HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Relay Robotics to Showcase Newest Service Robot at World’s Largest Hospitality Tech Conference, HITEC Orlando

Relay Robotics, Inc | June 30, 2022

Relay Robotics to Showcase
Relay Robotics, Inc., a leading supplier of service robots to the hospitality, healthcare, and real estate industries, is exhibiting its Relay+ Service Robot, the hospitality industry’s most advanced delivery robot, at the 2022 Hospitality Industry Technology Exposition and Conference (HITEC), June 27-30, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Booth #2629. HITEC is the world’s largest and most comprehensive event serving the technology sector of the hospitality industry.Relay Service Robots have become the go-to solution for the ongoing labor shortage in the hotel industry, performing room service delivery tasks in a timely and highly cost-efficient manner.

“In the face of continued labor shortages, service robots have become a mainstream solution for supplementing staff at hotels, Our robots make deliveries in under 10 minutes, operate for as little as $4.00 per hour, and are tireless team members, working 24/7/365.”

-Michael O’Donnell, Chief Executive Officer, Relay Robotics.

O’Donnell says HITEC attendees will be able to meet their Relay+ Service Robot face-to-face and learn how it safely operates in crowds and performs contact-free deliveries. Our robots are being widely used by hoteliers to supplement their teams, increase revenues, and delight guests with excellent service,” tells O’Donnell. “Hotels also see a social media explosion around their robot and increased RevPAR from higher occupancy and repeat stays from guests who want to stay at the ‘robot hotel.

Relay Service Robots are deployed at all the major hotels in the United States, including leading brands Marriott, Hilton, Wyndham, IHG, Hyatt, Mandarin Oriental, DREAM, and Radisson. Relay’s Rapid-InstallSM trains and activates a robot within hours of arrival at a location. Customers can name their robot and create a customized “wrap” to give it a unique character and harmonize it with their brand.

About Relay Robotics
Relay Robotics is a leading supplier of simple, sophisticated, autonomous service robots that work with humans safely, securely, reliably, and contact-free. Relay Robotics and its affiliates have been technology leaders in robotics since 2013 and hold 10 U.S. patents. Relay’s robots supplement staff across hospitality, healthcare, and commercial real estate settings. They have completed more than 1,000,000 deliveries worldwide.

Spotlight

For an entire year beginning in February 2010, travel bloggers Kyle and Briana of RollGlobal.org travelled to 19 countries in Asia, Africa and Europe, tracking their daily expenses to prove that it is not only possible to quit your day job and travel the world, but it can be affordable, too.


