It may be a style statement to come late, but some guests arrive unfashionably early. In hospitality industry, it happens very often when front office encounters early arrivals. A few days ago, I witnessed a situation where a hotel’s front desk was feeling frantic when guests arrived early and their room wasn’t ready yet. For a hotel, it’s a time that can make it stand out from rest of the crowd or may throw it off the game. The front desk of that hotel was lucky to have cool guests who kept calm until the hotel could make arrangements and escort them to their room. But many times, guests get apprehensive when they are made to wait.
As a hotelier, valuing every minute of the guests goes a long way. It makes them feel valued and they don’t mind spending a few minutes in check-in procedure. In this piece of writing, I am sharing some tips that can help hoteliers and front desk in handling difficult situations of early guest arrival. Applying them, hotels can ensure that guests are taken care of, especially when they have arrived early.
Welcome the guests and check their details
First things first, guests should not be felt awful about their early arrival. They may be tired after their journey, and trust me, a smiling face with greetings like ‘Good Morning/Good Evening’ or ‘we’re so glad to see you’ can make them feel good. They also can be treated with a welcome drink. Even when your guests are aware that they’re early, don’t make them feel they are troubling you.
You can keep them occupied with stuff like finishing check-in details, or inform them about the services they have chosen during their stay at the hotel. In addition, front desk can verify details on check out time.
Tell them politely that their room isn’t ready
Instead of confusing them or making excuses, tell them honestly that their room isn’t ready yet as the check-in time is ____hrs. Try saying something like ‘I am extremely sorry; unfortunately the room that you’ve booked isn’t ready yet’. Plus, they should also be made sure that the best efforts will be put to ensure that the accommodation gets ready as soon as possible. In the meantime, they can be offered tea/coffee or other services to entertain them.
Speed up the process
Ask the guests to please excuse you so that necessary arrangements can be made to ensure they get the room as soon as possible. Coordination should be made with housekeeping to inspect the rooms. Tell them to make the room ready. Inform the guests that their room will be ready within _____minutes.
Once the room is ready, assist the guests
After ensuring that the room is clean and all the necessary arrangements have been made, provide key card to the guest. Tell them about their room number and the floor on which it is located. Escort them to their room. Assist them in how to use the card to access elevator and their room’s door. While on the way, inform them about newly added services and how they can avail them. They should also be told about different areas, like restaurant or bar, of the hotel and how to access them.
Open the door for them, and ensure you are available at their service
Assist guests in using card key to open the room. Inform them about in-room services and fire exist point in case of any emergency. Plus, ensure them that they will be given privacy in the hotel. Tell them the procedure to reach you for any kind of requirements. Don’t forget to wish them a pleasant stay before closing the door gently.
Remember that not all guests need discounted services. Being courteous can leave a good impression of the hotel on them. In return, your hotel will receive good reviews from the host, and possibly a permanent guest.