As people return to everyday life, and even once COVID-19 is behind us, the hotel industry may not return to business as usual in terms of hygiene, cleanliness and distancing. Hotel owners and operators will likely need to adapt to a new reality where a much larger percentage of guests are very conscious of the cleanliness of the property.
Hotel operators can look to various sources for hygiene and cleaning tips. For example, the World Health Organization (WHO) issued guidance on the “Operational considerations for COVID-19 management in the accommodation sector.”
Hotel owners and operators will need to adhere to higher levels of cleanliness, and publicly promote those efforts, to continue to attract guests in this new climate. Below are some suggestions that hotels may consider putting into place to convince guests that the establishment is “clean and safe.”
Appoint a Cleanliness Manager
The cleanliness manager will be responsible for developing a cleanliness plan, implementing the plan, updating the plan, training employees and ensuring that guests’ hygiene-related questions are immediately answerable. This individual will also ensure that your establishment remains in compliance with any new Government regulation, and is the point of contact for any health inspections.
Develop a Cleanliness Plan That is Available to Guests
The cleanliness manager is ultimately responsible for developing, implementing and updating a cleanliness plan. This is the blueprint for the elevated efforts being made to convince guests that a hotel is safe and clean. This plan should address all steps being taken to sanitise the hotel to minimise the chances of an outbreak in the property.
The plan should be updated regularly based on changing Government regulation, information or events in and around the hotel, and other relevant circumstances. Ensure that this plan is available to all prospective guests to provide a sense of security so that they can feel comfortable in their choice to stay at your hotel.
When people begin to travel again, hygiene may become one of the biggest factors in hotel selection, and making this information public and readily available could distinguish your hotel from many others.
Increase Frequency of Disinfection and Cleaning
Increase the frequency of cleaning and disinfection throughout your hotel, but especially in high-traffic areas such as the lobby, front desk and stairs.
Implement Safe Distancing
Once COVID-19 has passed, guests may still feel the need to distance from others for some time. Consider using signage or other methods to encourage distancing in public places such as the front desk, lobby, lounges and bars.