One of our core values in our mission is to make the guest journey easy. And easiness means for us that we need more ways – more channels – for guests to reach hotels and vice versa.
If a guest wants to book a hotel room via SMS or Facebook Messenger, we need to be able to offer just that. If they want to ask something regarding their stay, they should be able to do that too, through the channel of their choosing.
Around three months ago WhatsApp announced that it would allow businesses to integrate their communication systems with their service, meaning even more communication channels for businesses to reach their customers. This is great news for any business – including us – that wants to integrate WhatsApp into their channels.
We want to make it possible for guests to use WhatsApp to communicate with hotels, and we are doing just that. However, the waiting lines are still long for the service, so we will get back to it when it is possible.
Check-ins and checkouts, made effortless
After booking a hotel room, the guest receives an SMS (or a notification on Hotelway app) in addition to the confirmation email. These new channels are seen as easier ways to communicate with the hotel, especially regarding general inquiries that might not warrant an email. This is also true for check-ins and checkouts. 48 hours prior to their arrival the guest receives a message notifying them of the possibility for a pre-check-in, which can be done easily on their mobile devices and eliminates the need to wait in line at the reception desk.
During their stay the communication does not stop. In addition to the guest messaging the hotel, it is also done vice versa. The hotel can send automated, targeted messages to their guests, directly into their pockets. This allows hotels to professionally manage every touchpoint of their guests’ journeys. They can for example notify every guest travelling alone about their happy hour, or all families about a special offer to the local amusement park.
The Communication Center
Our brand-new dashboard aims to streamline all communication between guests and hotels by collecting everything from confirmation messages to random questions to the hotel – be it via SMS, WhatsApp or our app – to a single place that is convenient for the hotel to address everything in. So, a guest might ask about bike rentals via SMS, the hotel gets it on our dashboard, answers it and the guest gets their reply again via SMS. But would this increased 2-way communication hinder the hotel’s capabilities to answer them in a timely manner? Not necessarily. We have a bot.
Most questions and messages can be answered by bots
We already have a bot – Sam – that will be able to answer the most common questions the guests might have, be it about breakfast information or ordering champagne to the room. Most replies take roughly 1-3 minutes. This is great because in case the bot is unable to answer a complex question, it automatically forwards the message to a human – a Hotelway employee or someone from hotel staff.
Get the most out of Hotelway with our mobile, universal app
By allowing multiple channels for guests to reach hotels and vice versa, we are only making communication faster and easier. But in order to get all the benefits we offer, especially to frequent travellers, guests need our mobile app. It allows to effortlessly manage all their hotel stays with a few taps on the app. We allow users to save all their personal information from passport details to room location preferences to a single place, stored securely on their devices. All this information (when the user wants to) will be forwarded to the hotel so they exactly how to cater to each individual’s needs.
Integration via Hotelway
Direct integration to the hotels proprietary systems, e.g. door locks, can be easily done with Hotelway. Other possibilities include the printing of key cards, again eliminating the need for queuing at the front desk.
We want hotel stays to be easy. No one wants to wait at the reception desk to ask about calling a cab or checking out. We want to eliminate unnecessary bottlenecks from the process, allowing hotels to focus on adding value to the guest journey.