The digital contactless guest journey is here to stay | MyStay

The digital contactless guest journey is here to stay

MyStay editorial staff 4 minute read

We at MyStay have been advocating for a (contactless) change in the hospitality field for years. As a software company that focuses on hotel technology this is purely logical, you might think.


We have been doing so, not because we like robots and dislike people. On the contrary! We love people, and we want to give them more time and space for meaningful work and for meaningful interactions.

However, it is not about what we want, the important thing is understanding what hotels and their guests want, and whether the industry is ready for a change.

There are some recent factors that influence how the whole hospitality industry operates at the moment:

New challenges the whole industry has to deal with and new trends that have been adopted, either as a direct result of the pandemic, or as part of the natural process of change (like in every industry).

New challenges and new trends in hospitality industry.

Here at MyStay believe, that even though some factors can change rather fast compared to others, some of them are here to stay.

The way we all live our lives has changed over the last ten years, pandemic or not. We order taxis via apps, book flights with two clicks or shop for food all from our mobile devices. We learned to expect and demand a frictionless experience and instant gratification. The guests expectations have risen significantly and the hotels need to start taking it very seriously.

If you are still not convinced, below are some numbers that might change your mind.

In a recent study done by our partners at Oracle Hospitality and Skift, more than 600 hoteliers and 5,000 consumers across the world have been surveyed to better understand marketplace expectations for the next three years. The findings of the research effort, reveal the critical roles technology will play in redefining hospitality.

The report explores key topics such as:

What are the “must-have” technologies from a guest service and hotel investment perspective?
How will automation and artificial intelligence enable hotels to provide more personalized guest services before, during, and after their stay?
How are hotels rethinking their revenue models to support guest demands for more customized experiences?

And the results?

95% of people plan to travel in the next six months. However, many want to eliminate the ‘touch’ from the high-touch industry they once knew. Nearly three-quarters (73%) of travelers want to use their mobile device to manage their hotel experience, including checking in and out, paying, ordering food and more.

Other findings show us that:

73% agree that they’re more likely to stay at a hotel that offers self-service technology to minimize contact with the staff and other guests.
38% want a fully self-service model, with staff only available upon request.
39% want to order room service from their phone or a chatbot.
49% are also looking for contactless payments

The labor shortage has been mentioned as one of the key issues for hospitality industry, more and more technologies are being adopted to help replace the missing workforce.

65% of hoteliers said incorporating new technologies for staff best describes their strategy to weather labor shortages and attract new talent.
96% are investing in contactless technology, with 62% noting “a fully contactless experience” is likely to be the most widely adopted tech in the industry in the next three years.
54% added that their highest priority is to adopt tech that improves or eliminates the need for the front desk experience between now and 2025.
Travelers are mixed on how patient they are willing to be in this transition:

39% said they want a fully contactless experience for all basic hotel transactions (check-in/out, food & beverage, room keys, etc.).
34% said a staff shortage, and resulting slow service, would be their #1 deterrent to rebooking a hotel. However, just 23% noted that a lack of daily room cleaning is an issue, showing consumers have accepted (and 17% welcomed) that this pre-pandemic mainstay is never coming back.
Source: 73% of travelers want hotels with self-service tech by Hotel Business

Phew! That was something, right?

Well, we have some more for you, because we also work with our own statistics. Here are few of them:

✏️ pre-covid trend was in average 27% of guests finalizing online check-in, with lowest number in August 2019 (15%);
✏️ from May 2021 we are constantly at +50% of guests who did online check-in;
✏️ the conversion rate in first "COVID" summer - the season of July & August 2020 - was 95% and 90%;
✏️ July 2021 had got 80% of guests who made online check-in
✏️ April 2022 was 79%
Contactless digital guest journey - online check-in trend

The process of modernization and digitization is inevitable. And this is not the result of the recent pandemic, though it „helped“ to speed up the process.

Why? Let’s sum it up:

📱 guests prefer a facility that offers contactless reception
🎯 digitized guest journey is perfect of any type of traveler – every single group can benefit from it
📈 digitization means increased efficiency, savings on operational costs and increase in revenue
☝️ Data from our current clients show that online check-in can reduce check-in times by 70%
🤖 Technology offers a sustainable solution to the staffing crisis

Social-distance and digital communication preferences will continue to dominate the hospitality industry. Hoteliers that adapt to work existing technology that speaks to the preferred contactless experience into the guest journey will find themselves ahead of the curve.

Would you like to know more? Book a short discovery call!

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