Technology Redefining Hotel Staying Experience
In recent years, several companies are trying to replace the plastic smart cards that are used as hotel key cards for entry in a room. The most popular one in the market is the use of your everyday smartphone.
A gift for anti-social people
Did you know that the hospitality industry is also moving towards a human-free experience where you go straight to your room without ever having to stop at the front desk? Yes, it is happening.
There are many hotels which are offering web check-in service. There are some countries where international travellers are not required to show passport during their check-in. So, what do they do? They simply log in to the hotel application, complete online check-in, download the key to the room on their smartphone and off they go straight to their rooms.
You must be wondering how the host is in touch with the guest, right? The application allows chat feature where you can raise a ticket to complain, order a meal, select housekeeping service and anything & everything that you ask the manager of the hotel.
The tide is turning
If you are wondering that I am just saying whatever I please, then you need to see the results of the recent survey by the American Hotel & Lodging Association. According to the 2018 Lodging Survey (available here) by AHLA, the use of mobile devices as room keys rose from 6% in 2016 to 17% in 2018. That is some serious growth.
Not only that, but they also found that the option of device check-in or online check-in is in demand and is in trend; especially in mid-price hotels and high-priced hotels. The use of mobile applications and smartphones for hotel services was 35% in 2016 which has risen to 40% in 2018.
How does RFID play a role in all this?
Many moons ago when the humans did not know the wonders of technology, an ancient technology called Radio Frequency Identification was discovered in the pyramids of Egypt. This technology was thought to be the nectar of gods, so the common folks were kept away from it.
Just kidding, man. When RFID was developed, it was expensive. However, over the years, as technology developed, it is now more easily accessible than ever. Hospitality industry soon became best friends with RFID. Now, I told you above that hotel key entry is being overthrown by smartphones. But, what I didn’t tell you was that the mother of this technology is RFID.
Application of RFID in Hotel
Every hotel has various classes of the suites depending upon the pay. With every class, there come some extra benefits to the guest, like access to not-so-common areas of the hotels. For example, the hotel offers complimentary access to the spa for the guests of deluxe suites and above. All you need to do is wave the card in front of the scanner and the door will open. The door will not open for those who do not have access to that area.
Also, there are many hotels which offer a member card to their frequent and loyal guests. With that card, you can simply swipe in your way inside the hotel and you will be automatically checked-in. You can straight away go to your room without visiting the front desk.
Also, with the help of RFID readers across the hotel premises, the hotel can track your movement throughout the campus. This is widely used by Disney in Disneyland to monitor their guests throughout their hotels, resorts and parks. They use wristbands and smart cards which are RFID embedded. All you have to do is swipe your card everywhere and the cost will be added to your bill which is paid at the time of check-out.
RFID is making inventory management easy
There are several items in a hotel that are used and re-used by the staff. They include bedsheets, comforters, towels, staff uniforms, etc. and hence, have to be cleaned regularly and thoroughly. This inventory is prone to theft by someone, getting lost in the process or there are discrepancies in the bill.
The hotels tag all these items with RFID, which substantially reduces the number of people involved in tracking the inventory and ensure that an adequate supply of clean laundry is always available. Hotels also tag their silverware with RFID so that their theft can be reduced. With RFID wristbands to their employees, the hotels can track the movement of their staff to know where someone at a said point of the day was.
The story, in a nutshell
The takeaway from this lesson on RFID is that the hospitality industry has evolved a lot over the past decade and it is still evolving as technology grows smarter with each passing day. As such a time, using RFID in your hotel to track and monitor various processes saves you a lot of unwanted headaches and improves the guest’s staying experience also. A pocket-friendly smart system that your guest will also love, switch to RFID solution today.