Contactless payment methods are becoming increasingly popular throughout the hospitality sector, and for good reason. They embrace some of the most cutting-edge technology while providing your guests with a more user-friendly experience. It is important to take a look at this concept in greater detail.

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What is a Contactless Payment?

As the name suggests, this type of transaction enables users to avoid using cash or the physical implementation of credit cards. It instead relies upon wireless methods such as RFID technology. Debit cards, credit cards and even some smartphones are able to support this technique. Users will simply place their card or device close to a near-point terminal. The transaction can thereafter be completed.

You will also be interested to know that no type of PIN is required in order for a payment to be processed. This is quite convenient for those who are on the go or who may be within a public area. In order to ensure superior levels of safety, contactless payments are limited to a certain amount at any given time. The good news is that this very same technology has now entered into the hospitality industry and it can have a direct impact upon the experiences of your guests.

How Do Contactless Payments Work Within the Hospitality Sector?

The good news is that contactless payments are rather easy and straightforward. Devices which support this technology will display a WiFi logo that is turned 90 degrees on its side. Let’s imagine for a moment that a guest wishes to make a reservation at your premises. He or she will first hold the card or device within two inches of the processing machine when prompted. Assuming that the system recognises the card and approves the transaction, the guest will be notified with a green light, a beep or a similar means.

As mentioned previously, credit and debit cards can likewise be connected to a smartphone by downloading a dedicated application provided by the institution in question. They can then process a transaction (such as securing a hotel reservation) with a simple tap on the screen. Certain types of smart watches are also beginning to accept this contactless payment method and it is therefore slated to become quite popular in the near future.

4 Reasons Why Contactless Payments are getting Popular in the Hospitality Industry

As can be seen from the observations mentioned above, one of the most pronounced hospitality trends involved contactless payment systems. It therefore stands to reason that managers need to consider their implementation in order to remain one step ahead of the competition. Let us now examine some of the most pronounced advantages that your property can expect to leverage when employing this type of cutting-edge technology.


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1. A Viable Hygienic Solution

You are already aware that the recent coronavirus outbreak has had a massive impact upon the hospitality industry. This is why the notion of “business as usual” needs to be slightly redefined. Guests will be more concerned about hygiene than ever before. This trend is likely to continue for years into the future. Payments which preclude the use of physical contact are therefore set to become some of the most sought-after methods. Hotels that are able to offer such services will undoubtedly rise head and shoulders above their competition.

2. Fast and Secure

Experts agree that contactless payments generally require only 15 seconds to complete. This is roughly twice as fast as a debit or credit card. Such rapidity is obviously convenient for those who are pressed for time or who have just completed the final leg of a long journey.

Furthermore, the hospitality sector can benefit from these payment methods due to the fact that this system employs a host of unique encryption algorithms. In the event that a card (or a phone) happens to become lost, personal information cannot be made available to a third party. This also applies to duplicate transactions that are suspected of being fraudulent. Such points will undoubtedly provide your guests with an extra peace of mind during their stay. Contactless payments utilise an advanced form of wireless encryption, so the chances of data becoming lost or corrupted are virtually eliminated.

3. Superior Levels of Customer Satisfaction

The end-user experience is obviously critical if you hope to enjoy higher booking and retention rates. Contactless payments offer a streamlined means for users to complete a transaction in a much quicker time frame. Another important point to mention is that many individuals will actually spend more if the transaction process is simplified. Thus, these methods can sometimes be employed to offer upgrades and similar in-house amenities that might otherwise be overlooked by the guest. This brings us to the final (and perhaps most relevant) point.

4. The Ability to Offer Bespoke Loyalty Programmes

Hotel managers are well aware of the benefits associated with loyalty programmes. A handful of examples include:

  • VIP rewards increase brand recognition;
  • More positive reviews on websites such as TripAdvisor and Booking.com;
  • An increased likelihood that guests will return to the property in the future.

Loyalty programmes within the hospitality industry can also offer guests points each time they utilise a contactless payment system. Points may be allocated to provide reduced room rates, discounts at an in-house restaurant and similar attractive offers that will enable your franchise or boutique property to stand out from the masses. Finally, it is important to mention that building a positive brand image in these critical times is key to long-term success.

