COVID-19 has vastly changed the way travellers think about travel. Hoteliers should prepare themselves for these changes. Read our article on Why Should Hotels Prepare for Digital Transformation During a Crisis.
Many new norms for hotels are emerging because of COVID-19. As a result, the first steps to preparing your hotel for the new norms is to know what these new norms are. Only then can you as a hotelier prioritise which of these new norms apply to your hotel and formulate a plan to address it.
Here are 3 new emerging norms that hotels should take note of.
1. Hotel Hygiene Standards
Hygiene standards are the most talked topic for hotels today. Keeping your hotel clean is essential for staying in business. Your guests want a clean and safe place to stay during their holiday. Therefore, creating a health and safety checklist would be the first steps to creating a clean and safe hotel environment.
Getting hygiene certified will help your hotel create more confidence for travellers to stay with you. As a result, many countries have rolled out initiatives in collaboration with government agencies and health boards for hotels can get hygiene certified.
Here are some such hygiene certifications:
- Singapore: SG Clean by Singapore Tourism Board (STB)
- Indonesia, Philippines & Vietnam: HygienePass by RedDoorz
- Malaysia: Clean and Safe by Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH)
- Thailand: Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration: SHA
2. Hotel Booking Patterns
With border restrictions and decreased confidence of travellers, hotels should re-evaluate their market segments. Therefore, hotels should look at exploring new market segments or rethinking existing market segments. If your hotel relies mainly on travellers coming from far countries, it could be wise to look at potential travellers within the region instead.
Assurance is now a big part of the decision making process for any traveller. Therefore, having a more flexible cancellation policy would create peace of mind for travellers thinking of making a booking at your hotel.
It is time to get creative and create attractive stay packages. This allows you to drive occupancy and to set your hotel apart from the rest with these unique packages. For example, creating stay packages which are health-centric or focused on social distancing.
3. Guest Engagement
Social distancing is a new norm and it will be with us for a while even after COVID-19 has passed. Your guests would prefer to have a contact-less guest experience as much as possible. Guests do not want to be waiting in line to check-in and more would opt for self check-in if possible.
The traditional behaviour of going to the front office or concierge desk to get information will dramatically decrease. Therefore moving forward, your guests would prefer to go online to find information about your hotel’s facilities, experiences, promotions, etc.