When we take a look at the accommodation economy, there has been a strong growth in alternative accommodation services like Airbnb, HomeAway etc. While there is a rise in bookings in the hotel industry, some still feel the growth of alternative accommodation websites as a threat.
The likes of Airbnb and HomeAway provide vacation rentals that are different market as compared to hotels. These sites cover the consumer market that is more concerned in regards to the price, choice and the convenience of alternate accommodations.
The important question for hoteliers is that, how can hotels thrive in the competitive accommodation space? Well here are some points that will serve as the differentiating factors for hotels from other accommodation sectors:
Just imagine yourself as a traveler wouldn’t you love to travel to a location that has ease of access to public transportation and tourist attractions? Therefore, a central location will be the best option for guests as they can easily move faster to nearby attractions or take a tour of the city via buses.
Now, this is where hotels get a huge advantage over other accommodation alternatives. The vacation rentals are mostly located in the residential areas. Whereas most of the hotels are situated in the middle of the city.
Many hotels have exclusive facilities such as restaurants, bar or spa that make the stay experience even better for the guests. One more huge benefit for hotels are the room amenities that set them apart from other accommodations.
The vacation rentals lack such facilities. So by providing room services, laundry services, conference rooms etc. you can help guests to save their time and make their stay convenient.
Having a friendly staff is a boon in the hospitality industry. When the staff listens to the customers and do their best to meet the demands, then it really makes guests feel that the hotel cares for them.
Whenever there is an issue with the room during the stay, the guests can simply make a request for the solution. The hotel has the ability to shift guests into other rooms or fix any amenity such a defective air conditioner when required. But that is not the case in the vacation rentals as they don’t have the ability to relocate guests to other rooms.
In the end, it is inevitably true that hotels do make the guest experience as convenient as possible.
Hospitality is an ever changing industry. Hotels need to understand from Airbnb and other vacation rental websites about how they cater to their guests. After evaluating them hotels can come up with the factors that differentiate them in the industry. Therefore, hotels need to evolve as per the changes in the market and find ways to retain loyal customers.