Technology has become an integral part of our society and various industries are competing to keep up with cutting edge technological advancements to provide a best-in-class customer experience.
Typical is the luxury hotel industry which is entirely dependent on the experience their customers have before, during and after their visit.
Hotel technology trends can significantly improve guests’ visits, increase comfort and optimise check in and check out procedures; and overall decrease the effort required to enjoy the emotional benefits provided by the hotel.
Not only can luxury hotels provide an effortless customer experience, but they can also significantly look at reducing overhead long-term costs by investing in technology that is here to stay.
One such example would be reducing plastic cards to check in to rooms by giving check in access to customers on their smart phones with a dedicated hotel application.
Let’s look at some of these technologies that can help your luxury hotel to improve service and be a step ahead of your competition.
1. Mobile Keys
With so much to take in hand these days, mobile-phones, car keys, a mask, wallet, laptop, earphones and much more, it is natural to often forget certain things or to misplace others.
As a luxury hotel, when you issue a plastic key card to a guest, you’re also giving them an additional responsibility to remember and carry the key every time they leave the room.
Hotels these days are investing in room locks that are NFC enabled and can be unlocked with the customers mobile phone with a simple application.
After all, who forgets to carry their phone with them these days?
Not only will this feature unburden guests of the pressure of remembering to keep the room key safe, but as a hotelier you can save on costs on ordering these key cards and maintaining them.
For the customers that permit, you can also collect necessary information like their email address and phone numbers through the application for further communication.
2. Smart Room Technology
Imagine your guests have been out all day long, exploring and strolling through the streets of the city, and they wished that they had a relaxing hot bath prepared before they reached their hotel room.
Well, when there’s technology that can provide smart homes, why not introduce this to your hotel rooms where the guests can set the temperature of their rooms before their arrive and prepare a defined temperature bath for themselves through the hotel’s application pre-downloaded on their mobile phones.
This way you can provide your guests with a personalised experience that will want them to come back to your hotel over again.
3. OTT’s and Smart Television
While some hotel experiences should be away from the routine of our daily lives of ‘Netflix and Chill’, some guests prefer the wholesome experience of snuggling in to the cosy and comfortable beds of the hotel room and binge watch their favorite shows or listen to music.
Guests often prefer smart televisions in their hotel rooms where they can easily cast from their smart phones or watch on OTT applications pre-installed on the television.
4. Hotel Virtual Reality Tours
Luxury hotels are now investing in virtual tours of the property and surroundings available to the guest via tablets in their rooms.
They guide them through the artifacts installed in the hotel, give them information on the history of the hotel and also provide information on activities and places to visit around the hotel.
While this reduces the need to have a personal guide for guests to show them around, it also gives the guests a comfort to explore in their own time without following a timetable during their vacation.
5. Contactless Payments
Contactless payments are becoming the new trend with payments possible within seconds through mobile phones and smart watches.
It is faster, safer and more convenient. Customers do not want to be carrying and maintaining cash and cards, more so because of the fear of Covid- 19.
No luxury hotel should fall behind this trend and also considering emailing the receipt to customers rather than offering a paper version.
Even better would be the option for guests to access their own stay history via a hotel loyalty program.
We have mentioned in our previous blogs about the importance of online services provided to guests by luxury hotels.
It is important to be present as and when the guests need assistance.
One way to do this is by providing a chat service via the website that can help answer any questions that the customer might have while booking or pre-arrival to the hotel.
Many such chat bots are in collaboration with Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp which happen to be the top two web-chat applications most smart phone users prefer.
With the increasing trends in technology and developments every year, it is highly important for luxury hotels to keep up with these trends to stay upbeat in the market and ahead of their competition.