AI is no longer a futuristic concept; it’s a present reality reshaping how we live, work, and play.
Nowhere is its impact more profound than in the hospitality industry — where AI is redefining the guest experience and revolutionizing hotel operations in substantial ways.
In this article, you will learn more about:
- How AI is changing the hospitality industry and empowering hoteliers to deliver unforgettable guest experiences.
- 7 surprising ways hoteliers like you use AI to streamline hotel operations & boost profitability.
- How artificial intelligence handles complex data analysis, marketing, dynamic pricing & more.
Let’s get started.
The AI Revolution Has Arrived
AI is the word on everyone’s lips at the moment. But beyond buzzwords and beyond ChatGPT, advances in technology have made AI more specialized and powerful than ever before.
That’s especially true for the hospitality industry.
We’ve heard (and will keep hearing) talk of robot staff for the next few years — from Crowne Plaza’s delivery robot to Japan’s Henna na Hotel’s cyborg staff — these solutions are still prohibitively expensive.
The most important use of AI in the hospitality industry lies in software applications. Think smart chatbots that truly understand guests’ needs, wants, and preferences. Think smart chatbots that can provide everything from dining to nightlife recommendations.
Hoteliers have welcomed AI with open arms because it can handle tasks that are either beyond our human abilities or not quite in our wheelhouse. AI is turning the tables in the hospitality industry — creating incredible guest experiences and boosting business performance.
AI is essentially a tech whiz that can understand what people are saying, spot patterns, and make smart decisions. AI is becoming an even more powerful tool, and it’s finding its groove in various industries, including our beloved hospitality sector.
AI works around the clock. It doesn’t need coffee breaks, doesn’t call in sick, and doesn’t get frustrated. When used well, AI can save you money and enhance guest experience — all essential ingredients for a successful hotel business.
Learn More: Embracing the Digital Revolution: Transforming Front Desk Operations in Hospitality
Believe The Hype: AI Is That Good
AI integration is shaking up how hotels connect with guests, supercharge their efficiency, and drive revenue growth. We reached out to our network of hotel industry veterans relying on AI, and asked them, “What are the most significant benefits of using AI?” Here’s what they had to say:
- AI Enhances Customer Experience. It remembers guest preferences, tracks interactions, purchases, and feedback to craft unique experiences, from tailored room setups to mouth-watering dining suggestions.
- AI Improves Efficiency. AI isn’t just a guest’s best friend; it’s a hotel’s too. It effortlessly gathers data from various touchpoints, predicts guest needs — allowing you to redeploy your human staff as needed.
- AI Drives Growth. AI is a powerhouse that automates numerous back-office tasks. This slashes errors and boosts efficiency, especially when handling complex tasks like revenue reconciliation, or guest profile analysis.
Next up: We’re going to take a look at how hoteliers like you are using AI in the wild.
7 Ways Hoteliers Are Using AI To Enhance Guest Experience
By 2030, AI could contribute a staggering $15.7 trillion to the global economy, surpassing the combined current economic output of both China and India. This transformative force offers unprecedented opportunities for growth and innovation.
But this digital revolution isn’t without its concerns.
The fear of automation looms large, raising questions about the role of humans in this AI-driven landscape. It’s crucial to recognize that AI is not an adversary but a catalyst for improvement. It’s here to enhance the guest experience and empower hoteliers.
For those in the hospitality industry, seizing AI’s potential can elevate guest satisfaction while lightening the workforce’s load. This is particularly vital in the post-COVID era, where the hospitality sector is still recovering its staffing levels.
To stay profitable and competitive, hotels must embrace every available tool, and AI emerges as a formidable ally in this pursuit.
Here are 7 ways that hotel businesses like yours are leveraging the power of AI.
A Digital Concierge
If you’ve recently checked into a Hilton hotel, you might have already met Connie. Named after Conrad Hilton, is Hilton’s latest groundbreaking hotel concierge.
Connie taps into IBM’s Watson platform (yes, the same AI that aced Jeopardy!). It’s not your typical information retriever; it’s a dynamic, knowledgeable assistant for guests. Connie doesn’t just answer questions; it learns from each interaction, constantly honing its responses and services to craft a personalized and unforgettable guest experience.
You don’t need a partnership with IBM to provide this level of service — many hotel technology companies offer excellent AI assistants. And with them, hoteliers now have a tool that not only enhances in-person customer service but also sets a new industry standard for excellence.
But hold your horses; here’s a cautionary tale from Dubai.
One hotel thought they had a winning virtual concierge AI product, ready to impress their guests. However, things took an unexpected turn when their flagship AI recommended that guests should consider staying at a rival hotel instead of theirs.
The key takeaway? Always test your AI thoroughly before you launch.
Learn More: Six Practical Tips For Surviving The Hospitality Labor Shortage Crisis
2. Instant Answers, Endless Convenience: AI Chatbots in Hospitality
AI chatbots work tirelessly — 24/7, addressing guest queries with a speed that human interactions can’t hope to match. Whether guests have questions about room availability or require assistance with booking changes, AI chatbots stand at the ready, delivering immediate and accurate responses.
Unbound by business hours, AI chatbots ensure that every inquiry receives a prompt response.
This commitment to swift and efficient customer service sets a new gold standard in the hospitality industry. It’s a testament to how technology can be harnessed to enhance guest experience.
Learn More: DuveAI – empowering AI to give hospitality a personal touch
3. AI Advances in Data Analysis
AI-powered data analysis is a hotelier’s secret weapon.
