With people watching what they spend and giving more thought to vacations, how does this effect the hospitality industry? What improvements or other avenues is the industry trying out?
Hotels are being creative in the ways they attract more customers to their hotels. Increasing value without changing prices is one way to do this. Having more spacious rooms, making sure they’re clean and comfortable, have room size refrigerators and microwaves is one way to go. Making sure the service is friendly, attentive and professional is another. People want to know that their problems are going to be solved quickly and efficiently. Believe it or not, food and beverages in addition to how they were treated are what a lot of guests remember best about where they stayed. The fun, social side can play an important part in keeping guests returning.
A different take on hospitality is activity based travel. There’s adventure traveling where the guest is visiting nearby parks, hiking and nature based activities. Some hotels offer bikes for their guest to use on bike trails that are established in the vicinity of their hotel
Heritage tourism is also a big draw. The history within an area can be celebrated by historical sites, and reenactments. Local fairs, craft shows and flea markets are also fun filled and family orientated. Hotels that are listed by sites such as these can offer family discounts and lower priced tickets to the events.
Some guests enjoy culture on their vacation. Theaters, museums, historical sites all will draw people to stay in your area. Again, there could be package deals and discounted tickets to bring them to the hotel to stay.
Activity based travel is based on thought, feeling and how much fun they’re having during their stay. Anything they can bring the whole family to and enjoy it would be worthwhile to look into to increase business. On the other hand, romantic weekend getaways are also popular for those couples celebrating anniversaries, just wanting to escape for a bit or retired couples who can finally relax and enjoy it. Adding romantic dinners, maybe the theatre or even a couples massage would make a great package.
Also having a spa in the hotel is a great idea. Offering spa treatments, pedicures, and manicures without ever leaving the hotel is a way for the guest to feel pampered and loving it. Another way to step up the game is adding workout rooms, saunas, whirlpools and steam rooms for the executives who need to work off the edge and guests who have a regular exercise routine.
If the guest feels pampered and special, they’ll keep that particular hotel in mind when they pass that way again or make plans for another family vacation. Isn’t that what the hospitality industry is all about?
By Linda Lee Ruzicka
Linda Lee Ruzicka lives in the mountains of Western PA , happily married and with her 8 cats and three dogs. She has been published in Twilight Times, Dark Krypt, Fables, Writing Village, June Cotner anthology, The Grit, Reminisce , the book, Haunted Encounters: Friends and Family. She also does freelances work for Beyond and Hospitalityjobsite. You can read more of her blogs on Hospitalityjobsite blog.