In a recent search we conducted on Trip Advisor, we typed in the search term “WiFi” and discovered four important factors to today’s travelers:
1. Mediocre to Bad WiFi in an otherwise great hotel might have kept them from a 5 out of 5 rating.
(† Review 1-3)
2. Hotel Guests also complained and gave bad reviews for not having Free WiFi. Reviewers felt the resort fees should cover that amenity. († Review 4)
3. The search returned over 66K results. Some of these Hotel properties have hundreds to thousands of guests commenting on the WiFi Services in their room and within the Hotel whether good or bad.
4. Spotty connections and poor connection speeds are amongst the highest complaints.
5 Star San Francisco Hotel – Dec 2017
“The location of the hotel was great. It was nice overall, clean and what I would expect of a Hilton. My only complaint was the WiFi in my room. For all intents, it was worthless for a business traveler. It was hard to connect, dropped off all the time and made working virtually impossible. I spoke to the hotel several times & it was never resolved. They did let me work in another room for a few hours where there was good WiFi.”
Another at Popular Sedona AZ. – Dec 2017
The resort location is great. The Condo is very nice, but a little outdated. There is lots of room and the features such as pool and hot tub are close by. Our place was comfortable and relaxing, but the internet is probably the worst in the civilized World. The connect is so slow and needs serious attention.
BURBANK CA – Oct 2017
I was in town for 3 days/nights on a business trip. I arrived a few hours before check-in time, but the clerk found a room that was ready. He warned me that it was close to the elevator (which I didn’t mind). I discovered later that the Wi-Fi was terrible and after several calls and some effort on the part of the staff, I ended up talking to “tech support”. That was completely useless. The genius on the other end of the line had me go to a specific web site. It took much longer than it should have to load a static site (literally just a solid color page), but this “skilled technician” determined that I “have internet access”, and surmised that others must be using the connection too…I gave up. When I woke up very early the next day I tried again to no avail. I contacted the front desk and was offered the option of moving to a different room. The clerk even SENT someone up with key cards to another room right away. The WiFi in the new room was much better (still not great, but much better). In a perfect world the WiFi would be easy and fast in every room, but I was pleased with the hotel staff’s efforts to help and quick offer of a relocation. The “tech support” (obviously an offsight contractor) was useless and reflects badly on the otherwise great service I received from every staff person I encountered during my stay.
The room (both of them) was clean and comfortable. It is an older hotel,but well kept. One of the (four) elevators was out of service, but that was just a bit of an inconvenience. I would definitely stay here again. Very close to a wide variety of restaurants and local shops.
LAS VEGAS 5 Star Hotel – Oct 2017
…”The only thing that stops this being a 5 star review is the Wifi. It was atrocious. I’ve no idea how many messages I missed or calls I dropped. I ended up having to abandon whatsapp etc and just use my SMS and make normal calls. It’ll probably cost me a fortune, coming from Ireland, but the wifi was just so damn unreliable. I’d imagine I’ll have ended up spending more than the resort fee which should have covered adequate wifi. That issue aside, this was a lovely, laid back hotel in a great location for the strip. The room was excellent. The pool was small but always quiet. The staff were excellent. We didn’t really eat there but what we had was tasty. The shop was over priced – but that’s standard for hotels I suppose. Wifi aside, I have literally no complaints.”
Wi-Fi is no longer considered an amenity – Hotel Guests now Expect it.
Your guests not only want it to be free they also want it to be fast, secure and reliable all over your property.
“According to a 2015 Trip Advisor study, they found that 74% of travelers and 78 % of Millennials, say hotel WiFi is the most important hotel amenity. According to tourism consulting firm Resonance, Your very affluent guest worth over $1 million considered free WiFi in hotels even more important than privacy when choosing a destination.”
• 65% of hotel guests log onto a property’s WiFi within seven minutes of stepping into their room.
[ survey by Roomzzz reported by Travel post ]
With today’s travelers bringing with them more and more Wi-Fi demanding devices it is now not just about Wi-Fi access and or free Wi-Fi hotspots. It’s about your guest being able to have a strong connection all over your property with those devices. They want to sit by the pool and listen to their Pandora or Spotify music and read a book on their Ereader. Or sit in the cafe in the morning and eat breakfast and catch up on their favorite show on one of their streaming TV Apps on their Laptop, Tablet or phone. These are the conveniences they have at home and they now expect Hotels to deliver on these same conveniences. Not to mention business travelers. Their needs for a strong, secure and reliable connection is even more vital and when these travelers experience connectivity issues they get very upset and they get very vocal! Not only are they posting on rating sites and social media but they are talking to friends and family about their experiences.
In a recent article by Carolyn Murphy from Revinate.com it states..
”internet-related reviews have lower average scores (3.8 vs 4.0) than reviews that don’t mention Internet services, suggesting that when the Internet is mentioned in a review, it is normally seen as a drawback to the hotel experience. A deeper look into the data reveals that internet-related reviews seem to most negatively affect the occurrence of 5 star reviews. From our investigation, we can infer that there are fewer five star reviews that mention Internet because people expect perfect Internet service. Since it’s expected, they don’t think to write about it when it’s flawless. But when they don’t have a good Internet experience, they can’t award a hotel five stars.”
What Your Guests Want
So what’s important when you are considering your hotel Wi-Fi solution?
Speed: Guests want to not only check email and browse the web, but also stream a movie or music and chat with the kids back home via Skype. You may want to check your hotel’s Internet speed (see, for instance, Speedtest) and if it’s low, you can talk with your service provider about ways to improve it.
Signal reliability: You probably don’t want your guests wandering the halls or standing on the balcony trying to catch a signal. Consider walking around with a phone or laptop and check the connection on every floor and all sides of the building. If you find inconsistencies, you can invest in equipment to extend your signal’s range.
Security: You might talk with your provider to ensure you have adequate security. If you can, provide guests with their own password and username. An insecure hotel Wi-Fi network means browsing can be hacked, video calls seen, and financial information compromised.
Service: You may want to make sure two or more staff members are trained to troubleshoot. Consider keeping replacement parts on site so you can immediately replace a malfunctioning component as soon as the support team identifies one. You could also regularly review your support calls to see if there are repeating issues that should be addressed.
† excerpt from Hotel Wi-Fi is a Major Seller article by Leslie Lang
Hotel Internet Services has been a pioneer in the hospitality technology arena since 2003 installing wired and wireless Internet services, including exceptional 24/7 guest service monitoring and support. With over 150K room installations under their belt they understand the importance of creating a WiFi infrastructure on your property that will give your guests the best WiFi experience that they have come to expect.