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Cloud Technology, Instant Payments Accelerate Hospitality Brands’ Digital Transformation

hotel

From online booking platforms and mobile check-in services to AI-powered chatbots and virtual concierge services, technology is not only changing the way hotels operate, but redefining the guest journey, making it more seamless, convenient and personalized.

One player in this digital transformation agenda is Mews, a cloud-based property management system (PMS) serving over 5,000 hospitality brands around the world. The company offers a comprehensive suite of tools and solutions, from booking engines and invoicing support to customizable dashboards, all designed to enhance operations and guest experiences.

Reflecting strong investor interest and confidence in the sector’s potential, the Amsterdam-based Software-as-a-solution (Saas) firm recently secured $110 million in funding, valuing the company at over $1 billion.

According to CEO Matt Welle, “Mews is in a unique position to truly transform the industry,” and “as more hoteliers embrace modern technology, we have a huge opportunity to help them streamline their operations, build more profitable businesses and deliver personalized guest experiences.”

Mews is not alone in trying to drive innovation in the hospitality sector. Across the pond in the United States, several firms are also making waves with similar technologies and services. 

In May, PYMNTS reported that Elavon was powering the payments behind a voice-activated system for the hospitality industry. This followed the inking of an exclusive deal with Amazon-approved partner The Digital Line (TDL) to become the sole payments provider worldwide for Audico, a platform utilizing Amazon Alexa to offer voice-enabled services. 

Commenting on the deal, Elavon Merchant Services President in Europe Hemlata Narasimhan said: “Virtual assistant technology is the future of hospitality,” adding that it all boils down to “improving the customer experience, and a large part of this is seamless payments.”

In August, international travel technology firm OYO also teamed up with Stripe to enable its hotels to receive instant payouts, enhancing hotels’ financial liquidity by granting managers immediate access to their funds after a transaction is completed successfully.

Hotel Tipping Gets Instant Update

The rise of hospitality-focused tech-driven platforms coincides with hotels’ adoption of instant payments to optimize cash flow and streamline tipping processes, as detailed in ‘Tap and Tip: Travel and Hospitality Embrace Digital and Instant Payments,’ a PYMNTS Intelligence and Ingo Payments collaboration. 

According to the study’s findings, digitizing legacy payment systems with faster and instant payment solutions enables hoteliers to better cater to the demands of customers, the majority of whom prefer mobile solutions to check in, pay and order food at hotels.

Furthermore, the integration of instant payment technologies can streamline the entire guest experience for hotel establishments, while also facilitating quicker access to cash flow insights for managers after a successful transaction.

Gratuity payments are another area where digitalization may pay off big time. This emerging trend gives hotel visitors a safe, quick and easy way to express their gratitude to worthy employees when they don’t have cash on hand. 

For hospitality workers who have immediate access to gratuities, the probability of them showing greater loyalty and job satisfaction is high, which is especially beneficial for businesses in a competitive industry where retaining staff is a challenge.

As Matt Tuchband, co-founder at TipQwik, noted in the report, “The ability to tip with a smartphone throughout a property is important for two reasons. [First, it can reduce] turnover through retention [of] staff who normally do not get tips included on a bill, such as housekeeping, porters, etc. [Second,] it provides a simple option for guests to show their appreciation at any time without fumbling for cash.”