The UNWTO provided preliminary results showing the trends for world travel. Ehotelier.com published a summary of the results in their article, 2017 international tourism results: The highest in seven years. With Europe, Asia and the Pacifics, the Americas, Africa, and the Middle East experiencing increases in tourism, things are looks positive for 2019.
HNN published an article that summarizes some of the trends in hospitality recruitment. In their article, Aim higher when hiring: Tips for improving recruitment, they highlight these takeaways:
- Hotels can now use online platforms to hire short term contract worker in the case of a busy weekend
- Hiring is now done by communicating over Skype, messaging, other services
- Hotels are identifying work tasks that can be done by technology instead of hiring staff
- The author anticipates a shortage of available qualified labor in hospitality, despite the industry’s growth
- Hiring millennials involves focusing on selling the benefits to them
Guests are turning to outside food delivery options, using apps such as GrubHub, UberEats, and EatNow. By using this technology, guests have access to a wide variety of meal options, all from the comfort of their room. Some hotels are recognizing the value of partnering with these food delivery apps through loyalty programs, providing menus in the room, and making delivery easier. Read the full article on Hotel News Now: Outside food delivery services gain traction at hotels.
Modern travelers value “experiential travel”, yet defining this type of travel is sometimes difficult, as traveler preferences and the tourism marketplace are ever changing. This article is a precursor to the Skift 2018 Experiential Traveler Survey, which is set to be published soon. One of the data points revealed is that 69% of respondents prioritize spending more money on activities over spending on a nicer hotel room. This behavior works well with the hostel industry since guests often stick to a budget for their accommodation in order to spend more on tours and activities. Read Skift Research Survey Preview: Travelers Value Activities More Than a Luxe Room.
Back in 2015, Airbnb cut back on the number of third party companies it chose to affiliate with and offer their products on. Now, it looks like Airbnb is willing to increase their partnerships and offer their properties on third party sites, only if they meet certain criteria. Read Airbnb Reverses Strategy in Return to Affiliate Partnerships With Big Players on Skift.
Your staff are the front line of interaction with customers, so it’s no surprise that customers have a better experience when your staff are happy. This article dives into a few studies and experiments that reinforce this idea. According to the article, “creating an emotional connection appears to be key to build customers’ loyalty, and employees play the most powerful role in building this emotional connection.” This links to the idea of “emotional contagion”, in which a guest will mirror the emotion that the staff displays. Happy customers help with positive word-of-mouth, which leads to more bookings. Read A happy employee will make a happy customer on eHotelier.
Airbnb announced new tools to make it easier for vacation rental property managers to oversee multiple properties. For example, it will allow managers to set pricing and availability rules and a unified calendar. The new tools will also integrate with many of the property management systems already being used by vacation rental managers. Read Airbnb Debuts New Tools for a Bigger Cut of the $138 Billion Vacation Rental Industry on Skift.
Snapchat recently released a feature called “Context Cards”, which allow users to swipe up on a snap to reveal more information about the location it was taken. From here, users can see maps, make a booking, or contact local businesses, all within a few taps. This feature could allow businesses to connect more with potential customers, and assist existing customers in spreading the word. As of now, Snap doesn’t allow businesses to pay for messages or content, but the future may include commissions for bookings and fees for ad placement. Read Snap’s New Feature for Hotels and Destinations Shows the Promise of Visual Search on Skift.
Tourism Australia has taken a huge focus on the youth segment of travelers. Their latest campaign “There’s Nothing Like Australia” has been marketed to potential young travelers across many countries. Read through the following information to see how your Australian business can be involved and make the most of their campaign.
- Use the technology and data resources provided by the OTAs. You’re probably using their site anyway, and the can provide decent daily rate advice.
- Diversify your distribution channels, try new booking platforms that are popular in specific markets and countries.
- Increase your own direct bookings by making your site mobile optimized, since 30% of bookings are completed using a mobile device. Also, encourage more guest reviews by sending feedback forms and respond to all reviews.