As some of you may already know, I have a personal mission to encourage all hospitality & tourism outlets to offer a reasonable period of free Wi-Fi – in fact, to keep on at this like a dog with a bone is one of my professional New Year’s Resolutions!
Here are my top reasons you should give free Wi-Fi at your hospitality or tourism business;
- A recent survey by Hotels.com reported that free Wi-Fi is a must when choosing a hotel room and that it is now the primary in-room and hotel perk that they will base their decision around.
- 31% of those surveyed by hotels.com said they expect free Wi-Fi in a hotel now.
- People are more likely to mention and talk about your business on social media if they are given the opportunity to connect easily with free Wi-Fi.
- You’ll encourage roaming sales people to use your cafe or bar for meetings with people that live locally and will probably come back.
- Everybody knows how inexpensive internet is, by charging your customers; they know it’s just another way for you to make more money on top of their coffee.
- It can encourage people to stay in your cafe or restaurant for longer & spend more money.
- If you don’t, you’ll be put to shame by the Canyons Resort in Utah in the US, who have managed to offer free Wi-Fi from Canyon to Canyon covering its entire hotel, meeting space and ski fields!
- You’ll also be behind this little town in rural Otago that offers free Wi-Fi throughout the whole main street. (It works; I used to drive straight through!)
- By adding a landing page you’ll encourage more people to Like your brand on Facebook, Follow you on Twitter or check-in on FourSquare.
- The technology to set up a secure free Wi-Fi spot is now very affordable & the ongoing costs minimal.
- You’ll actively encourage new customers.
- If they can run to the cost of offering free Wi-Fi on buses and planes, why can’t you?
- You stop the complaints from people who expect it.
- Giving something for free will make you feel good inside.
- Most importantly, because your clients wants it!
If you oversee the website of an RTO or DMO why not try adding ‘places you can access free Wi-Fi’ to your home page. It will be great for your visitors and a compelling incentive for your operators to start offering it!
Do you offer free Wi-Fi at your business? Do you plan to during 2012?
Do you run a travel site? Do you let people filter by properties that offer free Wi-Fi?
Do you look for places with free Wi-Fi as a consumer? Would you like to see more places offer free WiFi?
I’d love to hear your thoughts as a business operator and as a consumer.
As always, if you enjoyed the blog post then please share it on Twitter and let other people have their say too!