Goodbye bland travel experiences. Hello “culture shock”. Modern travellers are redefining what hospitality looks like in 2023 and beyond.
Hot off the press, Booking.com revealed what modern travellers are seeking – it’s not just another holiday.
- The desire for a complete “culture shock” is on the rise as travellers seek to visit places that are completely different from their homes, language, food and culture.
- Getting off-grid. No wi-fi. No mobile connection. A large section of travellers is seeking to get away from the grips of technology and closer to nature.
- Nostalgic getaways, driven by escapism make some travellers seek out the simpler, “more basic” holidays. These could include opting for buses, visiting landmarks and attractions, etc.
- Wellness is here to stay, and growing as an attraction for people to visit a destination and property.
- Bleisure is here to stay. Business trips turn into leisure-filled days.
- Travel is on the rise but increasing inflation means people are conscious of what they spend on their travel. Expect budget-conscious guests to walk through the doors in 2023, possibly beyond.
What do these travel trends mean for hotel marketing? What can you do as a property owner to attract guests?
Focus on customer experience
If you get it right, your guests will not only return, but also becomes your brand ambassadors, amplifying your marketing efforts. In fact, OTAs such as Expedia have updated their algorithms to give preference to properties that have been called out by guests for their fantastic guest experience.
The website becomes a powerful tool
Direct bookings are on the rise and your website is one of the most effective marketing tools to attract and convert guests (commission-free). Websites should not be designed based on your business needs but on users’ needs. Make them fast-loading, mobile-friendly and easily navigable. Most importantly they should be designed to convert lookers into bookers. Creeping in quickly is a need to personalise guests’ journeys on the site.
Pride in the local community
Hotel designs and experiences that showcase the local culture help create a distinct identity for the property and appeal to that rising section of travellers seeking more authenticity in travel.
Nature is a luxury
What started as a trend with some boutique hotels offering adventure travel has now become a huge calling card for travellers – especially from cities – looking to escape into the lap of luxury. Packaging your property experiences with activities such as kayaking, hiking, cycling, etc. can tremendously hike up its appeal. Also building green spaces within your hotel, such as rooftop gardens, etc are a great calling card.
Offers for the whole family
Kids and multi-generational travel hold a strong place in the future of hospitality. Align your accommodation to meet the needs of everyone in the family – accessibility for seniors, creche or bunk beds for kids, etc. Remember, pets are equally a part of the family, and allowing them into your premises is good for guests and business.
Sustainability is not yet old news
A growing number of eco-friendly travellers continue to seek out accommodation that lowers their carbon footprint by giving preference to homegrown over global mass-produced goods, being conscious of their energy consumption and similar measures to be sustainable.
Rapidly changing consumer mindset has forced hoteliers to adopt technology that makes the guest experience seamless and convenient. From the accurate representation of preferred OTAs via a channel manager to an easy-to-use and secure website booking engine data collection, revenue management and online review management, anything that gets you a step closer to making the guest experience better, is a must-have for modern hoteliers.
This is also booming with many travellers who are trying to go easy on their pockets. In related trends, booking windows are much shorter and cancellation policies continue to be very flexible across the industry.
Insights are critical
As marketing dollars become dearer, data and insights have become more important than ever to understand the effectiveness of your marketing strategy so you can dial up channels that are working best for you.
Up-selling and cross-selling
Upselling & cross-selling is a great way to drive up incremental revenue is also on the rise by smart hoteliers.
This article was first published on https://blog.staah.com/featured/hospitality-trends-for-2023-whats-in-and-whats-out.