UK hotel owners are missing out on the chance to build up a guest’s sense of excitement before their trip, according to the results of a study by TripAdvisor.
The findings, from the latest instalment of TripBarometer, focused on the psychology of travel and questioned more than 53,000 travellers and hoteliers around the world on the motivations behind travellers’ holiday choices, traveller emotions at the various stages of a holiday and the post-trip impact of travel.
Nearly two thirds of UK hoteliers (62%) said their main priority is to ensure a smooth and efficient process at booking.
Yet, only one in eight (12%) of UK hoteliers say their priority is to provide guests with local information about their destination at the time of booking, while the same percentage say their priority is to make guests feel as though the holiday has already begun.
However, for a majority of global travellers the main emotion felt at the booking stage is one of excitement (54%), suggesting there is more UK hoteliers could be doing to take advantage travellers’ feelings of excitement right from the start.
The research found that excitement peaks during lead-up and arrival, with travellers feeling most fulfilled upon returning home from a holiday.
Two thirds of UK hoteliers (65%) encourage their guests to write online reviews following their stay, and to recommend the hotel to family and friends.
Furthermore, those UK hoteliers who see a guest return rate of over 50% are more likely to prioritise ‘beginning to build a lasting relationship’ (39%) during the lead up to a guests stay.
“The results of the TripBarometer highlight that hoteliers can stand out from the competition by providing unique and enriching experiences. And while it’s no surprise that travellers tend to be excited when they book and prepare for a trip, hoteliers are missing an opportunity to capitalise on that excitement and begin building a lasting relationship with their guests. Only a minority of hotels are currently making this a priority, but those who do also tend to receive more repeat guests,” said Marc Charron, president, TripAdvisor for Business.