Video: How Does Contactless Payment Work?

Below you find a video which shows how contactless payments exactly works.

 

Examples of Contactless Payment Devices

You might be aware that contactless payment methods have existed in one form or another since as far back as 2007. It therefore stands to reason that there are a number of unique devices which can be used other than credit cards and smartphones. Each of these offers its own set of bespoke abilities and in order to better understand the options at your disposal. Some of the most well-known devices which can be used to make these types of payments include:

  • Watches
  • Key Fobs
  • Stickers
  • Fitness trackers
  • Some types of wristbands

In the future, these devices may even be used for other purposes such as gaining secure access to a building or opening a specific door.

Examples of Contactless Payment Systems

The hospitality sector can leverage several advantages of modern contactless payment systems and you will be pleased to learn that a host of options are at your disposal. This provides you and your team with a greater sense of flexibility; enabling you to adopt the correct software package based around the needs of your current organisation. Let’s take a look at some industries which have already begun to take advantage of tap-and-pay platforms.

Numerous Credit Card Agencies

It only stands to reason that the majority of credit card companies have chosen to employ contactless payment systems due to the advantages outlined above. Not only does this move indicate that they are able to remain one step ahead of the curve, but such modern technology helps to ensure that they remain highly competitive within today’s marketplace.

Banks and Building Societies

Large banks have likewise appreciate the fact that contactless payment systems are here to stay. As most already provide their customers with dedicated mobile phone applications, it is quite easy for this novel software to be implemented when making a transaction. Customers can now enjoy a quick, hands-free and simple payment system which is at their immediate disposal. A growing number of cash points have likewise adopted this software.

Google Pay

The Internet has been just as keen to adopt these measures. When we consider the fact that consumers now rely heavily upon purchases within the digital domain, some massive companies now offer contactless payments. Google Pay is arguably the most well-known provider and physical retailers who are equipped to handle this service can offer their customers yet another secure means of completing a transaction. As opposed to a standard credit card, an encrypted code is sent to the appropriate account when a payment is made.

Apple Pay

Those who own a device such as an iPhone or iWatch are likely to already possess the Apple Wallet application. Apple Wallet enables consumers to purchase goods at brick-and-mortar locations (much like Google Pay) and this system is supported by addition al third-party apps. It is likewise possible to send funds to family members or friends via the use of this service.

Samsung Pay

Samsung Pay is a bit different in relation to the two systems mentioned above. In this case, users can store their personal financial information (such as credit card details) directly within the application. This is then used to make a payment at any checkout counter equipped with contactless payment software. The process is straightforward. First, the user will span an image of their credit card or a nearby bar code (such as one found on a product label). Once a screen tap confirms the purchase, the transaction will take place automatically. Samsung also offers additional amenities such as rewards points when specific transactions are made.

Fitbit Pay

Fitbit is a popular software package which allows users to track and improve their current fitness levels. This is why you might be surprised to learn that it also offers a tap-to-pay option. Similar to other systems, users will simply add their debit or credit card information to the tracker or Fitbit watch. Transactions will remain completely secure and they are accepted at all locations which support contactless payments.

Contactless Check-In With a Mobile App

Mobile check-in services are quickly becoming one of the mainstays of the hotel sector. This is the very same reason why managers and stakeholders need to appreciate the options and benefits at their disposal. How does this type of technology function? What are its primary advantages and how can it be used to develop customer loyalty over time? The article “Mobile Check-In App for Hotels: What Are The Benefits?” will examine these and other metrics in order to provide you with the big picture. In days partially defined by an increasing level of competition, there is no doubt that innovative approaches will make all of the difference in the world.

It is now entirely clear to see why contactless payments are becoming extremely popular throughout the entire hospitality sector. As this technology continues to evolve, even more properties will take advantage of all that it has to offer. This is why it is a good idea to offer such an option to your guests. While there is certainly nothing wrong with traditional approaches to customer service, providing clients with even more payment options will ensure a pleasant and rewarding experience over time.

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