The IHG One Rewards mobile app is redefining the travel experience with a greater emphasis on customer satisfaction – and it's earning rave reviews. The app's intuitive design and new features seamlessly guide guests through their booking journey from inspiration to customizing their in-room stay experience, all in the palm of their hands. As IHG's fastest-growing booking channel, the app has driven more than half of all digital bookings in 2023 and is the main platform for loyalty engagement. With the ability to inspire adventure, maximize loyalty earnings, and seamlessly integrate into the in-hotel experience, the app has received high ratings of 4.9 stars on the Apple store and 4.8 stars on the Android store.
"At IHG, we believe that technology can redefine hospitality and our IHG One Rewards mobile app is a testament to that. We knew that by placing our app at the center of delivering choice and control to our guests, we could stand out in the industry," said Jolie Fleming, Senior Vice President, Guest Products and Platforms at IHG Hotels & Resorts. "With new features rolling out weekly, we continue to offer greater customization and increased guest engagement through this channel. We have seen positive reviews from our most loyal guests who use the app devotedly and can't travel without it!"
The IHG One Rewards app is packed with new features that set it apart from other hotel apps, including:
New! Travel Wishlists. An in-app exclusive experience, members can now save properties to their Wishlists page to view later – easily allowing them to track future stays or add past stays they enjoyed to their list.
Wi-Fi Auto Connect. When enabled, this feature automatically connects a guest's mobile device to a property's Wi-Fi as soon as they walk through the doors. A one-time sign on is required and takes only two taps to join. More than 1 million users have signed up globally.
Room charges in real time. Guests at more than 3,000 hotels across the Americas can view their room charges as they happen during their stay. Available on the Reservation Summary page, guests can see in-room charges such as room service and dining charges.
Room details and customization. Guests can now easily see the size of the room booked, so there are no surprises when they show up! Plus, IHG has made it easier for guests to personalize their stays, whether that's by booking a room with a view of the mountains or selecting one with more space.
Seamless loyalty benefits experience. IHG One Rewards members can conveniently explore their current loyalty tier benefits and discover the exciting rewards they can unlock as they progress to higher tiers, as well as access and redeem Milestone Rewards, including free nights, food and beverage vouchers and complimentary suite upgrades.
Updated Wallet. Google and Apple Wallet users can add their IHG One Rewards membership and reservations to their digital wallet allowing for convenience and ease during travel.
More languages. The re-architected app is available in 20 languages across six global and Greater China focused app stores.
Jolie Fleming added: "Our app is designed for a new kind of loyalty program and for a new kind of traveler. We designed this app with our customers and are proud to say that it has exceeded expectations. The app's exceptional adoption rate, positive user feedback, and transformative impact on guest experiences has reinforced IHG's standing as a global leader in redefining hospitality through technology."
The IHG One Rewards mobile app also offers members a Best Price Guarantee with no hidden fees; and the ability to track the availability of rooms in their favorite hotels. Plus, guests are able to use guest service support and chat directly with customer care representatives directly in the app. And, for our top tier Diamond Elite members, they get priority access to Dedicated Diamond Support through the app.
The future of the IHG One Rewards mobile app
The mobile app has come out of a transformational year and new updates are always on the horizon. Upcoming features include the launch of Apple AirPlay at IHG Hotels & Resorts and virtual 360° tours of select Hotel Indigo properties globally. Not to mention, guests will soon be able to share Wishlists with friends and family, making the travel booking experience even more engaging and fun.
Presto Signs CKE Franchise StarCorp’s 58 Carl’s Jr. Locations
Presto Automation Inc., one of the largest drive-thru automation technology providers in the hospitality industry, announced a newly signed agreement that demonstrates the company’s continued momentum and strengths in technology, enterprise sales, integration, and implementation.
Presto signed CKE Franchise Group StarCorp and all of its 58 Carl’s Jr. locations, where it will be the only Voice AI vendor. After a successful and competitive pilot at 2 stores lasting more than 6 months, StarCorp decided to launch Presto Voice at full scale. Presto was able to achieve a 91% upsell offer rate during the pilot period. The companies are planning to jointly roll out these locations in the coming months.
Presto is currently taking several new Voice locations live for its customers each week, which it believes is a testament to the positive feedback it has received from customers and restaurant guests to date.
“We are delighted that StarCorp has signed its Carl’s Jr. locations with Presto after an extensive pilot and believe that action speaks volumes,” said Dan Mosher, President of Presto. “StarCorp has been an incredible partner, and this expanded partnership is a further proof point of the benefits of our Voice solution.”
“We are very excited to be working with Presto,” said Warren Forsythe, President of StarCorp. “We have a standard of excellence to uphold at StarCorp, and we chose Presto’s solution as it delivers on our expectations of the technology, including driving increased revenue and more efficient operations, which we believe will be essential for all restaurants.”
