Hotels News Keeping Customers Happy

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Pool of Sandos Playacar Beach Resort in Playa del Carmen

Hotels Doing Better at Keeping Customers Happy
Hotels are doing better at keeping you happy, according to the latest Market Metrix Hospitality Index covering the first quarter. Guest satisfaction across all segments is up a bit, 1.1 points, to a score of 84, with luxury and economy hotels showing the most improvement, up 2.5 to 88.5 and 1.6 to 80.5 respectively.

Starwood’s The Luxury Collection had the highest satisfaction score, 93, up 6.3 points. Ritz-Carlton was a close second, 92.9, up 2.6 points. Overall, guests said that they felt more comfortable, welcome and respected. (Source: Market Metrix press release).

Hotels Test Virtual Room Keys That Let You Bypass the Front Desk
If you’ve ever waited in a lengthy line while checking in for a big meeting or at a large hotel will love the idea of using your phone as a virtual key to your room, enabling you to bypass the front desk and the line and go straight to your room.

On the day you’re scheduled to arrive at the hotel, the room number and the digital hotel room key is sent securely to your mobile phone, according to VingCard Elsafe, which is working on this kind of technology.

InterContinental Hotels Group conducted a pilot test on what it calls “mobile room key” and is evaluating the results to see if the practice can be rolled out to other hotels. (Source IHG public relations department, VingCardElsafe press release).

Room Rates Rise Moderately
Hotel room rates are rising moderately as demand for business travel increases, according to the latest Business Travel Monitor.

Average domestic hotel rates increased 3 percent to $150 in Q1 2011 over Q1 2010. Average international hotel rates increased 4 percent to $238 in Q1 2011 over Q1 2010. Cities showing the highest hotel rate increases in the first quarter of 2011 over 2010 were San Francisco, 16 percent; Seattle, 9 percent; Austin, 8 percent; Omaha, 8 percent and New York City, 8 percent. (Source: press release).

Air Traveler Sanctification

Airline passengers continue to say they’re discontented with the service they get, even as hotels, fast food joints and restaurants see customer satisfaction increase, according to the latest American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). One major culprit: baggage fees.

  • Dissatisfaction with airlines dropped 1.5 % to an ACSI score of 65--a very low score
  • Passengers cited poor service and fees for baggage and other services as major sources for their discontent
  • Passengers who had to pay for checked baggage were the least satisfied--their ACSI score was 58
  • Since more than half of airline passengers pay to check their bags, the negative impact of those fees is significant
  • Southwest Airlines, which does not charge to check bags, actually saw its ACSI rating rise to 81, scoring the highest, as it has for the past 18 years

Source: ACSI press release.