Other News
INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

ALLIANZ PARTNERS SWEEPS BOTH TRAVEL INSURANCE CATEGORIES AT THE TRAVELAGE WEST "WAVE" AWARDS

Allianz Partners | June 17, 2022

Travel insurance and assistance company Allianz Partners took home wins in both travel insurance categories at the 2022 TravelAge West WAVE (Western Advisors' Votes of Excellence) Awards, including Travel Insurance Company Providing the Best Travel Advisor Support and Travel Insurance Company Providing the Highest Client Satisfaction. This is the sixth consecutive year that Allianz Partners has been named a top travel insurance provider in the prestigious WAVE Awards. Now in its 17th year, the goal of TravelAge West's WAVE Awards is to give travel advisors in the West the opportunity to recognize the outstanding qualities and services of their travel-supplier partners. The Editor's Picks were chosen by Publisher/Editor-in-Chief Ken Shapiro and the entire editorial team of TravelAge West. Review methods included product analysis, on-site visits and a survey of a select group of travel advisors and industry experts. "As the travel industry starts to regain its footing, we want to help our readers celebrate the companies that have continued to serve travel advisors and their clients throughout the darkest days of the pandemic, The WAVE Awards are a pillar of the travel industry in the West, and we know many in the industry look forward to them each year, so we are very happy that we can once again bring this program to our partners." -Publisher/Editor-in-Chief Ken Shapiro During a black-tie dinner at The Ritz-Carlton, Marina Del Rey on June 9, Editor's Pick recipients were honored for their achievements and TravelAge West will feature a special WAVE Awards section in the July 11 issue, highlighting award winners. "We are elated to continue our winning streak at the TravelAge West WAVE Awards and are incredibly thankful to everyone who helped us achieve this milestone," said Richard Aquino, Vice President, Head of Sales at Allianz Partners USA. "It means the world to us to once again be recognized in both client satisfaction and travel advisor support, and it's a true testament to how deeply our team cares about our customers evolving needs." For a full list of this year's WAVE Award recipients, visit: https://www.travelagewest.com/Wave/Winners About TravelAge West TravelAge West is the leading trade media outlet for travel advisors and the travel industry in the 15 Western U.S. states. Serving more than 21,000 readers for 53 years, the brand is a main source of news and product information for the region's agents and travel executives. TravelAgeWest.com is a two-time winner of a Gold Award from the North American Travel Journalists Association for Best Travel Journalism Website. TravelAge West is a part of Northstar Travel Group LLC, a worldwide provider of information, news and data for the travel and hospitality industry. Northstar Travel Group is based in Secaucus, N.J. About Allianz Partners In the United States, Allianz Partners USA (AGA Service Company) offers Allianz Travel-branded travel protection plans and serves millions of customers each year. In addition to travel protection, the company offers event ticket protection, registration protection for endurance events and unique travel assistance services such as international medical assistance and concierge services. AGA Service Company is doing business as Allianz Global Assistance Insurance Agency in California (License # 0B01400) and Massachusetts. Allianz Partners USA is part of the Allianz Partners group. Allianz Partners is a world leader in B2B2C insurance and assistance, offering global solutions that span international health and life, travel insurance, mobility and assistance. Customer driven, our innovative experts are redefining insurance services by delivering future-ready, high-tech, high-touch products and solutions that go beyond traditional insurance. Present in over 75 countries, our 19,400 employees speak 70 languages, handle over 58 million cases each year, and are motivated to go the extra mile to offer peace of mind to our customers around the world.

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INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

