An Original Hotel Offering for Winning over Generation Y Travellers

Hotels are being modernised and are developing innovations to target Generation Y business travellers.

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Digital nomads, used to coworking spaces, tech-savvy, and looking for autonomy and support are the new generation of business travellers. How is the hotel industry updating its offering to attract this clientele of travellers in their early thirties?

Innovation serving the client

In response to the new behaviour and priorities of digital natives, hotel establishments are stepping up their levels of service and innovation. The young brand Citizen M is an excellent example of this. In its 'smart rooms', the focus is on technology, and guests can personalise the ambience of their tech-based accommodation using an in-room tablet. Guests can also check-in and check-out using their email or a QR code; the aim being to enable business guests, young and not so young, to save time.

Another original idea introduced by Marriott is the touchscreen digital shower door. The American luxury hotelier has installed a number of these doors; a highly attractive gadget for noting down ideas that are then sent directly to your email address, in its Los Angeles establishment: the Marriott Irvine Spectrum.  

Between autonomy and assistance

According to the 2019 Sabre GDS Hospitality Trends Report, Generation Y travellers waver between a desire for autonomy and a need for assistance. Yes to facial recognition check-in. Marriott trialled this last summer in two of its establishments in China: the Hangzhou Marriott Hotel Qianjiang and the Sanya Marriott Hotel Dadonghai Bay.

Yes to an end-to-end digital experience. This is what the Smart LYZ Hotel in Shenzhen offers with reservations via WeChat, registration via a biometric device, and room access via a smartphone app.

And yet, young business travellers are also looking for assistance and human contact - not just with local residents. They seek contact with staff at the hotel and the conviviality of coworking spaces.

As such, in Japan, the Henn na Hotel (which means 'strange') had to do away with its 243 robots (reception, automated luggage trolleys, voice assistants, and similar) and replace them with humans as robot-staff turned out to be unworkable and irritated guests. 

And as for reservations

Generation Y business travellers are ultra-connected, increasingly nomadic and demanding, which means that an element of flexibility is required when taking into account the services they want. Hotels are thus trying out new forms of marketing using innovative startups that offer practical booking applications.

It's also a generation that loves a good deal, and the travel app Hotel Tonight , for instance, allows users to find discounted hotel rooms in the Americas, Europe, and Australia, enabling them to enjoy discounts of up to 70% if they book a room for the same evening using geolocation. Many concepts, like Day Use, which offers day-use rooms for a few hours - convenient for resting between two flights - also meet this need for flexibility.

This emerging target, which will include the majority of tomorrow's business travellers, is driving the hospitality industry to be creative. The industry is making itself over to conquer this new generation of business travellers and creating a new era of hospitality.   

Published by Thi bao on 05/11/2019 Photo credit: © AccorHotels

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