Then vs Now
In the past, a hotel without a buffet, or without live entertainment in its bar, would be considered “unthinkable”. Likewise, a hotel with only the bare minimum for linen and room decor could also result in negative feedback. Presently, though, this has become the new normal because of the coronavirus pandemic. If you’re planning your hotel reopening, follow the best practices discussed in this article, focused on Guest Services.
Checking in and Checking Out
Having long lines at the hotel reception counter have been a welcome sight before COVID-19. Nowadays, seeing long lines especially because those lines could make social distancing challenging, is a no-no!
Here’s a hotel reopening strategy for the protection of employees and guests: make mobile check-ins and check-outs available. This way, guests wouldn’t need to have face to face communication with the guest services team. Guests will also find it very convenient to be able to check in right away into their rooms. If there’s an issue with the check-in or check-out, that’s the only time your employees and guests would need to interact face to face.
Wearing Masks and Social Distancing
Part of the CDC guidelines for hotel reopening (and the reopening of other non-hospitality establishments for that matter), is to reduce the risk from both symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals. This is where face masks come in, including social distancing.
Your guest services team (all hotel employees, in fact), should wear recommended face coverings at all times. Requiring all guests to wear face masks is also highly recommended. Aside from wearing face masks, social distancing is a must. This means maintaining a distance of at least 6 feet (2M) from one person to the next. If possible, install a barrier between your reception staff and guests.
If your hotel has a restaurant, a hotel reopening advice is to redesign the seating arrangement. There should be a distance of at least 6 feet (2M) from one seating to another. In booth seating, it’s highly encouraged to have physical barriers set up.
Practicing Proper Hygiene
Training and requiring employees to practice proper hygiene based on CDC guidelines is a hotel reopening requirement. This means frequent handwashing and making use of hand sanitizers that are made up of at least 60% alcohol. Employees should also be reminded to avoid touching hands to the face.
Putting up hand sanitizing stations for employees and guests to use on each floor is also a best practice and can help mitigate the risk of COVID-19 infections within your hotel.
Hotel reopening during COVID-19 and even Post-COVID means prioritizing guest services through these safety and sanitation procedures. Doing so could help your hotel SURVIVE.
Hospitality industry leader Hogan Hospitality Group is here to give more advice on providing guest services amidst these trying times.