It’s able to sift through vast amounts of information, uncovering key insights into customer behavior and preferences – giving hotel owners a competitive edge.
AI analyzes guest actions, preferences, and feedback, providing hoteliers with a deep understanding of their clientele.
Here’s where it gets interesting: AI can unearth negative reviews and take action. You can have your AI:
- Craft automatic replies to negative reviews, tailored to the guest’s profile and issue.
- Automatically tag a senior manager in the case of negative reviews so you can take action and see what went wrong.
- AI can also respond to positive reviews, thanking guests for their stay. All because a guest has checked out, that doesn’t mean that the opportunity to showcase your sense of hospitality is over.
Instead of spending hours trawling reviews and crafting individual responses, your staff can dedicate their energies to providing exceptional in-person service. This not only simplifies your employees’ lives but also ensures that every guest receives the personal attention and care they deserve.
Read More: Why There’s A Wrong Way To Implement Tech Into Your Hotel And How To Avoid It
4. AI: Call Me, Maybe?
Voice-activated AI technologies redefine how guests interact with their surroundings.
Imagine a weary traveler arriving at their hotel room. With a simple voice command, they can adjust the room’s lighting to their preferred ambiance, set the thermostat to their ideal temperature, or request extra towels for added comfort.
This not only elevates guest satisfaction but also embodies the forward-thinking approach of hoteliers in catering to modern travelers’ evolving preferences. Guests no longer need to fumble with switches, thermostats, or phones; they can effortlessly control their environment with their voice.
This technology is already here.
Amazon’s Alexa AI offers a hospitality option, allowing guests to check the weather, play their favorite songs, order room service and even check out — all without talking to a (human) member of staff.
Read More: Elevate your Guest Experience Using Hotel Automation
5. Smart Revenue Optimization – AI-Driven Dynamic Pricing
Another use of AI? Doing the heavy lifting on dynamic pricing calculations.
AI can analyze a multitude of data sources — including historical booking patterns, demand, competitor pricing, weather forecasts, and local events, to optimize room rates in real-time.
AI is capable of continuously assessing changing market conditions and competitor pricing, allowing hotels to adjust rates instantly. This flexibility maximizes revenue during peak demand periods and avoids underselling during slower times.
AI-powered analytics provide accurate demand forecasts, minimizing the risk of overpricing or underpricing rooms. This helps hotels strike a balance between occupancy and rates, optimizing your RevPAR.
Learn More: What is RevPAR How to Calculate and increase it
6. Real-Time Language Assistance – Chatbot Translators in Hospitality
Hablas Espanol? If you or your staff aren’t fluent in a guest’s language, the days of flicking through a dictionary or pointing at pictures are over.
AI chatbot translators can recognize and translate guest inquiries in real-time, enhancing communication.
Imagine Mr. Li, a guest from China, navigating a luxury Parisian hotel. Language barriers could have hindered his experience, but the hotel’s chatbot translator came to his rescue. With a tap on his smartphone, he effortlessly communicated his needs in Mandarin, and the chatbot translated them into English, facilitating smooth interactions with hotel staff.
This goes beyond Google Translate.
AI-powered Chatbots can talk to your guests like a real human. Chatbots are erasing the boundaries of language differences, enriching travel experiences, and making the world a more connected and welcoming place for all.
Learn More: Mid-Range Hotel Marketing With Practical Examples
7. AI-powered Upselling
AI brings a new level of personalization to upselling, going beyond generic offers to cater to individual guest profiles.
You might have a business traveler who often stays at your hotel.
AI would recognize his guest profile and suggest a room upgrade with a spacious desk, perfect for his work needs. Or remember that he’s a vegetarian and recommend a new restaurant around the corner that he’d love.
Perhaps you host a couple on a romantic getaway. AI may recommend a cozy suite with a breathtaking view and a bottle of champagne waiting in your room. All of which are upsells that the business traveler would be less thrilled to receive.
That’s because a one-size-fits-all approach to upselling does not work.
AI allows you to suggest upsells that are relevant and more likely to succeed — making every guest feel special and creating memorable experiences tailored precisely to their preferences.
Learn More: 4 Ways to Use Guest Data to Boost Your Hotel Sales
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. How are hotels using AI?
By looking at data from places like online travel sites, social media, guest reviews, and the hotel’s booking history, AI can predict how many hotel rooms will be needed in the future. This helps hotels use their resources better, manage rooms, and plan how many staff they’ll need.
Q2. How does artificial intelligence affect hotels?
AI can make hotels run better by doing tasks like booking rooms and contactless check-ins automatically. This means hotel staff can spend more time giving guests great service.
Q3. What are the benefits of AI in hotels?
AI in hotels is that it takes care of tasks that are repetitive and eat up a lot of time. Handling booking requests or going through paperwork can be done by AI. Plus, because AI can handle these repetitive tasks so efficiently, it can save hotels money in the long run.
Ready To Transform Your Hotel & Your Brand?
AI’s emergence in the hospitality sector is more than just a passing trend; it’s a sweeping transformation poised to revolutionize guest experiences and redefine the industry.
But AI isn’t here to supplant the human touch in hospitality. It’s a powerful ally that empowers our staff to focus on what truly matters: forging genuine connections with our guests.
Not sure how to get started?
Join thousands of hoteliers from around the world already leveraging the power of AI, with Duve.