Thursday, May 19, 2016

Hotel Mobile Technology 2016 - Part 3

Hotel Mobile Apps


With the explosion of mobile smartphone use by the traveling public, it is the expectation that customers should be able to view and book their hotel stays from their mobile devices. The user experience should be every bit as seamless for customers on a smartphone or tablet as it is on a desktop computer. But some hotels are utilizing mobile technology to take the guest experience to new heights. Mobile apps give hotels the opportunity to interact with their guests and offer services directly through their devices.

Today’s traveler wants greater control of their hotel guest experience from start to finish and hotel provided mobile apps empower them to do so. With a hotel app downloaded to their smartphone or tablet, customers can select from among commonly variable choices such as, room size and bed type, to customizing the room temperature and even selecting food and drinks for the mini-bar; all in advance of their stay if desired from a mobile device armed with an app from the hotel. Guests can even skip the lines at the front desk with mobile check-in.

Hotel apps can also become an extension of the hotel’s concierge services, particularly when the guest is off the property. Whether the guest is out sightseeing or catching a bite to eat off-property, a hotel branded mobile concierge app can be of great assistance to travelers unfamiliar with the local area. Apps can make recommendations based on local experience for everything from local food and drink to entertainment and culture. Additionally, hotel apps can enable guests with mobile devices to order various extra hotel services and amenities, such as spa treatments.

Of course such personalized service and convenience comes at a price to the customer, in the form of personal information disclosures. Consumers can balance the benefits against the risks. Guests don’t mind giving some personal information as long as there is something to be gained for them. As mobile apps have evolved, customers are now much more willing to provide various preferences and even gender data. However, they are inclined to be much more cautious regarding any personal finance and credit card information.

The twenty-first century hotel guest approaches their hotel stay with high expectations. Because of the conveniences offered by technology in our everyday lives, we have built up the anticipation that this will carry over when we travel. Travelers now expect and demand a hotel experience customized to their needs, tastes, and convenience. Mobile technology offers hoteliers an exciting means to meet guest expectations with highly personalized service. Mobile technology does however require a commitment on the part of hotels to invest in their customers through the provision of these technologies.



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