Improving Your Connection With Hotel Guests

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The lifeblood of any hotel’s success includes the guests that stay at such establishments. Unhappy guests can lead to hotels incurring bad reputations, which could cause a variety of problems. Fortunately, however, hotel staff can improve relationships with their guests by employing the following techniques:

 

Personalize The Guest’s Experience

Adding a personal touch can significantly improve a guest’s experience. Individuals who lodge in hotels love to be treated as more than a reservation number. Though it may sound clichéd, hotels that make their guests “feel at home” stand a better chance of forging long-standing relationships with customers. Executing actions like smiling, expressing an attentiveness to a guest’s needs, or knowing their first name might prove memorable in a guest’s eyes.

 

Stand Out From The Competition

The key in any customer service-driven business is to stand apart from competitors. Standing out can be executed through actions including but not limited to, creating a more specialized menu or offering complementary items. To truly understand what special touches might heighten a guest’s interests reach out via a survey or short conversation to get their opinion. 

 

Impress Before Guests Arrive

Many travel experts argue that a hotel’s commitment to guest services begins before the sojourner’s arrival. Hotel staffers are strongly encouraged to maintain close contact with soon-to-be-guests as soon as reservations are made. Once a new guest is confirmed, hotels can enhance the guest experience by sending them any vital information about the hotel. Include a list of opportunities for discounts and packaged deals, as well as assurance that hotel staff will always be available to assist them before, during, and after their stays.

 

Solicit Feedback

Gaining feedback is an integral part of the customer relations process. Hotels are encouraged to offer guests the opportunity to provide input regarding numerous different topics. Moreover, guests should be provided with the opportunity to provide feedback using several mediums, including online and in written, snail mail form.

 

Apply Guest Suggestions

Receiving feedback is a significant first step towards establishing solid guest-hotel relations. Applying the suggestions received illustrates that the hotel is not only listening to the questions, comments, and concerns of the customer but valuing their opinions. Hotels that make changes based on customer feedback can build a lasting relationship with customers. 

 

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5 Technologies Helping Hotels Meet Sustainability Goals

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Sustainability is gaining popularity around the world, as we’re feeling the impact of our energy footprint. We’ve seen developers design and build homes with eco-friendly features like geothermal heating, solar panels, and LED lights. This is true for the hospitality industry as well! Here are five types of technology helping hotels all over meet essential sustainability goals.

 

Sustainable Fitness Equipment – Fitness rooms are an essential part of any hotel as it provides guests with an area to stay active while traveling. But did you know that traditional fitness equipment is a significant energy sucker? Most, if not all of the time, treadmills, ellipticals, and other equipment are kept on even when not being used! A few ways to fix this include purchasing cordless cardio machines, or even sustainable equipment that reduces energy and generates energy. Some of the power produced by these efficient machines can help power anything plugged into the same electrical grid!

LED Lights – Switching your hotel’s lights from compact fluorescent lamps to LED lights is a quick and easy way to reduce your energy footprint. LEDs are significantly more versatile than regular light bulbs, and they last a lot longer. Instead of burning out like standard bulbs, these energy-efficient lights dim slowly over some time and are 90% more efficient in producing light. You’ll use less energy to provide the same amount of lighting for guests.

 

To learn more visit SteveFarzam.org

How Sustainability is Changing Hospitality

Eco-friendly technologies have been on the rise for the better part of 40 years. Businesses are getting on this bandwagon more and more as time passes: in part because the world is finally recognizing the importance of environmental sustainability.

Industries across the board are embracing this cause, and with the conversion to environmental friendliness comes a great deal of changes—specifically for the hospitality industry.

Cost Efficiency

Both BnBs and hotel chains alike are finding that making the switch over to eco-friendly materials, sources, and resources are allowing them to save in the long run. While paying an ethical supplier often costs more upfront, because materials last longer, hotels are saving money on energy and restocking fees. This allows businesses the opportunity to pay their staff more, do necessary remodeling, and even charge their guests less per night of their stay. The use of these savings is up to the individual proprietor, but all options give owners a chance to get ahead of their opponents.