Travelers Want High-Tech, Low-Touch Hotel Stays Shows New Oracle Survey

Oracle | June 02, 2022

A new study by Oracle Hospitality and Skift shows that 95% of people plan to travel in the next six months – with 29% taking an epic 'revenge travel' trip – however, many want to eliminate the 'touch' from the high touch industry they once knew. Nearly three-quarters (73%) of travelers want to use their mobile device to manage their hotel experience, including checking in and out, paying, ordering food, and more. This is good news for hoteliers looking to tech to manage through the staffing shortage without hurting guest engagement and service. Over the next few years, travelers are also looking to personalize their journey even more by picking their exact room and floor and paying for only the amenities they want – and even wanting to pre-screen properties in the metaverse (68%). Moreover, 74% are interested in hotels using AI to better tailor services and offers, such as room pricing or food suggestions and discounts. Nearly 40% of hotel executives see this 'unbundled' model as the future of hotel revenue management. "The pandemic has established technology's role in the guest and associate journey, and the industry is never going back, Whether a hotel organization has two properties or 2,000, guests are looking for the highly digital, self-service experience they have come to expect in other parts of their lives, from banking to ordering food. For hoteliers to meet these demands, especially with constrained property staffing, they need systems that will enable them to quickly adapt, 'plug in' new services, and better and more efficiently serve a diverse group of travelers." -Alex Alt, senior vice president and general manager, Oracle Hospitality. The "Hospitality in 2025: Automated, Intelligent… and More Personal" study surveyed 5,266 consumers and 633 hotel executives across the world in the spring of 2022 to better understand how guest expectations have changed and how hotels are adapting. Consumers and executives were surveyed in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Australia, Japan, Singapore, Brazil, and Mexico. Check-out the report at: https://bit.ly/3MPgGXa. Travelers want people to 'get away' while on their getaway Two years of restrictions created a pent-up desire to travel, with 29% of people planning a larger, pricier "revenge travel" trip. But the pandemic has also left jetsetters feeling antisocial with many desiring contactless and self-service technology: 92% of travelers don't miss being around other people while staying on a hotel property. 73% agree that they're more likely to stay at a hotel that offers self-service technology to minimize contact with the staff and other guests. 38% want a fully self-service model, with staff only available upon request. 39% want to order room service from their phone or a chatbot. 49% are also looking for contactless payments (only 5% want to pay in crypto). Staff remains slim, tech is helping The labor shortage remains a top issue in the hotel industry, but hoteliers are working hard to onboard new tech to ease the strain on guests and staff: 65% of hoteliers said incorporating new technologies for staff best describes their strategy to weather labor shortages and attract new talent. 96% are investing in contactless technology, with 62% noting "a fully contactless experience" is likely to be the most widely adopted tech in the industry in the next three years. 54% added that their highest priority is to adopt tech that improves or eliminates the need for the front desk experience between now and 2025. Travelers are mixed on how patient they are willing to be in this transition: 39% said they want a fully contactless experience for all basic hotel transactions (check-in/out, food & beverage, room keys, etc.). 34% said a staff shortage, and resulting slow service, would be their #1 deterrent to rebooking a hotel. However, just 23% noted that a lack of daily room cleaning is an issue, showing consumers have accepted (and 17% welcomed!) that this pre-pandemic mainstay is never coming back. People looking for the comfort of home, even when away from home Whether ordering room service or signing onto Netflix, travelers want the ease and convenience of home while traveling: 45% said on-demand entertainment access that seamlessly connects to their personal streaming or gaming accounts is their #1 must-have during their stay. Likewise, 45% of hotel executives said this in-room entertainment set-up is what they're most likely to implement by 2025. 77% of travelers are interested in using automated messaging or chatbots for customer service requests at hotels. 43% want voice-activated controls for all amenities in their rooms (lights, curtains, door locks, etc.). 25% want room controls that auto-adjust temperature, lighting, and even digital art based on pre-shared preferences. A la carte-based hotel pricing Consumers are interested in a hotel model that lets them pay for just what they use. Hoteliers, in tandem, are looking at new service models that upsell everything from amenities to adventures: 81% of hoteliers expect a big service model shift between now and 2025. 49% strongly agreed that "special amenities and upgrades" are critical to their revenue strategy. 36% predict that the future of hotel revenue management will be underpinned by unbundling room rates, like a "basic economy" vs. "economy plus" model on airlines. For travelers: 87% said they would be likely to book a hotel that allowed them to pay only for amenities that they use. 54% are willing to pay more to choose their view; 38% to choose their room; 37% to check in early/check out late; 33% to use the spa, wellness, or fitness services; 32% to choose their room floor; and more. About Oracle Oracle offers integrated suites of applications plus secure, autonomous infrastructure in the Oracle Cloud. For more information about Oracle (NYSE: ORCL), please visit us at oracle.com.

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY

Travel-Friendly KODAK STEP Slim Instant Mobile Photo Printer Debuts at Pepcom

Kodak | June 24, 2022

Kodak brand licensee, C+A Global, announced the availability of the KODAK STEP Slim Instant Mobile Photo Printer at Pepcom’s Digital Experience in New York City. Sporting a more compact design, this newest addition to the STEP Instant Print Line is the perfect summer accessory. Its easy-to-use, travel-friendly design won’t take up unnecessary space, meaning it can go anywhere with you so that you never miss the chance to capture the moment on the spot. Other STEP instant print products include the KODAK STEP Instant Mobile Photo Printer, KODAK STEP Instant Print Digital Camera, and KODAK STEP Touch Instant Print Digital Camera.The new STEP Slim Instant Mobile Photo Printer still retains the characteristics that make the STEP Instant Print Line so popular, just packaged into a more compact design – at just three quarters of an inch. It prints out each 2” x 3” photo in under 60 seconds on sticky-backed Zink paper, eliminating the need to swap out ink cartridges. “Today, more than ever, people are constantly on-the-go. Consumers want products that fit into their more flexible lifestyles. They want quick, compact, and efficient. We created the STEP Slim Mobile Photo Printer to give users instant print action without sacrificing space or portability,” -Jessica Bitran, public relations director at C+A Global. Through the free KODAK STEP Prints App, you can connect the Slim Printer to your phone and gain instant access to the editing suite. In the app you can easily edit, brighten, add frames, and customize all your favorites from your camera roll before bringing them to life. The STEP Slim Instant Mobile Printer is available now on Amazon for $79.99. If you are attending Pepcom’s Digital Experience at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York City today, stop by our stand to check out the STEP Slim Printer and the vast product portfolio on display, which includes Kodak-licensed instant print products, projectors, and film converters. About Kodak Kodak is a technology company focused on imaging. We provide – directly and through partnerships with other innovative companies – hardware, software, consumables and services to customers in graphic arts, commercial print, publishing, packaging, entertainment and commercial films, and consumer products markets. With our innovative solutions portfolio and highly trusted brand, Kodak is helping customers around the globe to sustainably grow their own businesses and enjoy their lives. For additional information on Kodak, visit us at kodak.com, follow us on Twitter @Kodak, or like us on Facebook at Kodak. About C+A Global C&A Marketing, Inc., doing business as C+A Global, is a leading manufacturer, distributor and online reseller of consumer products, electronics, cameras and photographic equipment. Headquartered in Edison, N.J, C+A Global operates with over 50+ years of industry experience in its management team. The depth and breadth of C+A Global's inventory is constantly expanding, as is its presence and reputation in the consumer products marketplace. For additional information on these Kodak products, visit us at kodakphotoplus.com, follow us on Twitter @KodakPlus, like us on Facebook at Kodak Plus, and follow @KodakPlus on Instagram.