In celebration of World Tourism Day, Sleap.io has announced the launch of its Web3 hotel booking platform. Taking a leap into the future of travel, Sleap.io seamlessly incorporates cutting edge decentralized technology and cryptocurrency to deliver an unparalleled game changing user experience.
User-Focused Booking Simplified
Sleap.io, users can effortlessly connect their cryptocurrency wallets with popular options like Metamask and Coinbase Wallet to access exclusive user rates. When users initiate a search for accommodation, the platform goes a step beyond the conventional booking process by minting the request into a unique non fungible token (NFT). Every completed booking is also minted into its own unique NFT, offering not just a confirmation but the promise of future transferability and additional layers of utility. This innovative approach allows hotels and partners to respond with personalized real time offers to Sleap.io users.
Web3 in Travel: Just the Tip of the Iceberg
The integration of Web3 technology into the travel industry is still in its early stages, but recent initiatives by major airlines like Lufthansa and Etihad signify that a larger transformation is underway. With specialized blockchains like Camino Network focusing solely on travel, it's evident that we're only at the beginning of this monumental shift. Michael Ros, the Founder of Sleap.io, shares his thoughts, stating, "Being the pioneering hotel booking platform operating on the blockchain fills me with immense pride. However, it's not merely about being the first; it's about our commitment to excelling in this emerging Web3 era. The adoption of Web3 is rapidly gaining momentum, and we are enthusiastic about leading the way in this industry-wide evolution."
Industry Recognition and Financial Backing
In July, Sleap.io successfully closed an investment round featuring prominent investors such as Falkensteiner Ventures, Next Floor, Ralf Usbeck, and Tectris.vc. Alongside this financial backing, the platform has been honored with several accolades, including winning the Epic Web3 Awards in June. Sleap.io is also in the running for Europe's Top Web3 Startups at European Blockchain Convention in Barcelona and has been nominated for the Travolution Award, further solidifying its standing in both the Web3 and travel industries.
Strategic Partnerships: A New Milestone for Web3
An influx of high profile partnership announcements in Q4 of 2023. Sleap.io is not just forming alliances but is strategically embedding itself within the larger Web3 ecosystem. The platform is partnering with some of the largest Web3 companies and communities, creating building blocks for a robust, interconnected Web3 network.
Blockchain’s Role in Disrupting Costs
By harnessing blockchain technology, Sleap.io substantially reduces transactional fees and commissions, traditionally as high as 15-30% of the average booking value. The platform is built on the Camino Network blockchain, which is tailored for the travel industry and offers high cost-effectiveness. Thanks to the decentralized nature of cryptocurrency, the need for traditional banking systems is eliminated, resulting in significant cost savings for travelers. This financial innovation underscores Sleap.io's commitment to providing a more affordable and transparent booking experience.
Advanced Personalization Through AI
Set for a Q1 2024 release, Sleap.io will introduce an AI driven feature that provides travelers with highly personalized hotel recommendations based on user preferences. Dynamic photo sorting will enrich the visual journey, with continuous learning algorithms refining the user booking experience over time.
Unveiling Market Potential
As the global hospitality market reached nearly 4.7 trillion U.S. dollars in 2023 and is forecast to grow to 5.8 trillion U.S. dollars by 2027, the opportunities for Sleap.io are monumental. With projections indicating that the number of crypto wallet users will reach 1 billion by 2025, Sleap.io is ideally situated to cater to a high spending, tech savvy demographic.
Sleap.io is not just offering a new way to book hotels; it’s revolutionizing the entire experience of travel. By creating a user centric, efficient, and hyper personalized ecosystem, Sleap.io is at the forefront of redefining how the world engages with travel and hospitality.
Panera Bread Partners with ezCater to Scale its Workplace Catering
ezCater, a provider of corporate food solutions, announced a partnership with Panera Bread to bring the brand’s iconic soups, salads, sandwiches, and more to the ezCater marketplace. The partnership combines ezCater’s extensive reach and authority in food for work with Panera’s deep brand recognition, delicious and diverse menu, and influence as a market leader in fast casual.
Businesses can now order catering from nearly half of Panera’s bakery-cafes across the U.S. on the ezCater website and mobile app. In the coming months, Panera and ezCater intend to continue to add hundreds more locations to the ezCater marketplace as they continue to roll out the partnership.
“Not only is Panera a market leader in fast casual, but they’re also a powerhouse in catering and one of our customers’ most requested brands,” said Mike O’Hanlon, Chief Partnerships Officer, ezCater. “We’re bringing the comfort and warmth of Panera’s crave-worthy offerings and the convenience and reliability of ezCater to workplaces across the country. We’re excited to launch this partnership and continue expanding it in the months and years to come.”
From their beloved bagel packs and breakfast sandwiches to iconic soups, sandwiches, and delicious salads, Panera offers extensive options and variety for workplaces to satisfy all of their employees’ preferences. New catering offerings, such as the Toasted Baguette Sandwiches Assortment, deliver an abundant meal crafted with freshly prepared ingredients. With the new partnership, businesses can easily order food from Panera for all their food for work needs, while having complete visibility and control over their food spend through ezCater.
