7 Underused Hotel Services and Amenities (and How to Find Hotels That Offer Them)
The modern traveler wants to get the most value for their dollar.
This means that hotels have to either keep their rates competitive or provide the types of amenities that justify a higher price tag.
For business travelers, those amenities can be the key to a comfortable and convenient trip. But they can sometimes be missed altogether.
So how can you be sure you’re making the most of your travel budget?
The key may very well be hiding in these underused services and amenities, which most guests forget to ask about.
Traveling is much more enjoyable when you have a way to get around the city you’re staying in. Hotels know this, which is why many of them offer their guests various transportation options.
These options usually vary depending on the location and type of lodging. Higher-end hotels in big cities often have the most variety.
Independent hotels, lesser-known locales, or bed and breakfast types are limited in the services they can offer. Even if hotel management wants to offer more, some options just aren’t available in a small town.
Still, you can expect to see an assortment of transportation options beyond the typical driver courtesy coach.
Depending on the needs of you and/or your team, check for hotels that offer:
- Hotel buses or vans
- Rideshare discounts for affiliated companies
- Bike and scooter rentals
- Limousine services for VIP guests
If your travelers need a way to get to their business meetings, on-site transportation amenities are essential. It also helps them feel independent and not “stuck” in their hotel.
For guests who do rent a car, ask about the car park and valet services. Many hotels, especially in major locations like New York City, charge extra for both of these (which can be a big unexpected hit to your travel budget).
2. Healthy Dining Fare (or In-Room Kitchens)
A lot of people are trying to eat healthier these days. But on the road, it’s often difficult to find enjoyable yet nutritious and affordable meals.
It’s even harder to find options when you’re on a restrictive diet, such as vegan or gluten-free.
If you’re a traveler on a healthy diet or a manager who wants to give your team plenty of options, you should consider this when booking hotels.
Eating Healthy on a Trip
Hotels that provide healthy meal alternatives are always a nice surprise. However, if you’re staying more than a night or two, the costs add up.
Wellness perks are becoming a major trend in the hotel industry. Guests will find a lot more amenities geared toward healthy living, like upgraded fitness centers.
Still, nutritious food isn’t always cheap.
But your team can save money by dining in.
Instead of spending half of their budget on meals, savvy travelers are seeking out lodging with in-room kitchens. They don’t have to leave the hotel to find food that suits their diet, it’s convenient, and it saves a lot of money on dining out or room service.
3. Next-Level Loyalty Programs
Some major chain hotels have loyalty programs to try to entice guests to come back for repeat business.
This “loyalty” still depends on the perks. If there isn’t anything special to convince the guest to come back to the hotel — and they can get a cheaper room down the street — they’ll go with the lower rate.
This “guest fact” has many lodging businesses stepping up their loyalty programs.
Common (and Not-So-Common) Loyalty Perks
Airlines offer frequent flyer miles, and hotels give guests frequent visitor accommodation perks. To make sure you take advantage of these benefits, read the fine print on the website or in the brochure that came with your membership.
You’ll see common perks of loyalty programs, like discounted rates, extra pillows, and upgraded Wi-Fi. But in an increasingly saturated hospitality industry, it’s the not-so-common features that set certain hotels apart.
Earning and Redeeming Points
Before you start working toward earning points for perks, check to see if the hotel has a specific credit card you can use. By signing up for the card, you may be eligible for a host of other benefits, like extra points, free rooms, and discounts on fuel.
Some hotels have loyalty points that can be redeemed at hotel gift shops and on-site dining venues.
Premium guests can relax and get pampered in the hotel’s lounge area or enjoy preferred seating in the on-site restaurant. If pampering is your goal, search out “spas” as a luxury hotel amenity. Then, see if the loyalty program for that company gives massage or other spa credits.
“Follow Us on Our Social Media”
When you become a member of a hotel’s loyalty program, go ahead and follow them on social media. They may offer complimentary upgrades if you say you saw an ad on their feed.
Don’t forget to check in with the hotel once every few months to see how their perks have changed. You’ll be amazed at the awards you can compile for staying loyal to a company.
4. Travel Services
For people who stay at hotels once in a while, it’s not a big deal to log into a fare-finder and book a room for their trip.
