A new survey conducted by Cornell University’s Center for Hospitality Research points to what mobile users expect from hospitality and travel smartphone apps. On the cusp of 2015’s travel season, the study points to smartphone features that surveyed participants say they currently use or expect to have available from hotel and travel mobile applications.
Entitled “The Mobile Revolution Is Here: Are You Ready?” the study is the first of a multi-phased project sponsored in part by Intel and Monscierge, for advancing mobile innovation in the hospitality industry.
It discovered that hotel guests are particularly interested in using mobile for room-ready notifications; requesting room amenities; hotel services and rooms upgrades. The data also reflects the fact that women and younger travellers were particularly willing to share personal information on a limited basis in exchange for special services offered.
Gene Hopper, strategy & alignment, Monscierge, said: “This is the first look at guests’ mobile expectations while they are on property, proving that guest desire a mobile-enhanced experience.”
Hopper continued: “These expectations aren’t unrealistic. We’re using our phones to get our prescriptions, do our banking … Guests expect to use smartphones to build connections to their hotels, to take the friction out of regular tasks.”
The study also looks at digital platforms used for both the pre-trip phase and during the travellers’ stay. It touches slightly on post-stay connections, looking at personal information guests are willing to share that might boost poor hotel-to-guest engagement or potentially increase onsite revenue. One item of note – the report significantly found that travellers prefer one app that could be used to create a personal travel profile, serving as a central location for their information and preferences. This is so hotels could provide a more customized experience rather than needing to download apps for individual hotels or brands.
The next report is expected later in 2015, continuing to develop out the usage and preferences of travelers, as well as how mobile is affecting hospitality staff behind the scenes.