Last updated: 10:14 AM ET, Tue August 04 2015

Hotel Apps: Are Guests More Willing to Share Personal Info Today?

Travel Technology | Ryan Rudnansky | August 04, 2015

Hotel Apps: Are Guests More Willing to Share Personal Info Today?

Infographic courtesy of HFTP/Dr. Cristian Morosan and Dr. Agnes DeFranco, Conrad N. Hilton College, University of Houston

More than one-third (34 percent) of guests are willing to disclose some level of personal information on a hotel app, according to a new study supported by Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP).

Moreover, an app’s overall benefit to the guest, whether it elicits positive emotions and its general trustworthiness make a big difference in whether a guest decides to share personal info.

According to the study (see infographic below), 42 percent of guests trust hotel apps, but another 42 percent have privacy concerns about this type of app.

How do hotel app developers ultimately get through to guests?

Well, according to the study, guests are much more willing to disclose room preference, room amenity preference (i.e. pillow type), gender, smoking preference and dining preference and much less into sharing credit card information, income, a driver's license/passport number and geographic location.

Guests were particularly sensitive to giving out credit card information (rating 4.04 out of 5 in terms of sensitivity), their driver's license/passport number (3.96) and their income (3.51).

In other words, the type of personal information requested plays a big part in guest compliance with the app’s terms.

Also, while 32 percent of the study’s respondents said they carry one mobile device with them, 55 percent of respondents carry two or three mobile devices with them. This is a potential gold mine for a hotel app developer able to win the trust of guests, as the developer can gain valuable marketing information about their searching and browsing habits across multiple different devices, from desktops and laptops to smartphones and tablets.

“Mobile communications is quickly growing as a popular means for hotels to interact with their guests, and this information helps these organizations plan mobile outreach tools,” said Frank Wolfe, CAE, CEO of HFTP Global, via a release.

The study was authored by Agnes DeFranco CHAE, Ed.D., and Cristian Morosan, Ph.D., from the C.N. Hilton College, University of Houston. HFTP will continue to publish a series of infographics based on the broader research done by DeFranco and Morosan at HFTP Connect.


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