Making a good first impression is important for any hotel. That’s why it’s important to make sure one of the first physical interactions your guests have with your hotel is a smooth one. Here are a few tips to simplify the hotel check-in process for customers and start their stay on the right foot.
1. Allow for remote check-in
Travelers love options. They also love technology. And both of these things certainly extend to the hotel check-in process.
One of the ways to incorporate technology into the hotel check-in process is to allow for remote check-in. This enables your property to leave the check-in process to the guest. Remote check-in can be web-based or through a dedicated mobile app. Best of all, it allows guests to browse and book their room of choice.
To entice loyalty club members, why not use it as a form of reward to allow them to bypass reception? You could go a step further and have the app double up as a smart room key, or to activate an RFID key card that the customers could pick up when they get to the lobby.
A hotel check-in app is more than just a tool to keep up appearances. You can use it as a casual marketing tool, letting guests learn more about your hotel, serving them exclusive offers, and even upselling other amenities during their stay.
2. Make check-in times more flexible
It’s a well-known fact that guests loathe traditional check-in times. While a good deal of arrivals and destinations at major international airports occur around midday, the traditional 3 p.m. check-in and noon check-out
While a good deal of arrivals and destinations at major international airports occur around midday, the traditional 3 p.m. check-in and noon check-out doesn’t reflect the reality on the ground. There are plenty of long-haul flights that arrive in the wee morning hours, with scores of departures happening late in the evening.
The last thing people want to endure after a red-eye flight is the annoyance of check-in, and if you could eliminate this for them, they will love you for it. And sing your praises, potentially via online hotel reviews.
The modern guest cherishes efficiency. And hotel check-in times should reflect this. Smart hoteliers are recognizing the change in behavior, such as Standard Hotels, and many chains are responding by launching a check-in-anytime program.
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3. Allow guests to pay for early/ late check-in
The hotel industry is yet to get over the typical 3.00 p.m. check-in time. So why not allow them the extra wiggle room? For a small added charge, you can give your customers the leeway to check in as early or as late as their schedules allow.
This is slowly becoming a trend, and not just within the smaller property space. Well-known brands like Hilton, Marriott, and the Intercontinental Hotels Group are offering this perk. It’s another great way to generate ancillary revenue for your property.
4. Add check-in kiosks in the lobby
With automation technology becoming more advanced, hotel brands are taking advantage. Many chains are check-in kiosks to make their check-in process more efficient than ever.
The benefit of these self-service check-in kiosks is two-fold. It allows customers to bypass the line while cutting labor costs at the same time.
Ideally, kiosks are located in the lobby. And the technology makes it possible for guests to do more than just complete their own hotel check-in. The kiosk should empower them to also review their reservation, program their room keys, and make any necessary edits without the need for hotel staff to assist them.
By incorporating these tips into your hotel check-in process, your guests will no longer need to line up at the reception desk and you’ll make a stellar first impression.
Has your property mastered hotel check-in? Let us in on your check-in pro tips by leaving a comment or by joining us on Twitter.