“As two of the most established providers of food for work, Panera is excited to partner with ezCater to provide workplaces with even more access to our delicious menu of soups, salads, sandwiches, and more,” said Lisa Hamblet, Vice President, Off-Premise, Panera Bread. “An ideal complement to Panera’s existing catering service, ezCater adds additional reach and scale to expand to more businesses and take Panera Catering to the next level.”
ezCater has more than 100,000 restaurants and caterers on its platform, from local independent restaurants to national chains. With its extensive expertise in corporate food solutions, ezCater helps its restaurant partners manage, analyze, and grow their catering businesses. To learn more about the ezCater Catering Growth Platform, visit www.ezcater.com/grow.
To place a catering order from Panera or learn more about ezCater Corporate Accounts, visit ezcater.com.
IRIS Unveils New Guide to Empower Hoteliers to Choose the Ultimate Digital Ordering Platform
IRIS announces the launch of its latest ebook, ‘The Hotelier's Guide to Choosing a Digital F&B Ordering Platform’ to empower operators to boost revenue, streamline operations, and elevate the guest experience.
Ahead of the busy festive season, and at a time when rising costs and staffing continue to bring challenges, the question of how hospitality operators can optimise resources and realise revenue ambitions has never been more pressing. Increasingly they are turning to technology for the solution and for many that lies with digital F&B ordering. However, with a growing number of platforms, providers and integrations on the market it can be difficult to know where to start and crucially, how to select the right platform.
The latest guide from the expert team at IRIS includes the following:
An overview of online F&B ordering platforms
How to assess what you require from a system, the results you want to achieve and the challenges you need it to resolve
The key features and functionalitiesto look for to ensure you get the best fit for your hotel or restaurant
How digital dining benefits your staff, your business and your guests, helping businesses stay competitive and efficient
Digital F&B ordering has seen a phenomenal growth in both its development and adoption from both sides of the menu – operators and guests. Operators have been swift to employ it as a dynamic and engaging way to showcase their F&B offering. It brings with it the agility and flexibility to update menus at the touch of a button alongside remote and real time access that can be utilised by team members. Coupled with integrations to both the PMS and POS it also has the added benefit of improving service times, securing payments and boosting profits. For guests the convenience of being able to browse, order and pay from the palm of their hand also has an increasingly positive impact on their own experience.
Kate Fuller, Senior Marketing Manager at IRIS comments, “Our latest guide has been designed to offer hospitality operators a clear, practical roadmap for digital F&B ordering. The demand for a mobile-first experience from guests has seen an exponential rise in recent times which shows no signs of abating.
“Operators need to ensure they understand not only the capabilities of digital F&B ordering but also choose the right platform that is fit for purpose in their venue. Then they can be sure they are delivering the best ROI for their staff, their guests and their bottom line.”
The IRIS Hotelier’s Guide to Choosing a Digital F&B Ordering Platform is available to download here
Knowland Account Alerts Feature Uses Push Intelligence to Provide Hotels with a Competitive Advantage in Account-Based Sales
Knowland, a provider of data-as-a-service insights on meetings and events for hospitality, announced Account Alerts, an enhancement to its core platform. The delivery of automated email alerts once a day helps sales teams save time, stay informed, and react early to revenue opportunities. Consolidated email notifications will be pushed to the user anytime recent account activity matches the individual filters set by the user.
Today’s analytics platforms focus heavily on pull intelligence, meaning users must enter a portal and pull the analyzed data on demand. Using push intelligence, Knowland Account Alerts delivers actionable data directly to the end user, giving them what they need when they need it to make key decisions. By receiving account booking insights proactively, users can better determine what accounts need attention, creating greater efficiency and increasing revenue.
Shift share and save time by increasing sales productivity – Sales teams and managers at both the property and above-property level will no longer have to search Knowland to see if their targeted accounts have recently met. Once-a-day emails are sent directly to salespeople, notifying them about current activities with the accounts that matter most.
Stay informed on lost and turned down business – Sales leaders will better understand when and where targeted accounts are meeting as soon as they become available in the Knowland platform. By following key accounts and identifying opportunities, sales managers can track lost business and see if a group they thought they had locked down is booking with a competitor.
Above-property insight – Above-property sales leaders will gain insight into enterprise sales teams to inform future sales strategies. Gaining account knowledge that provides data about targeted accounts as early as possible provides the competitive advantage needed to get ahead of future RFPs.
Jessica Carey, vice president of customer operations, Knowland, said: “Sales teams need access to potential and current customer data as soon as possible, without spending time searching for what they need. We have listened to our customers, and our ongoing innovation ensures they get what they need delivered directly to them. By utilizing push intelligence, we deliver the knowledge needed to support sales engagement strategies and drive new revenue.”