Brand Image

In a world where consumers are bombarded with more than 4,000 advertisements a day, it is crucial to have a brand that sticks out in the customer’s mind. This is especially hard for hotels that are smaller than a traditional Mariott but bigger than a charming local BnB.

One of the best ways to ensure that your brand image stands out in the minds of consumers is to brand yourself as an economically friendly branch—and demonstrate this to your consumers. This demonstration can be done through energy efficient light fixtures, organic breakfast items, and can be explained on the hotel’s website for all those interested.

Being known as a genuinely environmentally friendly place of business is a fantastic way to drum up long-term business.

Government Rewards

Several governments are prepared to offer hotels and BnBs alike incentives for going green. These incentives range from tax breaks to financial grants. These grants can be used specifically to purchase and build green buildings which are specifically designed to use less energy.

Ultimately, the sustainability movement is here to stay, and its changes in the hospitality industry are anything but minor. From government grants to increased competitiveness among rivals, hotels and BnBs have quite a bit to gain from going green.


This article was originally published at SteveFarzam.org

Skip Online Travel Agencies and Book Your Hotel Direct

Travel agencies and discount travel websites are always advertising that they have the best deals. Is that true? Not always. There are many reasons why booking your hotel directly is preferable over using an online travel agency.

Skip booking fees

Travel agencies earn their money from sales commissions paid by the hotel. If you work with the hotel directly, they don’t have to pay those fees. Often, the best deal you can get is by calling the hotel directly and asking if they offer any discounts.

Amenities for Your Special Day

Hotels love to accommodate your special day, but travel agencies aren’t great at communicating details about your stay. If you book with the hotel directly, you can ask if they offer any special amenities for a special occasion like a wedding, birthday, or group event.

Easier to Amend or Change Booking

Online travel agencies are often unable or unwilling to change reservations once they have been made. Since it’s working through a third party, everything takes a bit longer. If you need to make changes or cancel your reservation last minute, booking directly with the hotel is the way to go. You’ll skip the cancellation fees travel agencies often add to reservations.

Special Requests

Are you particular about what floor you stay on or which direction your room faces? Online travel agencies don’t have the option to make special requests in the booking. Work with the hotel directly, and the staff will do their best to accommodate your special requests.

Booking directly with the hotel starts a real relationship with the staff that you can’t get with an online travel agency. Build a good rapport, and you might be able to make even more special requests or find that the staff throws in some extra goodies.

Last Minute Bookings

Because the online travel agencies are a third party, they don’t always have up-to-date records about hotel vacancy. If you need a last minute room, calling the hotel directly is the best way to ensure you find a place to stay. Sometimes hotels will even offer a discount to last minute bookings, to ensure they have the maximum capacity possible. Same day bookings that fill in cancellations can be a great steal.


This article was originally published at SteveFarzam.org

Maximize Your Hotel Stay

The most influential person at a hotel is the person behind the front desk. They hold the keys to the rooms, can turn away guests, and decide whether or not to upgrade certain guests. Wondering how to make the most of a hotel stay? Read on.

Hotels Offer More Than You Realize

While most hotel guests assume their hotels will stock their rooms with basic toiletries, most hotel front desks offer far more than they let on. While all hotels vary, many of them have given guests much more than shampoo and lotion. Many hotel front desks have cufflinks, bow ties, nail files, tampons, umbrellas, phone adapters, and more–upon request, of course.

Getting Into a Room Early is a Rarity

Most hotels try to accommodate their guests whenever possible, however, admitting guest early into their room isn’t typically possible. Hotels with high occupancy often don’t have any available rooms that guests can check into early. Still trying to get in before the reservation? Try to call ahead with the early arrival time, as the hotel staff will likely be able to prioritize cleaning the room if they have advance notice.

Another way to ensure that a room is ready early is to book the room for the night before arrival. This will ensure that the room is ready and waiting.

Ask Politely for Discounts, Perks, or Upgrades

Upgrades, perks, and discounts are never guaranteed, but travelers looking for special treatment should ask politely. While hotel staffers can always say no, the people that work the front desk will typically offer a discount when asked politely. Similarly, it helps to be specific when asking for these perks, as staffers are more likely to grant these types of wishes.

