What to Include in Pre-Arrival Communications to Guests

What should you include in your hotel’s pre-arrival communications to guests? At a minimum, you need to confirm your guests’ reservations and give them a friendly reminder of any policies or anything else that may impact their stay. But these details are just that: the minimum. Pre-arrival communications give you an opportunity to enhance your guests’ stays before they leave home, let alone before they walk through your lobby doors.

With the right strategy for your pre-arrival communications, you can delight guests and potentially increase revenue at the same time. So, what should you include in these emails and/or texts to do more for your guests and your cash flow? Start with these four tips:

  1. Recommend and up-sell boutique services
  2. Send a customized pre-stay survey
  3. Offer mobile check-in
  4. Recommend local tours and activities
  1. Recommend and up-sell boutique services 

What can you do to enhance your guests’ stay – and get them excited to stay with you – before they even arrive? Let them know what they’re missing! In your pre-arrival email, be sure that guests are aware of all of the options and services that you offer to make their stay even better. Do you offer advance dining reservations, spa treatments, and/or discounted room upgrades? Be strategic with your offerings as you recommend upgrades and additional services. If you do this right, you can highlight the details that set your hotel apart – and you can potentially increase hotel revenue at the same time. 

As you determine which services and add-ons you want to highlight, be sure to focus on the ones that will truly add value to your guests’ stay. If you do it right, these offers feel less like you’re trying to sell them more stuff and more like an exciting way to upgrade their vacation or business trip.

  1. Send a customized pre-stay survey to guests 

First, start by personalizing your guests’ experience. After a guest books a stay with your hotel, send a quick survey about their goals for their stay and some need-to-know info about your hotel. You could ask something like,

What are you most excited about for your stay?

  1. A quiet night’s sleep in a luxurious room
  2. Local attractions
  3. A family resort experience 

Their answers could then trigger a second email that best fits their answers – and highlights the features of your hotel and/or surrounding area that they’ll be most interested in learning more about.

In this initial survey email, you can also include links to relevant info that will help deliver a more delightful experience for your guests. For example, if your hotel has a mobile app, you’ll want to include a prompt to download it with some details about why they should download the app to enhance their experience. These details might be things like digital key delivery, easily texting concierge services, and/or any other any other features that help them get the most out of their stay.

  1. Offer mobile check-in

An effective pre-arrival communication strategy will have your guests breezing into your hotel, expecting a seamless experience throughout their stay. So why not make it one step easier with mobile check-in? By letting guests check in on their mobile devices, and sending their Digital Key directly to their phones, you give guests a truly contactless, next-level experience. Before they even walk through your lobby doors, they’ll have everything they need to get settled into their room and start their stay.  

Using mobile technology like Digital Key lets you help guests streamline the check-in process or avoid the front desk altogether. By implementing digital key technology, you confirm for your guests that your hotel lives up to its image as a leader in hospitality.

  1. Recommend local tours and activities during guests’ stay

    Help guests plan a stay that they’ll never forget with recommendations for local attractions and activities. If you combine this with your pre-visit survey, you can personalize your recommendations to fit your guests’ goals for their stay. For example, if a guest’s survey answers indicate that they’re staying with you on a family vacation, you could send a list of family-friendly activities in the area. If their answers are more in line with a business trip, you could recommend the best dining options nearby.

Enjoy the benefits of strategic pre-arrival communications

Whatever else you do, you should always ensure that your pre-arrival communications (and all communications) are aligned with your brand and the experience your guests can expect from your hotel. If your guests expect a luxurious stay with streamlined check-in and check-out experiences, you’ll want to not only offer contactless mobile check-in and other features – you’ll want your guests to know about those services ahead of time.

When your guests arrive, the only surprise they should have is how stunningly gorgeous your rooms are. They shouldn’t be wondering about how to access the pool or when breakfast service starts. Include these details in your pre-arrival communications and you’ll be on your way to a more streamlined, seamless guest experience.

Want to learn more about what Digital Keys can do for your hotel? OpenKey is the leading provider of digital key services. Schedule a demo today to see how you can do more for your guests and your staff with Digital Keys.