However, repeat travelers and businesses with a lot of traveling employees need better options.
If you’re not using one already, you’re missing out on the time and cost benefits that come with services like Hotel Engine.
Benefits of Lodging Performance Networks
Travel managers must ensure that their employees’ travel arrangements are aligned with the company travel policy. Every trip starts with a request for travel dates and ends when the expense report is finalized.
The job can involve hours spent calling hotels and trying to negotiate the best rates and integral amenities.
But the entire process is streamlined when you use a lodging performance network (LPN) like Hotel Engine.
Putting your employees’ hotel accommodations in expert hands nets your company benefits like:
- An all-in-one centralized booking process
- Incidental coverage programs that reduce employee issues at check-in
- Streamlined billing services (pay one monthly invoice instead of many).
- Specialized and saved search filters for employee preferences
- A storage and organization system for folios and statements
- Significant savings on travel budgets and planning time
Learn more about how Hotel Engine’s Lodging Performance Network can help you save time and money on travel management!
5. Delivery Services
You’ve spent all day at your meeting or at an on-site project. The last thing you want to do is to shop, but there’s nothing you feel like eating at the hotel.
What’s a tired worker to do?
If you’re staying at a hotel that offers delivery services (or partners with stores that do), all you have to do is place an order!
Hotels Partnering With Delivery Companies
Wyndham and DoorDash were some of the first widely known hotel discount partnerships. Guests at Wyndham get reduced rates and zero delivery fees if they order through the worldwide delivery company.
Now, partnerships with a variety of delivery companies are a regular perk of staying at certain hotels, including Hilton and other major names. However, if guests don’t ask, they don’t always know the amenity is available.
In a world that seems to be almost entirely digital, it’s not asking too much to expect technology to make your stay easier. To stay relevant in the industry, lodging businesses have to upgrade their tech levels regularly.
Technology can be the type of convenient amenity that encourages guests to come back in the future.
Contactless check-in is a must in today’s post-pandemic world. But other technological amenities make a big difference in guest services, too.
For instance, what kind of charging accessories are available if the guest forgets or loses theirs?
Is there complimentary Wi-Fi for everyone, or only for elite members?
Is there a business center with computers available to access the internet or print documents?
Personalized service comes from the hotel platforms, too. The right program can record individual guest’s preferences, such as whether they’re an Apple/Mac or Android user. Guests can request upgrades to faster Wi- Fi, laptop rentals, and other tech needs.
7. Multiple-Room Suites
Are you a light sleeper or someone who prefers privacy? Will you be in your hotel long enough to benefit from a separate kitchen and/or living area?
If so, check into lodging businesses that offer suites. These enhanced accommodations are usually only a few dollars more. If there’s an extra guest room and the travelers don’t mind, travel managers could save money by booking two people in one suite.
Why Opt for a Suite?
Travelers that are staying for longer periods will appreciate the extra space to make their rooms feel homier. Suites usually include a living area with a TV and a video console. Hotel guests may be able to upgrade to more TV channels or streaming services, available for free in some five-star lodgings.
Business travelers who stay in suites have more workspace. The kitchen and living room tables double as laptop areas.
A hotel room with kitchen features, like a fridge, is great. But a suite brings the comforts of home on the road with you. Everything you need to cook your meals and save money is on hand, from the stove and coffeemaker to the utensils, cookware, and dishes.
From the privacy to the convenience, a hotel suite is worth the extra cost. Before you book, ask if the hotel facilities include suites. If you already booked, when you check in, ask guest services if you can bump up your stay to a suite.
Whether you’re booking on behalf of an employee or you’re traveling yourself, comfort is important and makes for a more productive trip.
With these lesser-known amenities and services, you and your team will be able to make the most of your time in any lodging!
Book through Hotel Engine and save up to 60% on business lodging for your next adventure!
Audrey Fairbrother is the Content and SEO Manager at Hotel Engine. She spends her days writing about all things business travel, researching topics that are important to Hotel Engine’s audience and cultivating the company’s brand voice. When she’s not working, Audrey enjoys spending time with her family, and hiking in the nearby Rockies with her dog, Albie.