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  • Writer's pictureViktor Michel-Häggström

Top 4 Trending Hospitality Technologies in Dubai

Dubai is a city that is constantly changing, innovating and is at the forefront of technology. It may come as no surprise that in the post-pandemic era, we're seeing an acceleration of the adoption of hospitality technologies in the region.

Hotels may have different objectives. Whether it be redefining the guest experience, improving hotel operational efficiency, or used as a method to set them apart from competitors.

Are you curious to learn which hospitality technologies are gaining traction? In this article, we present the top 4 technology in the hospitality industry in Dubai's post-pandemic era. This article is divided into the sections:

The Hotel Industry In Dubai Post Pandemic

Dubai is one of the most popular destinations in the world. With a record-breaking 16.73 million visitors in 2019 and a goal to attract 25 million tourists by 2025, it's no wonder this city has such a large hotel supply.

Although Dubai was initially hit hard by the pandemic and suffered a slump in international visitor numbers. Recent hotel industry data shows that Dubai's tourism industry is both strong and resilient, leading the way in global tourism recovery.

Undoubtedly, Expo Dubai, which takes place in 2021, is the most important tourism event in UAE's history and plays a key role in the revival of the hospitality industry. Dubai has seen a huge supply of hotel inventory in preparation for this major event. In fact, its hotel inventory is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 8% between 2021 and 2023, of which 160,000 hotel rooms will be completed by October 2021.

However, with the massive amount of new hotel supply entering the market, industry experts fear that the market will become more difficult and competitive.

As a result, hotels are shifting focus to benchmarking indexes such as the RGI and ARI, as well as operational efficiency indicators to ensure they are performing well against the market. To achieve this, hoteliers are turning their attention to hotel technology.

Dubai - Hotel Industry Market and Adoption of Hospitality Technology

The Rising Adoption of Technology in Hotel Industry

.. But why are changing market dynamics driving the adoption of hotel technology in the UAE?

There may be several underlying reasons. But one explanation is the anticipated oversupply of hotels, changing consumer behavior AND challenges posed by the recovery of COVID-19. All these factors are changing hotels' perception of hotel technology. It is now seen as a key tool for the revival of the hospitality industry in the UAE.

This was evident at the HITEC Dubai 2021, which placed a special focus on emerging trends in hotel technology, with Frank Wolfe, CEO of HFTP, saying.

We are seeing the acceleration of technology for revenue management, cleaning tools such as robotics, remote check-in, room entry, guest communication and so much more.... Hospitality technology solutions are integral to the strategies for welcoming back guests and filling rooms

4 Trending Hospitality Technologies Shaping the Industry in Dubai

So what are the trends in the hospitality industry? The 4 emerging hotel technologies in Dubai right now are: Hotel CRM, Virtual and Augmented Reality, Revenue Management Tools and Contactless Check-in.

1. Hotel CRM Software

Dubai is known all over the world for its luxurious and hospitable service. Perhaps it's because of their original roots, where hosts did everything they could to ensure their guests had a pleasant stay.

It may come as no surprise that the guest experience is at the forefront of hotels' business strategies - and continues to grow in importance post-pandemic. Delivering an exceptional experience through personalization can only be truly achieved by consolidating all guest data into a centralized database in a hotel customer relationship management (CRM) system. Naturally, the importance of technology in hospitality industry, such as a CRM has grown.

A CRM functionalities are created to help hotels take full advantage of guest’s data by having access to their stay history, customer loyalty, and campaign conversions, as well as know more of their guests’ behavioral aspects during a staycation.

Now you may be wondering, CRM software for hotels has been around for a long time. So what's actually new? You can check out our recent blog post on important things you need to know about Hotel CRM, which will give you an idea of what you need to know in today's context for this type of hotel technology.

Hotel CRM Software, One of the top hospitality technology trends in Dubai

To cut the chase: Today, it's all about automating hotel CRM tasks and leveraging artificial technologies to gain unique insights into your guests and accurate guest segmentation.

All so that you can get a deep understanding of all your hotel guests to offer more personalized service and marketing communication.

2. Virtual And Augmented Reality

Dubai has always been a place of innovation and progress, and hotel virtual and augmented reality (AR) is gaining traction. The technological innovation in hospitality industry such as AR- technology is having momentum - there are numerous VR experiences that tourists can try in Dubai, from the world's largest VR park to Dreamscape in the Mall of Emirates.

Hotels in Dubai have started exploring how they can use this emerging hotel technology to enhance their guests' stay and create more interactive experiences.

Particularly AR hospitality technologies allow potential customers to see and get a feel for what to expect when they stay at hotels - even before they physically arrive on site. Aside from that, AR can offer interactive hotel rooms, gamification, and enhanced hotel environments!

Two great examples are Rove Hotels, which launched the first augmented reality game in Dubai earlier this year, and Burj Al Arab's immersive tour, which incorporates augmented reality to create a more immersive tour experience.

Hotel Augmented Reality in Dubai is a top hospitality technologies trend

3. AI-Powered Revenue Management Tools

Given the changing dynamics of the hotel market in the UAE, hoteliers are increasingly reliant on sophisticated revenue management tools to accurately price their rooms. After all, even the smallest RevPAR increase can help a hotel stay ahead of its competitors.

A revenue management tool typically takes into account factors such as location, occupancy rates, seasonality, and historical data. Although per se it is not a new technology in hospitality industry - for a long time, revenue management practices took more of a rule-based approach to pricing decisions.

Recently, however, revenue management systems have reached a new level where they incorporate automation and machine learning technology in pricing prediction. Wherein Artificial Intelligence (AI) with its advanced algorithms can analyze data from various sources to recommend better pricing strategies and optimizations.

Even though some people are still hesitant to rely on AI. Research by Microsoft has found that more than 94% of companies in the UAE use AI at the executive level - the highest among Middle Eastern countries!

4. Hotel Self Check In Kiosk with DTCM integration

In recent years, hotels with contactless hotel check-in have skyrocketed across the world, and it is anticipated that hotels in Dubai will follow this trend.

Now there are many reasons why hotels and guests love hotel kiosks. One of them is that queues at the front desk are reduced as guests can perform certain, if not all, check-in and check-out tasks themselves.

Another is that employees are relieved of mundane check-in tasks, allowing them to spend more time providing guests with personalized and engaging service.

We've earlier released a blog post about how hotel self-check-in kiosks can help hotels overcome the COVID-19 pandemic if you're interested to dig deeper into this topic.

Although most hotel kiosks in the market support RFID hotel key card door locking system and Magstripe cards. One thing that has always been an obstacle in Dubai is the compliance with local government regulations. However, we anticipate that there will be a hotel check-in kiosk soon with integrations to the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) in Dubai.

This interface will be a game-changer for the industry, as we expect hotel self-check-in kiosk with DTCM integration will make it easier to comply with local government regulations and provide a completely contactless self-check-in and seamless experience without the need for human intervention .Hence, we believe that the important of this kind of self-service technology in hospitality industry will continue.

Hotel self check in kiosk with DTCM integration is considered a top hospitality technology trend in Dubai

Summary of Top Hotel Technologies in Dubai

In this article, we have uncovered the key hospitality technologies trends in Dubai. The emirate is currently experiencing a changing environment, with many experts fearing an oversupply of hotel inventory post Expo Dubai.

With ever-changing consumer behavior and the devastating long-term effects of the pandemic, increasingly more hotels are turning to hotel technology to stay competitive.

Some of the hottest hospitality technologies right now are: Hotel CRM, virtual and augmented reality, contactless check-in (and we expect to see hotel check-in kiosk with DTCIM integration soon), and revenue management tools.

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