With expensive cellular data packages making users more reliant on available WiFi networks, it’s only a matter of time before free hotel WiFi becomes a necessity for travelers instead of a bonus luxury. Let’s take a look at the evidence:
- We use the Internet for just about everything these days: restaurant recommendations, directions, work, communication, entertainment and more. We carry the world around in our pockets, and we’ve come to expect it to be there for us when we have a question or want to order some late-night delivery.
- Once upon a time, leisure travelers were excited by PPV and HBO in hotel rooms. Now the average traveler just wants some reliable hotel WiFi so they can watch last week’s episode on HBO Go or binge watch on Netflix before Skyping with their family.
- Nowadays, business travelers need reliable hotel WiFi more than they need a business center with a fax machine. Email and communication apps, such as Slack are how business travelers stay on top of their to-do lists while traveling. And with the rise of Cloud computing, hotel WiFi is more important to this segment than ever.
So what does this shift in what guests value mean for hoteliers?
Well, the first step is obviously to install and maintain a reliable hotel WiFi network. It can be difficult to engineer reliable WiFi coverage for large buildings like hotels, but an expert WiFi network engineer can assess your building’s needs and design a network that will keep all your guests satisfied, no matter how far they are from the router.
Besides installing a better WiFi network, however, this change in what customers expect and want from their hotel experience is an opportunity to examine how you could better serve your guests overall. We suggest doing market research and sending out customer satisfaction surveys. You will set your hotel apart when you figure out which extras you’re currently offering don’t have much added value and could be replaced with services or amenities that this new generation of travelers really wants and needs.