Tag: Mobile Check-Ins

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Starwood To Launch Next Phase of Keyless Entry on Wednesday at W, Aloft, and Element Hotels

November 3, 2014 at 1:05 PM | by | ()

UPDATE: Hilton Hotels also announced a "mobile room key deployment" today for four of its brands – Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts and Canopy by Hilton. HHonors members can open their hotel room doors via smartphones starting in spring 2015.

Earlier this year, Starwood Hotels began testing keyless mobile check-in at Aloft Hotels for members of its Starwood Preferred Guest program.

Back then, you had to be an SPG member (duh) and an Aloft reservation, but also, you had to apply to be a tester of the keyless entry. Now, starting on Wednesday, November 5, all you'll need is the SPG app on your smartphone and a reservation at one of the participating W, Element or Aloft Hotels, made directly through Starwood.

Here's how it works (you can watch the video above or read the step-by-step instructions below):

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Hilton to Let HHonors Guests Select Specific Rooms Through New Check-In App

July 28, 2014 at 2:10 PM | by | ()

Here's just another reason why it pays to become a member of a hotel's loyalty program--access to cool technology that will make checking in a smooth transition after a long day of travel. Or so we hope.

Hilton Hotels has announced a new update to its HHonors app that will allow guess to select their own rooms, right down to the floor and room number. By the end of the year, this app function, along with digital check-in, will be in place at all 4,000 Hilton Hotels worldwide. Here's how it works:

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Renaissance Hotels to Launch Mobile Check-In Worldwide Next Month

June 26, 2014 at 1:09 PM | by | ()

Check-in at the Renaissance Santiago

Move over HotelTonight. Renaissance Hotels are about to make it much, much, much easier to check into your hotel room.

Starting July 22, the lifestyle brand from Marriott International, will offer the Marriott Mobile Check-In service at all their Renaissance hotels worldwide. Toni Stoeckl, VP and Global Brand Manager for Renaissance Hotels, announced the news during a media event at the Renaissance Santiago for the brand's Global Day of Discovery.

If you're not familiar with Marriott Mobile Check-In, it works like this:

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HotelTonight Wants to Check You Into Your Hotel and Open The Room Door

June 26, 2014 at 9:13 AM | by | ()

HotelTonight, the mobile booking app last-minute travelers can't live without, announced some major news yesterday at Google's I/O conference. Like, major.

HotelTonight will soon let you check-in to your room from within the HotelTonight app as well as open your room door. Wow. Earlier this year, when we mentioned bonus points for hotels who adopted keyless entries, we had no idea it would come from a booking app like HotelTonight.

The two new features are simply called, "Express Check-In" and "Keyless Entry." They were demonstrated yesterday at the conference on an Android phone but the Express Check-In is being piloted on the iPhone app while Keyless Entry is working off Android.

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Wave Goodbye to the Room Key and Wave Your Smartphone Instead at Aloft Hotels

January 28, 2014 at 12:49 PM | by | ()

In case you've already forgotten, our #6 resolution for hotels to adopt was more mobile check-ins with "bonus points if they offer keyless entry too." Well, it looks like Starwood Hotels will be getting an envelope of bonus points from us.

The hotel brand announced yesterday that members of its Starwood Preferred Guest program will be able to test a Keyless Mobile Check-In via the SPG smartphone app. Take a look at how it will work:

It's not that much different from the Smart Check-In that Starwood first started doing with its Aloft brand, except the app replaces the special SPG member keycard.

Starwood will be testing this new keyless technology at Aloft hotels in early 2014 with plans to roll it out in Aloft and W Hotels after that. You can apply to be a tester here but you have to be an SPG member first.

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2013 Must-Have Hotel Amenity: Mobile Check-Ins

December 30, 2013 at 11:07 AM | by | ()

It's that time of year again: the 2013 HotelChatter Awards! Today and tomorrow, we'll be showcasing the best (and worst) of hotels over the past year. But we couldn't do it without you! Let us know your thoughts in the comments below, or shoot us an email. And the Award goes to...

For the first time ever in the history of HotelChatter Awards, the Must-Have Amenity of the Year is something that's found outside of the guest rooms. We're talking about mobile check-ins. (Way back when, we used to call this Smartphone Check-Ins.)

Marriott Hotels really led the way in 2013 with mobile check-ins with their program of the same name for for Marriott Rewards members. They began testing it earlier in the year at 30 properties, then expanded it over the summer to 325 Mariott-branded properties in the U.S. and then just a few weeks ago, they announced it was going worldwide. Here's how it works:

1. Join Marriott Rewards
2. Check-in to your hotel at 4pm the day before your arrival, then the app will send you an automatic notification when the room is ready.
3. Arrive at the hotel and bypass the front desk by hitting up the "expedited mobile check-in desk" to pick up your room key.
4. Head up to your room and immediately start doing these things.

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Marriott's Mobile Check-In Has Gone Worldwide

December 6, 2013 at 11:18 AM | by | ()

If you scored a Black Friday or Cyber Monday deal recently at a Marriott Hotel, another kind of "deal" awaits you--Marriott's mobile check-in .

Over the summer we told you about this high-tech service and how it works (through the Marriott Mobile App) but back then, only about 30 properties were using it. By the end of the summer, about 325 hotels in the U.S and Canada were using it. Now, it's gone worldwide from the U.K. to Mexico, the UAE and India.

But Marriott isn't stopping there. By 2014, all 500 hotels should have the mobile check-in function.

