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08/19/2013

Internet Access Remains Top Gripe for Hotel Guest Satisfaction

Following two years of declines, hotel guest satisfaction has  increased significantly, reaching its highest levels in the past seven years, according to the J.D. Power 2013 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study.
 
The study, now in its 17th year, measures overall guest satisfaction across eight hotel segments: luxury; upper upscale; upscale; midscale full service; midscale; economy/budget; upper extended stay; and extended stay. Seven key factors are examined within each segment to determine overall satisfaction: reservation; check-in/check-out; guest room; food and beverage; hotel services; hotel facilities; and cost and fees.[1]
 
Overall guest satisfaction averages 777 on a 1,000-point scale, up 20 points from 2012. This marks the highest satisfaction index score for the hotel industry since the introduction of the current study methodology in 2006. Satisfaction has increased in all seven factors, with the largest increases in reservation, cost and fees, and check-in/check-out.
 
The study finds that the number of interactions guests have with the hotel staff may have a significant  impact on satisfaction. Overall satisfaction is highest among guests who interact with four or more staff types, excluding the check-in staff, at 856, which is 79 points higher than industry average. Satisfaction drops to 724 when guests have no other interactions with staff types beyond check-in--53 points below industry average.
 
The following hotel brands rank highest in guest satisfaction in their respective segments:
-- Luxury: The Ritz-Carlton (for a fourth consecutive year)
-- Upper Upscale: Kimpton Hotels
-- Upscale: Hyatt Place
-- Midscale Full Service: Holiday Inn (for a third consecutive year)
-- Midscale: Drury Hotels (for an eighth consecutive year[2])
-- Economy/Budget: Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham
-- Upper Extended Stay: Homewood Suites[3]
-- Extended Stay: TownePlace Suites
 
While Internet usage during a hotel stay continues to steadily increase, it remains the top problem experienced by guests. Among guests who experienced a problem during their hotel stay, 31 percent had an issue with their Internet service in terms of connection and/or speed. Interestingly, overall satisfaction among guests who experienced difficulties connecting to the Internet is 133 points lower than among those who did not have problems, whether Internet access was included in the room rate or not.
 
The study also finds that when guests choose a hotel primarily because of price, satisfaction is significantly lower than when they choose a hotel based on other criteria. Among the most satisfied guests overall are the 7 percent categorized in the study as scrutinizers--or those who seek out information through online hotel review sites and use it as the basis for their booking--at 114 points above industry average.

Key Findings
  • Overall guest satisfaction has improved to 777, up 20 points from 2012.
  • This marks the highest satisfaction index score for the hotel industry since the introduction of the current study methodology in 2006.
  • The number of interactions a guest has with the hotel staff may have a significant impact on overall satisfaction.

 
The 2013 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study is based on responses gathered between July 2012 and May 2013 from more than 68,700 guests from Canada and the United States who stayed in a hotel in North America between June 2012 and May 2013.