Six Ways Hotels Can Benefit From NFC Technology
We all know that Near Field Communication, or NFC, is a technological standard based on radio-frequency identification (or RFID), which doesn’t require an internal power supply to operate. NFC can transmit information wirelessly over short distances. Now, you might recognize NFC as the same technology that allows secure payments from mobile pay systems (i.e. Google Pay, Samsung Pay and Apple Pay); this is known as “contactless” payment. Already popular, use of contactless forms of payment have skyrocketed over the last year fueled by the current pandemic.
How Does It Work?
Users can put their phone within the reach of an NFC “tag” or reader — usually between four to six centimeters. And then, they can:
- Request a service
- Make a payment
- Register for a program or
- Access information and more
As NFC grows more popular across many industries, the hotel industry is catching wind of this technology.
Here are six ways that hotels can benefit from NFC technology:
- Upgrades On Room Keys
“Today, people don’t want to have to rely on a physical key to get into their hotel rooms,” says Charles Gilmore, an NFC expert at Eliteassignmenthelp, “Especially if they happen to lose the physical key, while they’re out and about. But with NFC technology, hotel room keys can be transmitted directly to the guests’ smartphones, so that they wouldn’t have to use the traditional magnetic strip cards. And the best part is that the key can be transmitted to them even before they check in to their hotel room. This allows not only automatic check-ins, but also improves security, since the NFC-enabled room key won’t get easily lost, erased, or counterfeited like magnetic strip cards can be.”
- Automatic Wi-Fi Access
In today’s world, who doesn’t want free Wi-Fi? Since hotels want to capitalize on excellent customer experiences, Wi-Fi is just another crowd-pleaser that can be implemented to enhance a customer’s experience.
NFC tags can be configured to give guests instant Wi-Fi information and access to a Wi-Fi network without the need to type in a password. You heard right – guests do not have to enter a password when you enable NFC tags to give them access to Wi-Fi. By placing one or multiple tags in either the rooms or the common areas, everyone can access the network by simply moving their smartphones close to the tag; and outside individuals won’t be able to access this Wi-Fi without booking a room first.
- Payments Made Easy
The good news is payments using NFC technology are already possible and frequent in many establishments (i.e. supermarkets). And now, NFC is showing up on the scene in the hotel industry.
Ideally, guests can use an app to connect their credit or debit card, and then move or “tap” their smartphones towards the contactless terminal at checkout. Their payment will instantly be made. Therefore, there’s no need for guests to hassle with physical credit cards or PIN numbers when they pay for their stay.
- Better Maintenance
Now, who said that only hotel guests can benefit from NFC technology? Yes, even maintenance workers can benefit from NFC by having all their equipment properly identified with tags. They can use an app on their smartphones to connect to specially designed tags, and then use those tags to gain instant access to relevant equipment and maintenance information. In addition, users (both employees and guests) can more easily report failures in equipment using NFC technology.
- Better Housekeeping
Much like maintenance teams, hotel housekeeping teams can benefit from NFC tags.
“Hotel housekeepers can instantly access to-do lists on the mobile app for each location,” says Bethany Stephensen, a tech writer at OXEssays. “With an NFC-enabled system, managers can also check the status of housekeeping operations in real-time, making it easier for them to track housekeepers’ progress, as they tend to their assigned tasks.”
- Personal Presence Registry
NFC tags can help monitor the presence of all staff members (i.e. maintenance technicians, security guards, etc.). Since they must engage with the NFC for their daily tasks, it’s considered an indirect way to ensuring that all employees are at the right place at the right time. In addition, these tags can provide indicators on each staff member’s daily performance.
NFC technology is becoming a game changer in the hotel industry enhancing customers’ overall hotel experience. Although it’s still in its early stages in the hospitality industry, NFC technology is a step in the right direction to providing improved hotel services.