Face-to-face communication has always been an integral part of the hospitality industry. And it seemed like this would never change. However, life is full of surprises, and new technologies never cease to emerge. They certainly affect all areas of our lives, even those least susceptible to innovation.
To deliver perfect guest experiences, hoteliers used to rely both on qualified staff and hotel facilities. However, in the last few years, one can notice the growing popularity of vacation rentals, and the number of renters is only expected to grow up to 893.7 million by 2026. Meaning, that lots of personal space and minimal contact with staff are now considered the “new luxury”.
Obviously, the pandemic contributed to this strong desire to keep distance. And, what is even more astonishing, this desire manifests itself in the increasing trust in technology. According to Metova, today around 86% of guests are more willing to choose hotels that provide contactless self-service features, such as mobile check-in, concierge, and facility reservation services.
This interest in self-service technology is not just a brand new consequence of the pandemic. It began to grow even before its start, and the current crisis has only propelled this tech trend.
In addition, as Generation Z is growing older, hotels are starting to check in thousands of customers with absolutely different values. These guests are accustomed to technology from an early age, and cannot imagine their lives without it. And this means that fully contactless self-service technologies are here to stay.
In this article, we will take a closer look at self-service options in hospitality, tell you how to attract digital nomads, and share top-3 technologies that can be implemented even in a small boutique hotel.
Сontactless self-service technology: a threat to hospitality?
Before delving into the details of this question, let’s clarify the notion of “contactless self-service technology”.
Self-service technology helps customers get anything they need without the help of personnel. The most common example is an ATM: any credit card holder can withdraw money without having to communicate with bank employees.
In restaurants, this technology allows customers to reserve a table and pay for a meal in one tap. Speaking about hotels, the first self-service technology that comes to mind is a check-in kiosk. But since the Internet is in a way a self-service technology, booking platforms, and online payments belong to this category as well.Now let’s take a look at the “contactless” part of the customer experience. For instance, contactless check-in allows a guest to check into a hotel without the need to interact with staff or touch any items, such as pens and registration forms.
It may seem that it is impossible to provide a completely contactless guest experience. In fact, your guests just need to have a smartphone for that. HoteFriend can offer a fully contactless self-service ecosystem for your hotel.
To many, the introduction of self-service technology looks like killing the very essence of hospitality. However, providing customers with self-service options does not mean leaving them unattended. Turns out, it can be highly beneficial for both parties, as the hotel gains an increased speed of operations, and customers get more control over their stay.</…….