It’s best to ask for these discounts, perks, or upgrades during the initial booking. When asked in advance, hotel staffers will have more time to accommodate the needs and requests of their guests.

Become a Frequent Guest to Enjoy Benefits

Guests that stay in the same hotel regularly will find that they are often treated to benefits. Most hotels have a benefits program that offers perks to regular customers. Moreover, travelers that frequent the same hotel will find that they are usually offered upgrades before anyone else.

There is an art to booking one’s hotel room. By keeping these four tips in mind, hotel guests will be able to maximize their hotel stays.


This article was originally published at SteveFarzam.org

Trends Impacting the Hospitality Industry

Every industry seems to be changing with new trends coming in every year with significant impacts. The hospitality industry is one of the largest industry in the world. Some countries and cities even depend solely on the hospitality industry for their economic progress. However, recent research studies highlight that there are significant trends in the hospitality industry that will have major impacts as discussed below.

  1. Catering to Millennials

The demographic group of individuals between the ages of 18 and 34 is expected to form more than 50 per cent of all travelers and the people who will be the major users of the hospitality industry. The hospitality industry will be required to significantly shift with the aim of incorporating the high-tech adopters who want to get customized products and catering services. They will also play a vital role in marketing the company through social platforms.

  1. The influx of International Visitors

Traveling from one country to another is becoming a norm in recent times. The hospitality industry has to therefore change and become acceptable from individuals from different parts of the world. The language, food, and the setting of the whole hospitality industry have to change so that it can incorporate the needs of all people from different parts of the world. The hospitality industry should also be prepared to handle different culture and languages.

  1. Automation of Services

This trend has already been incorporated in a significant number of high-end hotels around the world. It is expected that a large number of organizations in the hospitality industry will automate most of their services to allow easy payments and booking of rooms and other services. The payment option is also expected to incorporate bitcoin payment system and other forms of cryptocurrencies.

  1. Artificial Intelligence in Customer Services

Artificial intelligence is expected to take the world by storm in the near future. However, this form of advanced technology has already been incorporated by a significant number of leading hospitality organizations in providing various customer services. For example, customers can ask questions about the products and services provided in a particular hotel while getting instantaneous feedback. This will not only enhance customer experience but will also help organizations to attract a large number of customers who are already aware of hotel services.


This article was originally published at SteveFarzam.org

A History of Hotels

While many associate the word “hotel” with that of our modern day dwellings featuring conveniences such as TVs, minibars, spas, and more, hotels have been around for much longer than that. The word “hospitality” is a derivative of “hospice” which loosely means “a place of rest for travelers and pilgrims.” Since the development of early civilizations, hotels have been a part of society – we have seen evidence of hospitable facilities since early biblical times. Travelers all over the world have sought a hospitable place to eat and sleep and while they did not offer the luxurious conveniences that hotels today offer, they were hotels all the same.  

Greeks and Romans

The Greeks first developed thermal baths in various villages that were explicitly designed for rest and recuperation. Sometime later, the Romans built mansions for traveling government officials to provide them with accommodation. They then further developed the Greeks initial thermal bath design and introduced them to England, Switzerland and the Middle East.

Middle Ages

In the Middle Ages, the first establishments included monasteries and abbeys that offered shelter on a regular basis to travelers. Religious orders then built inns, hospices, and hospitals to better cater to travelers. As time went on, inns continued to multiply; however, they did not yet offer meals. These inns only provided basic services, such as the ability to change horses easily.

15th Century France

At the beginning of the 15th century, the law in France required hotels to keep a register. This spread to England, where additional rules were introduced for inns, where more than 600 were registered. The structure was relatively similar across the board – there was often a paved interior court that was accessed through an arched porch with bedrooms located on the two sides of the courtyard, the public restrooms and kitchen were found at the front, and the storehouse and stables at the back.

The Industrial Revolution

In the 1760s, the industrial revolution expedited the development of hotels in mainland Europe, England, and America. These hotels were built with the sole intention of providing accommodation to travelers. The City Hotel, New York’s first hotel, opened in 1792 and the Royal Hotel was built in London at the beginning of the 1800s. Holiday resorts began to spring up and flourish along the Italian and French rivieras. Guest houses popped up in Japan, and government-run bungalows were developed in India.

