Top Hotel Technology is in Demand for Today's Busy Business Travelers
Nothing can ruin a hotel visit for a busy business traveler like technology that doesn't work right. Experts weighed in
for HX: The Newsletter on what road warriors are looking for in technology during their hotel stays.
"Business travelers are among the most tech-savvy travelers out there. Often, traveling for work requires always being
connected, so an easy way for hotels to attract this specific group is to provide the most up-to-date and innovative
technological offerings," said Anita Ngai, chief revenue office at Klook, a Hong Kong-based travel experiences
This not only means in-room and on-premise business technology offerings (high-speed WiFi, interactive conference
rooms, etc.), but seamless ways to interact digitally with hotels, she added. Guests are almost assured to interact
with the hotels' technology before arrival, so hotels should ensure there is a level of trust and confidence from the
beginning to communicate technological sophistication.
Hotels today can truly go the extra mile when it comes to incorporating luxury technology services, in addition to
their business offerings.
"Though traveling for business is uniquely different than traveling for personal vacation, business travelers still
appreciate state-of-the art technology services that can assist with planning activities outside of work," Ngai added.
"This is where hotel concierge apps and interactive tech services can play a large role in attracting a new wave of
modern business travelers who are eager to mix business with pleasure."
Frankly, business guests "just want it (technology) to work," said attorney Cliff Risman, who is the co-chair of the
hospitality & leisure team at the law firm of Foley Gardere in Dallas.
Business travelers want good, fast WiFi that is seamless in the guest rooms and in all public spaces and is free and is
easy to access, Risman added. Business travelers generally have all of the devices they need when they are on the road.
Many hotel companies are beginning to use online check in and room selection, which eliminates the necessity of having
to check in at the front desk. Some hotels have taken it a step further by enabling guests to download their room key
onto their phone. This technology enables tired business travelers direct access to their room and they can avoid
visiting the front desk entirely, noted Scott Samuels, chief executive officer of Horizon Hospitality, an Overland
Park, Kan-based hospitality industry executive search and recruitment agency.
"While the use of technology with travel fare aggregators such as Orbitz, Travelocity and Expedia continue to provide
the best rates for business travel, they also make changing or modifying reservations extremely difficult," Samuels
said. "Many business travelers use their websites to identify the best rates and desired hotel quality level within a
specific radius of their destination and then book with the hotel directly."