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY

Travel Super App Innovator, TRZMO Announces Launch of 'Moments' Feature

TRZMO | June 28, 2022

TRZMO has launched version 2.0 of its travel super-app at Phocuswright Europe 2022, the leading global travel conference. A highlight of the new version of the TRZMO app is the new 'Moments' feature which allows users to capture images with GPS data and share memories in their travel diary within the app. These Moments can be shared in the future on the TRZMO app and other social platforms.The app is free on Apple App store and Google Play store for a limited time to celebrate the exciting new 'Moments' feature. Moments helps to capture images of destinations and experiences to include in the TRZMO trip timeline. For each trip, users can add 'Moments' to look back on or share amazing discoveries made on a trip – from a hidden gem of a restaurant to a little known beach or a local shop that doesn't have a website, but deserves to be shared. The 'Moments' feature is also valuable for business travelers to record business expenses. This new feature makes the TRZMO app more engaging, and makes travel more interactive amongst people along for the trip, or looking for travel inspiration, recommendations or ideas of what to do, eat or experience. 'Moments' on TRZMO allow a traveler to record treasured experiences with a personal note or reflection right in the app which places it thoughtfully in the context of a trip, rather than just having photos lost in the shuffle of a smartphone album. "Since the launch of our strategic advisory board and funding of $1.2 million in Q1 2022, TRZMO has been committed to evolving our free flagship app into a true travel super-app. It replaces multiple apps with one dashboard to manage flight updates, gate changes, ground transport, loyalty programs and a myriad of travel logistics from duty-free shopping to dining, weather and time-zones coupled with AI-driven, real-time recommendations and special offers. The new Moments feature is a game-changer, making the app more personalized, inspiring and engaging," -Myank Jain, Founder and CEO of TRZMO.AI Advisory Board members include Josh Wiess, an angel investor focusing on early stage tech start-ups and Conor O'Mahoney, a proven travel industry entrepreneur and innovator, and a member of Hub Angel Investment Group. TRZMO is a consumer travel super app with robust functionality. At the Phocuswright Europe 2022 conference, the company is focused on growth, adoption and mutually-beneficial partnerships. About TRZMO TRZMO is the ultimate travel super-app, available free for a limited time on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. It presents flight itineraries, ground transportation recommendations and logistics, local weather, time, currency, and duty-free shopping recommendations on your route in one dashboard. TRZMO automatically pulls flight itineraries from your calendar, facilitating trip management without data entry like first-generation apps, and notifying you of real-time flight changes. It displays the best duty-free prices and offers along your route to be sure you get what you want at the best place, time and price with one search. TRZMO also manages loyalty cards so you can earn points, maximize value, and spend time enjoying travel instead of navigating a myriad of single-function apps. TRZMO also captures moments from travels, to save in your journey's timeline in the app or share on other platforms. Follow TRZMO on LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.

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Spotlight

For an entire year beginning in February 2010, travel bloggers Kyle and Briana of RollGlobal.org travelled to 19 countries in Asia, Africa and Europe, tracking their daily expenses to prove that it is not only possible to quit your day job and travel the world, but it can be affordable, too.

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