Tourism Talk – Let’s Talk Travel + Tourism
My name is Anoushka De Boucherville-Brandl, and I am the Second Vice President for BHA. If we were to rank the reasons we travel, I’d put “self-discovery” at the top of my list.
What’s on the modern traveler’s mind in 2020?
GREEN FOR GOOD
I like to define sustainability as ‘luxury.’ Luxury is not necessarily defined as a fancy hotel by Aman or Four seasons… Think about the fervor around single-use plastics. We can leverage sustainability to enhance the guest experience.
Tip! – Start an initiative such as planting trees and write a blog about it. This initiative shows that you are putting the effort to help combat deforestation and global warming; hence, you will attract more customers concerned about the state of the planet.
KEEP IT FIT
Hotel in Belize has the privilege to embrace the health obsession, offering healthy cuisine and access to fitness experiences beyond the gym.
Tip! – Through the traveler’s experience, you can highlight your hotel’s gastronomy and areas of relaxation. This can be easily achieved by highlighting the menu, the garden the ingredients come from, and the areas where travelers can enjoy a meditation or yoga session.
Anyone with a Millennial Mindset these days wants something local, something different, something unpredictable. The millennial mindset is looking for experiential travel and does not want to feel like a tourist. They want to travel to provide enrichment and personal enhancement.
It is essential to have a game plan in place to manage this segment. Whether it is your décor, your food, or your entertainment, keep it local. Do what it takes to attract locals to your hotel, and help your guests engage with local people authentically. Play on service and consistency. Leverage on your team and the feeling you give your guests when they stay with you.
Tip! – Capturing and sharing photos of your staff at moments that refer to the travelers’ experience, is a technique of great importance, as it brings them in contact with what they should expect to live at the hotel.
THE ART OF HOSPITALITY
We can analyze trends, and all signs point to the same premise…. disconnect to reconnect. As connected as we are in the social media age, we are entirely disconnected. Humans crave personal touch and attention, which revert to hospitality where guests are genuinely touched by humans who care and anticipate needs will create an unbreakable loyalty and move it beyond irrelevance. Yes, hospitality – the real kind, the Belizean kind, not the robotic kind. Incorporate all the technology you want; it is cool, it is fun, but it is completely replaceable and easily disrupted. The craving of a person to person interaction, the feeling of love, and for being cared for what people are programmed for and that will never go away.
Tip! – Use your social media platform to republish photos of travelers who have stayed in your hotel (always asking their permission and using a reference to their personal profile) to incorporate the human element in your photos in the most authentic way.