In 2021, guests who may have once dismissed hotel technology as a cost-cutting measure are now viewing it as protective, both of their well-being and of their holiday lifestyles. It’s not just accepted as a guest experience, it’s expected.

In a recent interview Abbas El Shabasy, Corporate Director of Information Technologies at Sunrise Resorts & Cruises said, “Due to Covid-19 guests expect us to offer the latest technology to minimalise contact. It provides them with peace of mind and it’s part of our responsibility as hosts.”

With the global pandemic, hotels have been scrambling to minimalise touchpoints and take additional measures to disinfect, distance, and ventilate, while aligning with the products and procedures advised by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Contactless technology that simplifies hotel registration

Digitalisation and operations are being overhauled globally to provide a safe customer experience, with added benefits such as greater personalisation and greener protocol that is resulting from contactless technology.

Shabasy is one of the people in charge of this technology. “You can reserve your favourite restuarants, order from menus, fill in your registration card prior to arrival, download your passport and id digitally, all to minimalise contact with the registration desk. You can also receive your key electronically via a mobile app 24 hours before arrival.”

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Sunrise Resorts & Cruises launched many of these digital tools in response to Covid-19, especially the contactless technology. Guests can use a mobile app, for example, to control the curtains in the room, the AC, the TV, the lights, and more.

Enhancing the guest experience- tech that welcomes as it remembers

“The best hosts acknowledge their guests’ preferences, and this technology is no different,” Shabasy said. “The app can keep all guest preferences in the system. For example, if a guest likes to keep the AC on 25, upon their next visit, their preferences and favourites are retained.  Once they check in, those settings can be applied automatically. It enhances the guest experience to be remembered.”

IHTF Conference: Looking ahead

Like many, Abbas EL Shabasy longs to meet people face to face again. “For now, I’m anticipating catching up virtually on the latest information on booking agents, saving energy, mobile apps and channel managers,” he says. “I’m looking forward to learning and connecting.”

Don’t miss his talk on ‘Reviewing the Automated Guest Experience Landscape’ at the International Hotel Technology Forum on the 27-28 April. Interested in attending? You can register here!