As millions of people continue to turn to home-sharing companies like Airbnb, luxury hotels are looking for a ways to adapt and stay competitive. The cash-strapped traveler is often associated with home-sharing, but the luxury traveler is turning to these services as well, as they provide an ultra-personalized experience and the ability to live like a local. Listed below are three ways hoteliers can stay competitive in the sharing economy.
1. Making Concierge More Visible
The Airbnb host is the local expert that the luxury traveler engages with. Often times, the guest’s fondest travel memories come from the Airbnb host’s suggestions. The host’s strong knowledge of the local area is a big reason many luxury travelers take advantage of home-sharing services. As a response, hoteliers have been focusing on making the concierge more visible and available, as the ultimate resource for the surrounding area. Some ways of doing so could be promoting your concierge’s tips and knowledge on social channels, or leveraging in-room technology to give the guest access to the concierge.
2. Creating Unique Local Experiences
Airbnb and other digital services appeal to the traveler’s growing interest of getting to know the local people and better understanding their culture. Luxury resorts are getting creative with ways of providing more personalized, immersive experiences to their guests. One way to do this: Partnering with luxury brands in the surrounding area can be a great way to differentiate. The Inn at Windmill Lane’s partnership with Intermix is a great example of designing and promoting a personalized memorable experience.
3. Leveraging Loyalty Programs
At the end of the day, home-sharing comes with a certain level of unpredictability that luxury resorts can take advantage of. These inconsistent experiences could be with the booking process, the level of service an Airbnb host offers, or the limited set of amenities offered. Luxury hotels must continue to look for ways of standing out in these areas. A strong loyalty programs can be a great way of ensuring a reliable experience, every time. Kimpton Hotel’s loyalty program is a fine example of removing unnecessary ancillary fees, providing a mini bar allowance, free WiFi and complimentary use of items such as hairdryers and computer chargers.
These are just some of the ways hoteliers are adapting to stay competitive. To learn more about appealing to today's luxury traveler, click the link below: