Have you ever walked into a hotel, and felt like asking for your money back, before you even checked in? Sounds a bit dramatic right? 😀
Drama aside, whenever you travel, it is only logical to expect good value for your money, yes? 🙂
As a Travel Blogger, I’ve had the amazing privilege of sampling a number of hotels and similar establishments… I usually share my experiences here with the aim of encouraging us to try out those places, and to Travel Local. 🙂
But, what happens when the experience is a ‘little less than heavenly’? While I do my best to provide positive reviews, I think there’s still room for improvement by Kenyan Hoteliers…
Hence today, in the spirit of growth and improvement, I feel compelled to share these 4 Things I wish our Kenyan Hoteliers would pay close attention to…
P.S. I take ‘Kenyan Hoteliers’ here, in a broad sense, to mean service providers in the tourism industry who offer accommodation & all it encompasses…
1. Customer Confidence In Your Brand, is Key
What do you do when a client gives negative feedback? Granted, your clients will be unhappy about one thing or the other.
In some cases their reasons are completely justified… Plus, as any wise businessman knows, ‘The customer is always right!’ 😀
When a client has a bad experience at your hotel, don’t leave them to the wind. In this day of Social Media and Trip Advisor, you can’t possibly afford a ‘couple of bad reviews’…
Show your customers that you value their feedback by seriously looking into the complaints & make amends where possible.
You may want to go the extra mile by offering a return complimentary stay or meal, to ensure that they leave you with a good report. 🙂
I have seen instances, to my dismay, where hotel representatives engage in a negative exchange with clients, on online forums. Don’t fall into this trap!
Your future potential clients check online reviews daily, before making a decision on whether or not to visit your property.
Don’t waste a good mistake… Learn from it~ Robert Kiyosaki
I read a story, on one of my travel forums, about a lady who checked into one of Mombasa’s high-end hotels only to find bedbugs in her bed!
Oh the horror!
She immediately informed the staff. The Manager, very apologetic, upgraded her to a presidential suite. Furthermore, he made certain that she was present to witness the fumigation…
Because of that positive feedback experience, that hotel is now her top choice whenever she’s in Mombasa. Moreover, she’s more than happy to recommend it to others… 😀
Do not hire a man who does your work for money, but him who does it for love of it~ Henry David Thoreau
2. Old is not always Gold….
I feel like a villain for even saying this… but it is, unfortunately true.
The beauty of traveling in Kenya is that we have countless options: from newly-established hotels and resorts to some that’ve been there since kingdom come.
If you happen to run an age-old hotel, kudos to you! 🙂 That said, it is no excuse to let things go, or operating with the same resources that you did 30 years ago.
A few updates will go a long way! Invest in key renovations without losing the essence of your hotel, or its unique historical qualities…
Such things as bedding, towels, toilet seats, curtains, are some of the must-update components in a hotel. Strive to strike a balance between old and new… Your clients will thank you for it. 🙂
Let us preserve our dateless establishments with love and care. It’s a beautiful thing to visit an ancient place that is well-maintained and takes you back in time…. 🙂
3. Anticipate Your Clients’ Needs: A Little Creativity Goes a Long Way!
You don’t have the budget to do major upgrades to your hotel? No problem! What can you do to make your place worthy of return visits?
Recently, someone asked me: ‘What’s the one place you would return to, given the chance?’
Although I have been to some pretty remarkable places, the answer was super obvious to me: Temple Point Resort, in Watamu. 😀
Astonishingly, I went there on an unofficial visit with my family, yet every single aspect of our time there felt generic and true. Why? Because they anticipated our needs and went the extra mile…. 🙂
Put yourself in the clients’ shoes…. Do they have kids? How can you show them a great time?
They say that the way to a man’s heart is his stomach…Well I say that the way to any parents’ hearts is through their children. Think of putting up a children’s play area with a trained caretaker… Perhaps you can organize a swim instructor…or Zumba classes for kids?
Whatever you choose, if it positively impacts the kids and allows their folks to take a breather…then you can be certain of repeat customers, plus optimistic referrals. 🙂
Do you have a younger crowd? They’ll want a fun time… You could provide a Dj with good music, so they don’t feel inclined to venture out and spend their moneys elsewhere…
If yours is more of a retreat centre in a remote place, consider indoor board games & competitions or Yoga sessions….
Get creative about it! 😉
The things you are passionate about are not random, they are your calling ~ Fabienne Fredrickson
4. The Local Kenyan Market Is King!
Let’s be honest… The times when our Tourism Sector depended solely on Foreigners is long gone… we need to wake up and smell the coffee! 😀
Kenya’s tourism sector has suffered adversely over the past few years, seeing a drastic decline in foreign tourism… You need only to visit majority of our hotels to see the effects.
We, Kenyans, present the biggest and most available market for Kenyan Hoteliers and other tourism shareholders to tap into.
Unfortunately, Kenyans mainly fail to frequent our hotels because of the sub-standard treatment they’ve received over time, compared to our ‘white’ cohorts. It’s the ugly, painful, truth. 🙁
On the up side, this is slowly changing. 😀 I loved an encounter we recently had at Attibassi Restaurant in Two Rivers Mall, with my friends Christine and Jackie. 🙂
Our pleasant waiter told us about the decline in their patronage over the last few months, due to the political climate… However he was upbeat saying: ‘We are happy to have you here! Because Kenya ni Yetu, and we must support our own.’ Now that’s the spirit!! 😀
The grass is greener where you water it~ Neil Barringham
Thank you for reading my Scrapbook Journeys Fam! Can you relate to any of the above? Feel free to Comment down below, and add any more Tips/experiences of your own for our Kenyan Hoteliers.
P.S. Sharing is caring>> So share, share share so that this message can reach far and wide! 😀
<Sending You Love & Light. Stay Inspired Always.>