Hoteliers are embracing high-tech, low-touch payments

With the reopening of international borders and the return of high-profile events such as Formula 1 in Melbourne and Vivid Sydney, hotel occupancy is on the rise. And hoteliers are adapting to meet the changing needs of customers for fuel recovery.

Due to the pandemic, customer expectations are different. They are now looking for high-tech, low-touch options, especially when it comes to payment, whether at check-in, for predefined packages or for à la carte goods and services.

An integrated payment platform allows guests to pay easily with minimal contact and check in and out seamlessly on their own devices, while empowering hoteliers with key information.

According to Mark Rademaker, Global Head of Hospitality at Adyen, a low-touch environment can have a positive impact on the guest experience.

“Digitizing the customer journey doesn’t have to come at the expense of the customer experience,” he said.

“In fact, it’s quite the opposite, as frictionless payments can reduce time spent on manual tasks, freeing up even more time for staff to better engage customers.”

An example of this can be seen at Raffles Hotel Singapore, where payments are key to enabling frictionless and personalized services.

“Providing bespoke and authentic service is at the heart of the legendary Raffles experience,” said Rademaker.

“Thanks to Adyen, Raffles Hotel Singapore has propelled its unified commerce offering, delivering simpler, faster and more customer-centric checkout experiences across all sales channel touchpoints, online and offline – including suite bookings, restaurants and bars, Raffles Spa and Raffles Boutique.

“Imagine your guest being able to arrive at your hotel, check in, dine, shop or treat themselves – and never have to touch a payment terminal during their entire stay.”

Simplified system

When various accounting systems are in operation in a hotel, it can sometimes cause confusion and lead to reduced efficiency. And with labor shortages hampering the industry’s recovery, it’s no surprise that more and more hotels are turning to automation to improve their bottom line.

This is where a streamlined system can bring everything together efficiently, including payments for reservations, restaurants, in-room dining, day spas, events, meetings and conferences and more.

A number of payment consolidation platforms have emerged with systems designed to help a hotel streamline its financial ecosystem and improve business efficiency.

“We know that hotels work with multiple vendors and systems, and many hotels are looking for ways to address the challenges, including integrating both old and new infrastructure,” Rademaker said.

“Finding a solution that integrates smoothly with a hotel’s entire technology stack will help streamline processes and costs.”

Increased data security is essential when introducing such systems, to ensure that customer information is protected.

“Hotels work with many third parties, systems and external distribution channels to support guest reservations,” Rademaker said.

“It can be extremely difficult and complex, and the burden of managing so many different payment systems often falls on the hotel.”

With the added complexities of the EU Payment Services Directive 2 and other regulations aimed at improving payment security, hotels need to get ahead of the game in combating fraud and securing their guest’s payments, said Rademaker.

According to Ayden, automation will be key to managing the upsurge in guest volume.

With Ayden, hotels can adopt a single, end-to-end payment platform that lets them experiment without sacrificing usability, security, or consistency. Ayden frees hoteliers from the burden of payment card industry (PCI) compliance, allowing them to make payments an innovative force – instead of a business-as-usual process with downside risks .

Download Adyen’s Hidden Star Checklist to assess your current payment setup and unlock your hotel’s growth.

This content was created in collaboration with Adyen and hotel management.

Peter M. Doran