By Brooke van Dyk

Seamless technological integration is a cornerstone of the modern hotel guest experience. Hotels across the globe are revolutionizing their guest experience with emergent and cutting-edge technology to give guests the best service possible. From AI to Smart Rooms, guests can enjoy their vacation in a technological wonderland. This new technology is designed to improve the guest experience and modernize hotel amenities.  While each hotel brings something different to the table, these five tech trends are something to keep an eye on in any modernized, digital hotel.

Near-Field Communication Technology

You’ve probably used (or at least heard of) ApplePay and Presto cards already. But can you picture opening your hotel room door with that same technology? Near-field communication technology, or NFC, is a common feature in smartphones, travel passes, and even locating your lost car keys. Anything that involves the contactless transfer of information uses NFC. In hotels, NFC is being used instead of a key card. The Clarion hotel piloted an NFC key program, giving selected guests smartphones with NFC entry enabled. These guests reported a high level of satisfaction with the system. Because of the pervasive nature of NFC technology, the use of smartphones as key cards acts as a seamless integration of technology, creating a digital hotel experience.

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Location Services for Hotel Staff

Have you ever needed help from hotel staff, but had to wait for a manager to find someone? Well, no longer! Location services have been around for years, and are now making their way into the modern hotel guest experience. These location services are effective because they help managers find the closest qualified employee. This means that hotel guests receive service faster. It also means that hotels can run more efficiently, providing optimal service for each guest.

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Mobile Tech Hubs in Hotel Rooms

“Hey Alexa, when’s check-out?” Smart home technology is coming to a hotel room near you! Newly modernized hotel rooms are starting to come equipped with smart-home technology, so your hotel room can feel like a home away from home. With a mobile tech hub, hotel guests can pair their phones to the room’s amenities. This means that the TV, lighting system, thermostat, and even the lock on the door can be controlled with the flick of a finger. Because guest convenience is key when considering modern digital hotel rooms, putting room controls on a familiar device is a simple way to maximize comfort and technological advancement at the same time.

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Service Automation and Self-Serve Kiosks

Think self-serve checkouts, but better. Automated check-in options range from self-serve kiosks in hotel lobbies to hotel apps. These automated service options reduce guest wait times. They also increase flexibility for room booking preferences and make it easier to book amenities, like massages, restaurant reservations, and other hotel services. While a kiosk is an easy way to integrate technology into a modern hotel, apps may be more convenient for an on-the-go traveller. Imagine checking in after your flight lands, or in the taxi ride over? Apps can be used anywhere there’s a data connection. These automated check-in options help make hotel service smooth.

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AI Chatbots

No matter how in tune with guest needs hotels are, someone somewhere will always have a problem. Enter AI chatbots. Because these chatbots don’t require a person to operate them, a hotel can respond to an issue as it’s reported. Hotel guests can expect a resolution without having to wait for a staff member to become available. This improves customer service and increases guest satisfaction in potentially tense scenarios. Furthermore, the volume of guest interactions doesn’t influence how quickly guests receive attention from the chatbot. As the bot is simply an AI, it can handle multiple requests at the same time.

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The Modern Hotel Guest Experience

Seamless digital hotels are not just a thing of the future — they are a reality of the modern hotel guest experience. Technology is making hotels around the world more connected, improving the quality of a guest’s stay in real, concrete ways. While many of these trends are up-and-coming, some are already a universal reality among higher-end hotels and resorts. With these technological advances creeping in to a hotel room near you, who knows what the next advancement in digital hotels will be?

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