Throughout the years and through the 20th century, more and more corporations and business organizations took over ownership and management of larger hotels. Courses began being offered to provide basic hotel management training and have further developed and specialized over the years.


This article was originally published at SteveFarzam.org

Things to Ask Your Hotel Concierge

Your hotel concierge holds a wealth of local knowledge that is more often than not, untapped. Not many travelers thing to ask their hotel concierge for much more than restaurant recommendations or directions. A great hotel concierge can assist you with nearly any travel issue you may run into, so you should take advantage of the powers they have to offer. Here are just a few of the things your hotel concierge can do for you.

Recommendations

Outside of restaurant recommendations, your hotel concierge can suggest fitness facilities if the hotel you are staying at does not have one, or lacks the equipment you want. The concierge can more often than not point you to an affiliated hotel with fitness facilities, suggest a good running or hiking trail, or provide you with a list of fitness centers nearby that supply daily or weekly passes. They can also provide you with local service recommendations, such as babysitters, dog walkers, and auto repair shops.

Find You a Ride

During rush hour traffic, when it’s raining, or it’s really late at night, it can seem impossible to find a taxi or an Uber. Often, your hotel concierge can find you a ride in a matter of minutes, just by placing a phone call.

Assist in Celebrations

If you are celebrating a special event, such as a birthday or reunion, or proposing to your partner, your hotel concierge can assist you with the details. Whether it be filling your hotel room with flowers and balloons or coordinating a proposal on the rooftop complete with a photographer, your hotel concierge can help make the organization process seamless.

Job Duties

If you need help with work-related tasks, such as sending items to a printer, your hotel concierge can help. They are able to not only get materials to a printer for you, but can set up courier service, mail packages, and set up a meeting space for you if needed. If you’re in the area for a job interview, they can even help make sure you look your best and book an appointment with a barber or hairdresser, get your clothes pressed, and more.

While you may feel shy about asking the concierge to help you, there’s no need to be. He or she is available to help all guests at the hotel, and they will be more than happy to assist you.


This article was originally published at SteveFarzam.org

Traits of a Great Hospitality Manager

The hospitality industry is a fast-growing sector, but this does not by any means mean that competition is non-existent. Rather, it is quite the opposite. Competition for hospitality management positions is intense, with limited job openings and those that are applying are highly trained individuals.

Hospitality management involves overseeing a variety of departments within a hotel or resort. This often includes the front desk, housekeeping, concierges, spa services, restaurant and room service, conferences, maintenance, budgeting and finance, and guest services. Not only do hospitality managers need to oversee all of these departments, but they must also be able to organize and flawlessly integrate these departments with any other services that are being offered at the hotel. Due to this, great hospitality managers tend to acquire these traits and strengths.

Communication

It is imperative that hospitality managers have excellent communication skills. They need to be able to actively speak to staff and have the staff open up in return. Failure to communicate results in someone dropping the ball, and the customer is going to be the one to pick it up. This is often accompanied by a complaint or a bad review, which is not what anyone wants.

Problem-Solver

When problems arise, guests and staff will be looking toward the manager to offer a solution. This requires the hospitality manager to be able to think on their feet, make decisive decisions, and respond to customers and employees questions and concerns in a sensitive, polite manner. It is also vital for managers to be prepared and anticipate any issues that could arise and have a backup plan in place, especially because this happens almost daily.

Time Management

Since hospitality management involves overseeing so many different departments and requires the ability to integrate them efficiently, hospitality managers require excellent time management skills. Managers need to be organized and abide by a punctual schedule. There are often times when work requires managers to put their personal lives on the back burner and deal with an immediate crisis at any moment, so they must also be flexible and able to adapt to a fast-paced work environment.

Motivation

Working in the hospitality industry is all about making sure the guest feels special and putting them first. This is a team effort, so the hospitality manager must have motivation themselves, but also be an effective team motivator. These individuals need to lead by example and know when they need to roll up their sleeves to help get the job done.


This article was originally published at SteveFarzam.org