• Nica San Pedro

Traditional vs Contactless: What is The Best Way to Check-In Hotel Guests?

The pandemic has brought a lot of changes in businesses worldwide, and one of the industries which was greatly affected is the hotel industry. Due to this, many hotels reduced their workforce which was estimated to a total of 100.8 million job losses in 2020 worldwide. The hotels’ performances were at stake and the quality of service has not met the guests’ satisfaction.


With the urge to improve guest experiences despite the current challenges brought by the pandemic, most hotels worldwide have adopted the advancement of technology. Hotels initially were afraid that the use of technology solutions would compromise the human aspect of the hotel industry.


However, that mentality has been changed and hotels are now keen on new technology to ease their operations and help the employees be more productive on other given duties and responsibilities.


One of the key findings by Shiji Group is that 63% of hoteliers say technology allows employees to focus on other, more important tasks.


As we go through this article, we will distinguish the difference between traditional hotel check-in and contactless check-in and know more of its significance in the hotel industry.


Below are the topics highlighted in the article.


What is a Check-in Process?


One of the main stages during a guest journey is the check-in procedures in the hotel. Check-in is the process where the guest announces his/her arrival at the hotel. It also can be described as:

"The process of guest registration at the reception desk".

Traditionally, the process starts when the guest arrives at the hotel and heads to the front desk/reception desk. The guest is being identified and has their details checked and confirmed. The hotel key card will then be activated upon room assignment and handed over to the guest, whilst the front desk agent is giving the guest an introduction to the hotel.


But how does contactless check-in work?


Whether through the hotel kiosk or mobile check-in, contactless check-in starts after a reservation has been made and confirmed by the hotel. Normally a link or a QR code will be sent to the guest to initialize the pre-check-in through their mobile or upon arrival using the kiosk.


Basic information has been integrated through the PMS system and is reflected on the pre-check-in platform. Guests just need to review their information, avail of add-ons or upgrade their rooms if desired, upload identification card as mandated by hotels, fill in contact details and any special requests to hotels. Then guest can either use their mobile to unlock the room assigned to them or collect key cards at the reception or can even be dispensed from the kiosk, whichever is available in the hotel.


Even before the pandemic, it is evidently given that contactless entry has been a progressively feature for hotel guests. According to a survey from Openkey, 46% of travelers say a mobile key solution is an important on-property feature for them. Guest satisfaction scores drop by 50% when there’s a 5-minute waiting time during the traditional check-in.


Statistics - How likely the guest will choose a smartphone check in enabled hotel

Infographics: Courtesy by Software Advice


In 2015, based on research by Software Advice, a combined 60% of respondents are more likely to choose a hotel that allows guests to check-in and open doors with a smartphone than a hotel that doesn’t.


Before casting your vote into which check-in procedure works best for hotels, let’s first go deeper into the pros and cons of having a traditional check-in process and a contactless check-in process.


The Pros and Cons of Traditional and Contactless Check-In


The comparison has been going on in the hotel industry since the evolution of technology solutions. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of both hotel check-in procedures.


Traditional Check-In

Pros and cons of traditional hotel check in

Image: Courtesy by Freepik


Contactless Check-In

Pros and cons of contactless hotel check in
Contactless hotel check in via mobile

Image: Courtesy by Freepik


Is This the Right Time to Change?


The new era has made the contactless check-in a standard in hotel operations. Many hotels headed by big and international chains in the hotel industry have switched their traditional check-in procedure to contactless check-in to ease the basic operations of handling guests’ arrivals. This was even fully driven due to the pandemic in 2020.


Many hotels implemented the new procedure by partnering with a selection of hotel technology suppliers in the market. The growth of such software has helped guests feel more comfortable and at ease on staying in hotels.


It may be the right time to ask... should we adapt the new technology? Or keep the traditional way of checking in guests?


Whether you have decided to apply the contactless check-in technology solution in your hotel or still hesitant to do so, we at Metasphere Technologies Inc. are willing to discuss further with you and provide more information or clarification for you to help with your decision making.


Together let’s build the bridge to modernization with Metasphere’s contactless check-in solutions. Schedule a demo or contact us directly today for a free consultation.


About Metasphere Technologies Inc.,


Metasphere Technologies Inc. has helped hotels to stay globally competitive for over 15 years through its market-leading product portfolio of solutions built on I.T. technologies in process management, business intelligence and service-oriented architecture. Click here to learn more about Metasphere's products.


Metasphere Technologies Inc’ has a team of talented professionals based across the world, including USA, China, United Arab Emirates and the Philippines. The company’s solutions are installed in leading hotel chains and multinational enterprises worldwide.




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