What do guests want from their hotel? If you answered “designer beds” and “spiffy lobbies” maybe you’ve been sipping the hotel industry Kool-Aid for too long.
The correct answer is disturbingly simple, according to a new survey of frequent guests by D. K. Shifflet & Associates. People don’t want to be nickeled-and-dimed for their Internet connection or parking. They don’t want to hear the honemooners in the next room. They don’t want to gag on someone else’s cigarette smoke. A free breakfast would be nice, too.
That should come as no surprise to hotel guests. But what might raise an eyebrow are the rest of the findings. A well-lit room and easy access to outlets rated close behind a free breakfast. Those are two relatively inexpensive amenities, according to Chris Klauda, the company’s vice president for lodging.
Adding a bit of wattage to improve lighting, or a longer electrical cord to improve access to outlets could pay off as much as adding items to the breakfast bar – and the ROI is better.
In these lean times hoteliers need to be creative in finding the simple changes that make a difference and that these small changes may greatly reduce the annoyance when these items are not available.
I had to chuckle when I saw this survey.
The fact that hoteliers have to be told that their guests would be happier if Internet and parking was free, and that they like well-lighted rooms and “free” breakfast is a little outrageous.
Is anyone listening?