The coronavirus pandemic has stalled the world. There is not a single facet of life that is unaffected—all the industries are facing the heat barring few. Industries like hospitality, travel, and tourism were among the most affected. Their operation stopped utterly. For them to come out of it is most challenging. Even the more prominent brands are in trouble. As the experts predict, that virus is going to stay with us for the time being. Now the call is “live with the virus,” but it is easier said than done. Having said this, gradually, people are gaining confidence. Some industries are getting momentum.
And as far as the hospitality industry is concerned, now all the stakeholders want to get going. People are now willing to get back to work. They are now less hesitant when it comes to travel. And with each day passing, we know this virus better. It is clear that if we take due precautions, we can protect ourselves. With this sentiment coming, the hospitality industry is also gaining confidence. They are all geared to operate in this new world, the new ecosystem. As the Hotel industry releases travel tips, the travelers are also excited to move with new normal.
The new safety guidelines
Recently American hotel and lodging association and similar other organizations around the world have released their safety guidelines. The new protocols are designed in a way that they help all the stakeholders. The safety of hotel employees is as important as the guests’. These guidelines are extensive but practical.
- Mandatory face cover:
All the guests and the hotel employees have to wear a face mask in all the indoor places mandatorily. And the physical distancing has to be followed in all the areas which are open for all.
- Contactless transactions:
Limiting man to man transaction is at the very fore these guidelines. The institutions are recommending everything that can minimize human interaction. Surprisingly, it is precisely the opposite of what is the norm in the pre-COVID world. But this is the reality now everyone has to live with now. They are recommending the use of online booking, check-in, check-out, and payments. That is something that is already in use; it’s all about promoting that practice.
There is a lot of thrust on essential cleanliness and health, which includes personal hygiene as well. The AHLA recommends daily cleaning all the occupied rooms. Giving incentives to guests, so they come forward and cooperate in the management of the practice.
The AHLA and other hospitality institutions are pretty much on the same page when it comes to functions. They recommend all the services, including room service delivery, should happen in a contactless manner.
- Reasonable restrictions:
The management of Covid-19 has a lot to do with personal restrain. At the time, when all governments and social health organizations are urging that people with coronavirus symptoms should not travel. The hospitality industry is also in need of up their guard at this front too and put reasonable restrictions. So the people with symptoms do not enter the hotel premise.
- Physical distancing:
One group of travelers should maintain at least six feet of distance from others. Employees should follow the same protocol in all the places on the premise, including the dining room and desks.
Pitching the safety to travelers
Looking at the severances of the virus, everyone-even, the most enthusiastic travelers, are showing some apprehensions. Even if these passionate group travel, the industry cannot meet its operational needs with these travelers.
They need to convince by and large all their clients. But now the question is- can they do it? Can they pitch the precautions they are taking in a way that all groups can take confidence from that? It is certainly not easy. Doing stuff your end is always comfortable than controlling things that you don’t control. Also, nobody is infallible, even if one is; one cannot ensure hundred percent safeties of consumers. Then what is the solution? You cannot keep the end consumers afraid all the time, and keep the industry running. It would help if you gave them confidence; because they also want to come out.
A way out
The solution lies in clarity and pragmatism. You give travelers confidence stating that you are taking all the precautions, which reduces the chances the spread up to a great extent. And make it clear if they cooperate, the probability of infection can reduce even further. That will make sure that travelers get the confidence to venture out. And understand that it’s a collective effort of which they are also a significant part.
After the publication of these guidelines and some promising pitches from the more prominent brands, the demand is rising. The market, which was at one time almost reduced to zero, is now gradually picking up. The industry can see a silver lining in this and leap of faith. But the troubles at occupancy front continue to sustain. The occupancy rates are still well below 50 percent, which is a cause of concern.
Maybe the more players from industry should publish promising pitches that the Hotel industry releases travel tips, which guarantees maximum safety. The message should go a long way and should be reassuring enough that it gives more and more travelers the required confidence.
It is no overestimation; if one says, the movement of trends is positive. And the perception can change very quickly. The hospitality industry should keep putting in efforts.
There is no denial of the fact that people concerned about their health when they venture out of their homes. At the same time, economic activities can also not remain shut forever. With the current knowledge, we know that it’s going to be a long haul. Then we need to prepare accordingly. It’s not just the hospitality industry; everything in every walk of our life needs to be changed in a way that aligns with our current needs. The developments in the hospitality industry are a welcome change.