Hotel guest spending can increase 24% in Ramadan - study

New analysis into spending patterns reveal that hotels can boost in-house guest spending by 24 per cent during a summer Ramadan by personalising communications to individual guests.

A study by SweetBeam, a hotel revenue expert, reveals that guest spending across Dubai's luxury hotels drops by an average of 15 per cent when Ramadan falls within the summer months. When paired with the dip in occupancy typical of the period, total revenue from overnight guests can decline by as much as 35 per cent.

This trend is prevalent across all guest demographics, with the spending of families dropping the most at almost 40 per cent. Nearly all in-hotel services are impacted by the decline, including spas where spending drops by almost a fifth (19 per cent). Room service remains the most stable, falling by only 5 per cent.

The sole exception to the downward trend is in transportation services, where spending actually rises by 10 per cent, suggesting that guests are leaving their hotels in search of activities.

The survey covered 45,000 room nights in a representative set of five-star hotels in Dubai. It included in-house guest spending on hotel facilities such as food and beverages, spa and other activities.

SweetBeam claims that by targeting guests with individually relevant information through personalized in-room digital advertising, hoteliers can reverse the revenue decline typical of this season and actually increase in-house guest spending.

''With much of the city closed in the day or inaccessible because of the summer heat, hotels have an important opportunity to capitalize on a captive audience and boost spending,'' said Troy Simoni, CEO of SweetBeam. ''However, during Ramadan it is essential that marketing is highly personalized and culturally appropriate to each individual guest.

''To avoid drops in revenue during a summer Ramadan, hoteliers need to use guest intelligence to personalize experiences so each guest is aware of the services and offerings that are relevant to them. For example, many fasting parents will be keen to know about kids clubs to entertain young children in the afternoon, while international guests need to know which restaurants are open during the day.''

SweetBeam says hotels can use check-in information to target guests with culturally sensitive guidance on hotel offerings.

Communicating with guests in their own language, ensuring that key demographics such as families are aware of relevant offerings, making sure that changes in hotel offerings are prominently displayed and boosting marketing around spa facilities also help in making hotels more attractive during the season.

Furthermore, educating guests on Ramadan traditions will encourage them to sample Ramadan offerings.

Source: Property Weekly


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