Amenities for the Millennial Traveller

In our grandparents’ day, travelers looked for features in hotels such as a swimming pool, the choice of smoking or non-smoking rooms, and a continental breakfast. In-room coffee makers were such a huge advancement in hotel luxury that hotels to this day will list that as featured amenities.

With digital technology now being such an important component of home life, it’s natural to want to bring that convenience on the road. But what will the coming generation of travelers – the Millennials –  look for in hotel accommodations? More importantly, what have these travelers come to expect as standard, as well as what features are they willing to pay extra for?

The days of having a desktop computer and a printer in the lobby—the so-called hotel business centers—are quickly fading. Now that it’s common for hotels to offer—either complimentary or for a low fee—in-room high-speed internet access and Wi-Fi connectivity, establishments are competing for  business by improving their technology amenities and offerings.

One of the first innovations has been the availability of loaner devices, like Kindles and tablets, as well as widely spaced power strips in rooms to accommodate guests’ device chargers. Some hotels are even providing room televisions that have plug-in capabilities to allow guests to run their devices through the large screen.

A very simple tech offering is the environmentally conscious replacement of the complimentary daily newspaper with access to full-length digital editions via consumers’ own devices. For far less than the cost of printing and delivering an adequate number of print copies, many of which go to waste, hotels can provide their guests with the day’s news without the cost and impact of print.

A more interesting innovation is branded hotel apps that let travelers do everything from search for vacancies, book a reservation, and complete the check-in and check-out processes. These location-specific apps also offered information and discounts on area dining and attractions, helping consumers make the choice to book with that specific hotel in order to formalize all of their needs in one app.

For travelers who don’t have access to a portable device, hotels like Vancouver’s Opus and the Hotel Beaux Arts Miami offer in-room iPads which are loaded with an app for calling room service.  By offering loaner iPads to guests, the Opus immediately saw a 40% increase in room service revenue, andthe  Beaux Arts  saved $30,000 a year in printing costs with their app that also connects guests to the hotel computer system.

With nearly 20% of travel time taken up by device use, and data revealing that the average traveler carries at least three devices, hotels are expected to start offering even more tech upgrades as part of their standard room amenities in order to compete for consumer loyalty. Everything from the booking process to in-room thermostat and television control is already being relegated to consumer devices, and the options for technology integration will only improve.

To learn more about digital newspaper service for your hotel, visit

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