So in case you've got a Marriott hotel stay coming up soon, this is how it works:

1. Join Marriott Rewards
2. Check-in to your hotel at 4pm the day before your arrival, then the app will send you an automatic notification when the room is ready.
3. Arrive at the hotel and bypass the front desk by hitting up the "expedited mobile check-in desk" to pick up your room key.
4. Head up to your room and immediately start doing these things.

Have you tried Marriott's Mobile Check-in App yet? Tell us what you think in comments below!

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Marriott Mobile Check-In to Expand to All Properties By Summer's End

July 16, 2013 at 9:17 AM | by | ()

Marriott currently offers mobile check-in at approximately 30 of its properties, but it was announced recently that the service wlll expand to all of its 325 Marriott-brand hotels by the end of the summer. Nice!

Marriott Rewards members will be able to "check-in" at 4 p.m on the day before their arrival, and they will automatically receive a notification when their room is ready the next day. Guests can also store their credit card information online so they can bypass the counter and grab their key card at the "expedited mobile check-in desk," which we're assuming will either be an automated, self-service type check-in counter -- a concept we discussed a few months ago to mixed feedback -- or a side desk in the front lobby only for those using mobile check-in.

The best thing we see coming from this is that we can drop our bags and head out and not have to guesstimate when to return to the hotel, especially when arriving well before the scheduled check-in time and getting the infamous "it will be ready around three or four" spiel. We don't like being in limbo while on the road, and this definitely keeps us in the loop and allows more control over our day. In that regard, it's great to hear it will soon be available at all properties.

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Aloft's Smart Check-In Program Is Gaining Serious Momentum. Here's How It Works:

June 6, 2013 at 9:00 AM | by | ()

The back of a sample Aloft Smart Check-In keycard

It turns out that the number of people who check-out of hotels the old-fashioned way is shrinking at an alarming rate. But what about checking in? Are people in such a hurry these days that they can't bear the thought of waiting in line to get their keycard and be told which room is theirs?

In a word, yes. Judging from the popularity of Aloft's smart check-in program, people seriously value convenience over a face-to-face welcome. And the numbers speak for themselves: last month, the program reached 10,000 users, even though only a limited number of Aloft hotels are equipped to use it.

This year, Smart Check-In is set to expand to even more properties all over the world. In case you're considering signing up, here are some fast facts on how the whole thing works.

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IHG's New Smartphone Check-In Eliminates the Need for a Keycard

May 24, 2010 at 3:17 PM | by | ()

Way back in 2006, before the advent of the iPhone, the Droid and whatever the latest model of the Blackberry is, Marriott Hotels announced they would be testing a smartphone check-in in which guests could not-so-simply check into a Marriott hotel provided they had the right type of smartphone and had already downloaded the Marriott hotel's software.

Well, in the year 2010, Intercontinental Hotel Group is now testing a smartphone check-in that will allow you to actually open your hotel room, thus eliminating the need for a keycard completely.

According to USA Today, IHG will test the high-tech check-in next month at two Holiday Inns--one in Chicago and one in Houston. You will still have to download the technology's software from Open Ways and will also have to register to be one of the testers. But once you have that down, the next time you check into your hotel simply hold your smartphone up to a sensor on the door and voila! You're in the room.

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Will You Someday Use Your Cellphone to Open Your Hotel Room Door?

February 5, 2008 at 10:17 AM | by | ()

USA Today has a half-hearted report on the emerging room key technologies in hotels these days. We say half-hearted because there's no technology mentioned that gets us really excited about staying in a hotel room in the future.

For instance, the Plaza Hotel when it finally opens whenever that may be will use radio-frequency key-cards that can unlock your room door when swiped past the lock at close range. That's kinda cool. It can save us the frustration of trying to swipe a keycard thats been demagnetized against our knowledge.

There's also talk of creating a papercard which would look and work exactly like the plastic keycard, except it's more environmentally-friendly. This sounds nice until the paper gets squashed in our purse.

Lastly, Accor Hotels is testing out a new lock that opens when guests' cellphones or PDAs are flashed in front of the door. Now, this is some great hotel technology. We imagine your cellphone is programmed at the front desk to open your room and your room only. Wouldn't want people breaking into rooms just by flashing their BlackBerrys around.

Sadly, they say it will be years before this type of lock becomes common in hotel rooms.

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Marriott Testing Smartphone Check-In

August 15, 2006 at 2:20 PM | by | ()

On the heels of their controversial smoking ban, Marriott Hotels continue to forge ahead in the tech world.

The hotel chain already allows you to check-in for your flight from kiosks in their lobby and now they have announced that testing has begun on wireless check-in with Microsoft's Windows Mobile®-powered devices at the Redmond Marriott Town Center in Washington.

In a collaborative effort with Intel Solution Services and Microsoft Marriott is working toward implementing a mobile wireless check-in process that is convenient and easy for guests to use. During testing, guests with Microsoft Windows Mobile-powered Smartphones-running the PocketPC Platform-can simply download and install Marriott's seamless mobility software from Arrive.Marriott.com. Using the Internet, they can then connect securely to the Redmond Marriott Town Center hotel's property management system and check in to their room while in transit to the hotel.

So essentially, if you have the right type of smartphone and download the Marriott hotel's software, you can check-in from your phone. You will also be able to change room types, reconfirm room rates and pick up a key from the automated key dispenser which will be made available in the lobby.

But don't get too excited yet. Marriott still has to finish testing this plan out, which may take to the end of the year, and then they will revisit a timeframe for rolling out this service.

So gadget freaks, what do you prefer--a hotel that lets you smoke or one that lets you check-in from your smartphone?

Related Stories:
· Marriott's Smoking Ban coverage [HotelChatter]
· Marriott Gets Airline Check-In Stations [HotelChatter]