It’s high time that the hotel industry accepts the fact that COVID-19 is here to stay for a while, and its effects will be felt throughout the industry long after the situation abates—especially for the hotel and tourism industry. If you run or own a hotel, you have to work even harder to make guests feel safe and comfortable.
While the market will surely regain its footing, it’s important that you do everything you can to ensure that you can get good business, not just in the latter part of the year, but the next ones to come.
Here are some things you need to consider:
Comply with the right protocols
Every government has a specific set of guidelines about the reopening of certain businesses, and you must check the rules, particularly in your area of business. After getting the information, the next step is to create a plan and communicate the critical protocols to your guests and staff.
Since the virus is expected to stay in the foreseeable future, there should be stringent measures to issue on your property to keep everyone safe. There should be social distancing rules, strict cleaning protocols, and more.
Let guests know that you care about their health and safety
Guests are already risking enough by not being cooped up at home and staying in your facility. The least you can do is to reduce points of contact all while ensuring that your guests realise that you care about their wellbeing.
Do your best to demonstrate proactiveness, not just because it’s required, but because you genuinely care about the safety of everyone in your property. Inform your guests of the several measures being implemented, the procedures being followed, the strategies being informed—basically everything you’re doing to keep them safe. It’s also recommended that you assign an emergency number and point of reference that they can contact in case of unforeseen circumstances.
Assess the impact of the outbreak
You probably know by now the extent to which you’ve taken a hit due to the pandemic. However, you have to brace yourself because, according to CBRE research, the hotel demand will take six to ten more months to recover. The recovery of RevPAR and ADR will even take longer.
It is then all the more essential to create a hotel recovery strategy, focusing on setting realistic expectations and KPIs. Come up with new financial plans and check if you can get some help from the government.
Prepare a contingency plan
If you solely rely on tourists, you’ll likely see your occupancy hitting rock bottom until next year. You need to look elsewhere and make drastic changes in your plan to ensure business continuity. There should be a contingency plan that outlines your alternative plans should your initial plans go haywire.
The most important thing to create is an accurate revenue forecast for the next few months. You should have an estimated downfall, review and reduce non-essential spending, freeze hiring new positions, reduce labour cost and operating hours. It would help if you cut costs wherever possible.
The road to recovery is a tough one, but if you go out of your way to ensure that your property will thrive, then you can come out of this crisis stronger. Make sure to create backup and contingency plans, do a thorough assessment of your operations and services, and ensure the health and safety of the guests.
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