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Competing with AirBNB: How Hotels Can Still Benefit

September 19, 2016

In recent years, AirBNB has captured the hearts and wanderlust-filled desires of travelers. The draw of this type of stay is understandable – unique, reviewed, widespread, and it just feels like home. In the midst of all of this comfort, how can a hotel stand a chance?

Focus on Benefits

Hotels do offer amenities that are not offered by AirBNB, like:

  • A fitness center
  • A restaurant or bar
  • Having a private space
  • Up to date technology

Highlight these benefits and focus on them to be sure that guests notice these hotel characteristics as benefits. When competing with wanderlust and adventure, nothing less than high-quality will be acceptable. All hotel fitness centers should have up-to-date equipment, lighting, and ventilations; superior sanitary standards, and excess gym necessities such as towels and water. Restaurants and bars should help create that sense of community by providing quality food and drinks, a tasteful atmosphere, and a friendly wait service.

Create a Community

Perhaps one of the most driving forces behind the success of AirBNB is the people-to-people relationships that are fostered.  Travelers love being welcomed into a home with open arms for the duration of his or her stay. In hotels, the staff is very welcoming, but overall the process can be seen as stiff, robotic, and routine

One thing a hotel can do is create a community that guests can foster relationships with the staff, one another, and even the outside community while traveling. Amenities like hotel restaurants and bars can be a great source of creating this community as well as hosting nightly events over the duration of one’s stay can all be greatly beneficial when competing with AirBNB.

Update the Technology

We live in a world of technology, hotels shouldn’t be any different. AirBNB is catered to the millennial generation and all they stand for. The least hotels can do is keep up with the technology travelers are using in order to still stay relevant when they decide to travel.

The most basic answer is to develop an app for your hotel – make it easy for travelers to book and pick their room, order room service, and provide real-time updates with your hotel, rather than potential guests seeing old information. A user-friendly app can create satisfied guests and potentially free up some time for hotel staff instead of sitting on the phone.

Internally, upgrading the staff’s software system can create: easier inter-departmental collaboration, cut costs by saving staff time on a user-friendly system, and eliminate the need for several systems for multiple people to use within the same building.

Create a Home-Like Environment

To create the most basic function of a hotel as a benefit, one must consider the room to be that safe haven for the customer. Guests stay at a hotel to get sleep when they cannot be at home. So upon checking in, guests should be provided with the necessary amenities to get that much-needed rest:

  • Black-out window treatments
  • Rooms of relaxing colors
  • Adjustable lighting
  • Comfy beds and pillows

These additional will help create that home away from home feel that AirBNB offers.

Up Next: How Property Managers Can Think Like a Fitness-Minded Traveler