Author: Yulia Zakharchenko

The hotel business has become one of those areas in which we had to work on innovations over the past year. The quarantine has made its own adjustments and it has become almost impossible to continue working as we used to.

Entrepreneurs tried to bring their activities to a new level by introducing quite interesting solutions. And if you will not surprise anyone with mandatory masks or antiseptics, then the "hotel in your phone" can impress.

Since the tourism sector suffered the most during the pandemic, it was not easy for the owners of hotel premises. Statistics show that 93% of hotels have significantly reduced their revenue. Although the category and reputation played a role, it is difficult to say who survived the crisis better.

It was difficult for new hotels, because they still do not have a stable position on the market. But the "veterans" of the industry also should not relax, because even regular guests did not come because of restrictions. The STR (Smith Travel Research) data show an unfavorable situation: even in those hotels that were working, the occupancy rate did not exceed 10%.

However, nothing lasts forever, people begin to go to their favorite cities again and stay with their favorites. Following the new rules, tourists traveled and got used to the new reality. For example, the Carpathians and Odessa have consistently remained popular destinations in Ukraine. Accordingly, in these locations, entrepreneurs should have become more active so that the work was effective.

Safety glass at the reception desk, breakfast delivery to the room instead of buffets, price reduction-all these have become the main methods of conducting business. And in order to achieve a higher level of security, they tried to transfer the work to the online mode as much as possible.

We found out from the founder of Ribas Hotels Group which of the trends really work in the hotel business and what to expect in the future. The choice of the commentator is not accidental, since Ribas is a trendsetter of the HoReCa industry, which combines an investment company with development and franchising, and also increased the number of objects under its management to 25 in 2021 (more than 1,000 rooms in eight locations in Ukraine), 20 of which are resort ones.

Employees of Ribas hotels communicate with guests during their stay and check-out only via Telegram and WhatsApp, face – to-face communication is limited.

In addition to messengers, a chatbot in Telegram was created in Ribas network to conduct workflows, and they were also the first in Ukraine to use a barcode from the Dia application when registering. This method of registration allows you to avoid communication directly at the reception desk and once again not to look for a passport in a suitcase.

Thanks to these innovations, the Ukrainian hotel business is actively developing even during the coronavirus pandemic. For example, in December 2020, the Ribas Karpaty hotel complex was opened in Bukovel, and two hotels outside Ukraine are at the final stage: Bautzen in the city of Jelenia Gura (Poland) and in the city of Bar (Montenegro).

The trends of an increased level of concern for the safety of guests in hotels have now become decisive in the conduct of business processes. In the era of the spread of the coronavirus, online communication is the most correct solution for observing quarantine measures and at the same time maintaining a habitual lifestyle.

Although the tourism industry will not fully recover soon, it is worth contributing to this from two sides. While entrepreneurs are actively implementing innovative solutions and trying to attract guests, tourists can support their favorite hotels or discover new ones. Cooperation between business and society has been and is the best vaccine against any infectious diseases and risks.

The article is published on the website FACTI. ICTV.