Last year, the hotel industry felt the impact of some serious changes. Airbnb picked up momentum, welcoming new travelers and disrupting the traditional model of a guest experience. Hilton unveiled plans that will use the power of mobile technology to literally unlock the future of the check-in process. Major brands such as Marriott announced that Wi-Fi access will be free for rewards club members.
So what’s next for hotels? You guessed it: more change.
As 2015 begins, the hotel industry will continue to evolve to better meet the needs of a new generation of guests. A recent survey from the American Hotel & Lodging Association reveals some of the most notable trends that are picking up speed.
1) So Fresh And So Healthy
Today’s guests are more focused on making better dietary decisions. As business travelers, leisure guests and conference attendees look for organic, all-natural and gluten-free foods, hotels are doing their part to simplify the search. This year, an all-time high number of respondents — 74 percent — indicate that they provide healthy menu choices.
SEE ALSO: Your Attendees Are Looking For A Healthy Lifestyle
2) The Parking Lot Is Going Green
Most guests have noticed what hotels are doing inside their walls to reduce their carbon footprints. From basic towel reuse programs to more advanced measures such as guest-conscious in-room lighting, the hotel industry has been wearing some big shoes in the eco-friendly movement. Now, it looks like they’re taking that work a few miles further. The AHLA survey shows that 11 percent of hotels have electric car charging stations, which marks a six-point increase from 2012.
SEE ALSO: 5 Eco-Friendly Venues
3) The Age Of Disappearing Amenities
While guests certainly care about free breakfast, HD television and online access, there are some old-school amenities that don’t matter as much anymore. The survey shows that more hotels are ditching newspaper delivery, in-room DVD players and mini bars.
SEE ALSO: Wait, This Hotel Room Does What?
4) Wi-Fi Without The Fees
Remember the days of clicking “accept” to agree to pay $14.95 per day to check your email? Those additional fees have nearly disappeared. Just 11 percent of respondents in the research indicate that they charge for in-room Internet services, a 12-point decline from 2012.
Curious what all these trends mean for costs? Check out “What Hotel Rates Will Look Like In 2015.”