This too shall pass! The hospitality industry has had other crises and viruses in the past, such as SARS in 2003 which impacted hotel bookings with a 50% decrease. However, just three years later, the hotel industry increased with a total contribution of $5,160 billion to the global GDP.
After COVID-19 the hotel industry may change. Customers may revise behaviors and preferences but the traveling and the hotel industry will never die.
Understanding this, what would be your hotel’s strategy to survive the crisis? How will this situation affect your customer’s preferences? And how will it affect your business?
Your strategy should be focused on “Safety and Service” which is focused on three main pillars that hoteliers must improve this year.
Pillar 1: SAFETY.
Customer safety will be in focus this year and in the years to come. Which hygiene and safety measures will hoteliers take and how will they communicate them clearly to their customers? People will still travel but they will be more cautious about safety and the type of tourism establishments that they are choosing. Communicating the new safety measures will be part of hotels’ marketing campaign.
Respecting social distance and offering added safety measures to the guests will decrease capacity which will naturally lead to price increase.
Pillar 2: VALUE.
Staff training is going to be very important in order to increase value, as value is needed to justify the increase of prices. In order to maintain the guests base and potentially increase sales, hotels will need to satisfy the value expectations that the higher prices will indicate. Therefore, offering exceptional service is highly recommended.
Pillar 3: PERFORMANCE.
Total quality management (TQM) systems will be needed in hotels in order to decrease the risks, maintain high standards and increase their performance. During such crises, hotels that change and adapt to circumstances will survive and dominate the market.
While some hoteliers see the situation as very negative and draining, some others are already planning, not only to survive but rather, lead the market. In every crisis lies an opportunity and some hoteliers are taking the advantage to restructure their offers and pricing, target new customers and adapt to new circumstances.
After this crisis, it is a new world which requires new efforts, creativity, transparency and professionalism.