The COVID-19 pandemic has had a lasting impact on travel, from the disruption of air travel to staffing shortages in the hospitality industry. The hotel industry is slowly recovering from the losses it sustained during the pandemic, but it is expected to take several more years to fully recover. According to a report from the American Hotel and Lodging Association, while room revenue for this year is expected to surpass 2019 numbers, when adjusted for inflation, revenue per available room may not return to pre-pandemic levels until 2025.
The demand for vacation rentals, such as those offered through Airbnb and VRBO, increased during the peak of the pandemic as travelers preferred the option of renting a private home with more space and the ability to cook their own meals. However, hotels are still trying to attract travelers and offer competitive deals.
Here are some of strategize being used by hotels trying to entice travelers to return:
- Offering promotions and discounts: Many hotels are offering promotions and discounts to encourage travelers to book a stay. These could include discounts on room rates, free nights with a certain number of paid nights, or special packages that include additional amenities or services.
- Enhancing cleanliness and safety measures: In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, hotels are focusing on increasing their cleaning and safety protocols to reassure travelers that they are taking measures to protect their health and well-being.
- Offering contactless check-in and check-out options: To minimize physical contact and reduce the risk of transmission, hotels are offering options for contactless check-in and check-out, such as through a mobile app or kiosk.
- Adding flexible cancellation policies: Many travelers may be hesitant to book a stay if they are unsure of their plans or worried about the potential for future disruptions. To address these concerns, hotels are offering more flexible cancellation policies that allow travelers to change or cancel their reservations without penalty.
- Adding new amenities and services: Hotels are trying to entice travelers by adding new amenities or services to their offerings, such as outdoor spaces for recreation or relaxation, private dining options, or wellness services like yoga or meditation classes.
- Partnering with local businesses: Hotels are partnering with local businesses to offer travelers unique experiences or discounts during their stay. This could include discounts on activities, dining, or transportation.
- Offering loyalty program perks: Hotels with loyalty programs are offering additional perks or rewards to entice travelers to return. These could include room upgrades, free nights, or special access to amenities or services.
- Offering virtual experiences: Hotels are offering virtual experiences or events for travelers to enjoy during their stay, such as cooking classes, guided tours, or entertainment.
- Providing contactless room service: To reduce the risk of transmission, hotels are offering contactless room service options, such as delivery to the door or through a mobile app.
- Adding outdoor spaces: Hotels are adding or enhancing outdoor spaces, such as patios or terraces, to provide travelers with more opportunities to enjoy the outdoors while still practicing social distancing.
- Implementing technology solutions: Hotels are implementing technology solutions to improve the guest experience, such as mobile keys, in-room tablets for ordering room service or requesting amenities, or virtual assistants.
- Offering flexible check-in and check-out times: Hotels are offering more flexible check-in and check-out times to accommodate travelers' schedules and reduce crowding at the front desk.
- Offering customizable options: Hotels are allowing travelers to customize their stay by offering a range of options for amenities and services, such as room types, bedding preferences, and in-room amenities.
- Offering all-inclusive packages: Hotels are offering all-inclusive packages that include all meals, activities, and amenities, which can provide value and convenience for travelers.
- Enhancing the overall guest experience: Hotels are focusing on enhancing the overall guest experience by providing personalized service, going above and beyond to meet travelers' needs, and making sure all aspects of the stay are enjoyable and memorable.
As the world continues to grapple with the effects of the pandemic, hotels are doing their best to entice travelers to return. By offering discounts, implementing enhanced safety protocols, and providing special amenities, hotels are doing their best to make travelers feel safe and comfortable. With these measures in place, travelers can feel confident in their decision to travel again.
Thank you for reading this post, don't forget to subscribe!