As travellers (and the world population, in general) continue to become more reliant on their mobile devices to process nearly every transaction, it’s important for hoteliers to be able to accommodate those expectations. Staying on top of technology trends in the industry can enable hotel operators to deliver what their guests want, when they want it, and allowing them to pay for it in the most convenient way possible.
Knowing and anticipating how guests will want to pay for their room, meals and services is a key part in increasing direct bookings for your hotel. Here are 4 current trends in hotel payments processing that you should keep in mind.
1. Multiple Payment Methods
Credit cards continue to be the preferred method of payment for the majority of consumers, but eWallet technology is also on the rise. Customers will soon be looking for the option to make any purchase through their eWallet accounts like Apple Pay, Google Pay, AliPay, etc., as they are considered to be more secure and more convenient than carrying around cards.
Being able to offer the payment method your guests prefer is a truly customer-centric way to help generate more direct bookings in the future.
2. Seamless Transactions
Technology has made the majority of transactions effortless. You can order groceries online and have them delivered to your front door within a day and you can by-pass the line and order your triple, venti, no-foam latte from an app. Hotel guests want similar effortless transactions during their stay — this means they don’t want to have to physically hand their credit card over to pay for meals or services while on the hotel property. They don’t want to stand in line to check-in or check-out at a front desk. They don’t want to have to spend time reviewing a printed copy of their folio charges when they need to get to the airport.
Instead, create a seamless omnichannel experience across all guest payment touch-points. Give guests the ability to check-in or check-out through a mobile app or an expedited process, store preferred payment methods of frequent guests on file, provide guests with daily, itemized room charges that they can access via an app or through their TV, offer one-click payments for direct bookings, etc.
Seamless transactions eliminate the need for your guests to manually deal with the logistics of their stay, and instead allow them to just enjoy the experience.
3. Go Paperless
Electronic transaction receipts are not only preferred by the majority of hotel guests, but it’s also the most environmentally friendly option. If your hotel has a mobile app, provide itemized folios or service or tour confirmations within the app; otherwise offer to email or text the information to your guests — you’ll probably find that most would prefer it.
4. Integrate Payments with Hotel PMS
It’s become much more common for a hotel to become its own merchant of record by integrating payment processing with its existing property management system (PMS). This allows hoteliers to eliminate the extra steps of using stand-alone banks, merchants, gateways and clunky hardware and software to process transactions, and instead have the payment portal exist within the PMS. This solution allows payments to be managed centrally, which can help to increase revenue opportunities while improving the booking experience for guests.
A payment processing / PMS integration can also be a huge benefit to hotel staff, as it takes advantage of the intuitive guest-centric features of the PMS, is a secure and compliant processing option, and allows for easier payment reconciliation at the end of each day.
Staying on top of customer-centric technologies and offering payment solutions that best suit your guests’ needs will help them achieve that ‘seamless’ experience, which, in turn, will help generate direct bookings and increase ancillary revenue opportunities for your hotel property.
Whether you’re looking to take the complexity out of payment processing, speed up your reconciliations, or increase your hotel’s security, you can do it all with our platform. Contact our team today to learn more about our payment processing solution.
Photo Credit: Patrick Tomasso on Unsplash