your business, too. It addresses the current labor crisis by cutting out unnecessary work, optimizes front office tasks and frees up time for staff to complete more essential tasks and become more available to attend to guests for a personalized experience.
Keyless entry has become a lot more commonplace in recent years, and if you don’t currently offer this feature, now could be the time to start.
This cost-effective, time-saving technology usually works by sending an access code to guests’ mobile devices after self-service check-in is completed. It’s encrypted, expires after check-out, and is registered to the guest’s phone number for safe and secure access.
With keyless entry, guests don’t have to wait to get their physical key, and it frees up time for staff. Plus, it limits contact from person to person, a desirable experience in today’s post-pandemic world.
Smartphones are a part of our everyday lives and the majority of us will rely on our smartphones when we travel.
With that in mind, hotels should focus on optimizing the digital experience for travelers with a mobile concierge. This technology helps provide a seamless and unique travel experience for guests.
HelloHere is one notable option in mobile concierge technology. With it, guests can instantly access information about the property’s facilities and house rules, see an overview of the local area, and explore local recommendations.
Properties of all types and sizes can even offer contactless payment processing through smartphones as well. They can also engage guests in the lead-up to their trip by sending them updates and important information through guest messaging.
Revenue Management Tools
A side-effect of the pandemic is unpredictability. Unpredictable demand is an unwelcome travel trend that is deeply affecting the hospitality industry at the moment.
With travel restrictions changing at a moment’s notice, demand at your hotel can also quickly and drastically change.
To really maximize revenue and stay ahead of the competition during these uncertain times, you can use revenue management technology to access real-time data and insights.
An effective revenue management software will automatically alert you when competitors in your local market change their prices and it will notify you to adjust your rates during both busy and quiet periods in order to maximize the occupancy rate.
As AI becomes more available and adopted, the use of 24-hour chatbots will also increase.
Chatbots can be used as the first contact for website inquiries and help with online bookings. They have been a huge success for some hotels. For example, properties using Trilyo’s AI chatbot technology saw a 37% increase in direct bookings.
In addition to helping with bookings and inquiries, chatbots can act as a 24-hour customer service desk, giving guests a real-time communication channel while also freeing up your staff’s time.
Chatbots can be used for a number of other day-to-day actions as well, including ordering room service, booking tours and activities, and giving guests information about the local area.
Smart Energy Technology
Sustainability is a trending topic all over the world, and rightly so. People are more aware than ever that climate change can cause natural disasters.
Upgrading to smart energy technology can make a difference in both your environmental impact and operational costs. There are a number of things you can do to make the most of energy-saving technology.
Smart energy technology can be automated to change the temperature of guest rooms throughout the day in order to save energy. For example, it can be programmed to turn off the air conditioner during cooler times of the day.
You can also use automated lights with movement sensors to reduce electricity usage by up to 30%, as well as use energy-efficient light bulbs. To save water, you can start a towel reuse program and use lower-pressure showerheads.
In 2022, the pandemic remains a driving factor for hotel technology and marketing trends. As guests’ needs and expectations shift, hoteliers will have to learn to adapt and adopt new technologies to keep up with industry trends and stay ahead of competitors.