With the recent global coronavirus outbreak, it’s safe to say that the tourism and hospitality industry is taking a massive hit.
Sure, the stock markets are also plummeting, but stocks will rise again.
Still, a room that is not sold today is lost revenue forever.
So, when it comes to hotels, you can bet that hotel owners and managers are reeling, trying to come up with a plan to address coronavirus, but more importantly, to have strategies to recoup their losses once we are past the current crisis.
With that said, how exactly will the tourism and hospitality industry respond to the outbreak and the aftermath? Will hotels strive to implement new technologies rapidly?
Let’s face it - hotels are slow to adapt
For whatever reason, hotels are known to adapt slowly to new technologies.
And with the coronavirus outbreak spreading faster and faster each and every day, it should come as no surprise that they need very creative ideas for the time once that crisis is behind us.
Think about it - the information flow from the hotel to a third-party vendor is already weak. Without an effective method for communication, hotel vendors are forced to deal with errors, mistakes, and miscommunications, leaving them at a financial disadvantage.
And for the hotels, it can be even worse.
How many bookings are they missing out on because a potential guest wasn’t aware of a unique feature?
How many times does the front desk have to whip out an upgrade to avoid a bad review from a disgruntled guest because someone else made a mistake the hotel was not even aware of?
There’s a lack of communication and a lack of control of their distribution network in hotels these days, and this is something that has to change.
Before the current crisis, that might have been just a nuisance that was somewhat acceptable. But now, with the added losses from travelers just not traveling, it can drive them out of business in no time.
Where do we go from here?
From the current coronavirus outbreak, hotels can learn a valuable lesson - they need to be at the forefront of innovation.
Not only for their own sake but for their guests and for their vendors. They need to take charge of the information distribution process and communicate changes quickly, efficiently and in a structured manner.
In order to successfully raise from the coronavirus crisis, they need to get the word out. Not only work with bigger OTAs or pray for direct bookings.
Being accurately showcased on as many booking channels as possible, with as much information as possible is key to their future success and their fight for survival.