Virtual Reality’s New Role in Hospitality
Virtual Reality (VR) is gaining more and more attention from businesses in a wide variety of industries. During the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of businesses in the hospitality sector have turned to VR in order to spark the desire to travel. But so have travel destinations, museums, iconic landmarks, theme parks, restaurants and more. But how are hotels - specifically - using VR during this particular time?
Wetting the Travel Appetite
Many hotels have used this time of low or no occupancy to upgrade, renovate and rejuvenate their properties. Why? It is important to come out the other side of the pandemic more appealing than ever before. After renovations are complete, hotels are filming their property in VR in order to showcase its beauty and appeal for weddings, MICE and conferences.
Hotels can then send a headset with preloaded VR content of their property to their top clients, prospective guests or even tour operators. Giving customers a sneak-peek into newly refurbished hotels during lockdown will trigger the dreaming stage of a holiday planning process from a guest perspective.
Sending this content to investors and board members is also necessary. It helps reassure such ones that their investment is doing well, corners weren’t cut during construction, and guests will be happy once they return.
Virtual Reality can also be used to train hotel staff members contactlessly. Filming certain setups and standards of your hotel or resort in VR allows hoteliers to remotely train new employees or offer refresher courses to seasoned staff. With the use of Augmented
Reality, overlaying pop-ups inside of the VR video ensures that even minor details and notes will be seen and that team members won’t miss important changes.
Safety Videos that center on new COVID-19 mandated processes are also necessary. Being able to film in VR will speed up team training and could even be shared with guests to give them an even better understanding of how the hotel is preparing itself for guests’ return, providing the reassurance that their choice in hotel is safe and clean.
A New Booking Channel
Tech-savvy guests with VR headsets are even able to book hotel rooms from their headsets in some cases. This ability will only become easier and more widespread among consumers with time. Consider this: VR headsets are generally much cheaper than an iPhone or Samsung Galaxy smartphone and will quickly become just as popular. As COVID-19 propels remote experiences to the forefront, VR will become the perfect opportunity for hotels to showcase their properties to the public and encourage bookings. This is an exciting time for hotels! It has been a long time since there was a new booking channel available to hotels. Hoteliers who get in on the VR game early, will be the ones to reap the rewards of virtual reality.