Last week saw the launch of the first online check in and check out program for hotels from Marriott, one of the world’s leading hotel groups. As part of the global roll out for the Mobile Checkout App, I was lucky enough to be invited along to their luxury Bangkok Marriott Hotel Sukhumvit (on Soi 57 in Thonglor) to see how exactly this app works.
The new App (which is available free on Itunes) means you can not only book your hotel online but also saves you the hassle of queuing up to check in and check out by allowing you to do this via your smartphone in a few simple steps, saving valuable time for the seasoned or simply impatient traveler (like me!)
At some point after 4pm on the day before you are due to check in, a push notification is sent to your mobile phone asking you if you would like to proceed with the online check in. You then input the time of your arrival (allowing at least 2 hours for the hotel in question to ensure your room is ready) and receive confirmation of your check in when your room is ready.
Sure enough when I arrived at the hotels Mobile Check in desk, a little after 2pm on the Saturday, I simply handed over my passport (required by law to ensure all immigration details are kept on file) and was immediately presented with my room key meaning that I was happily relaxing in my room less than 5 minutes after arriving in the hotel.
The check out process is equally straightforward with a message being sent to your phone sometime before 6am on your departure date asking when you would like to check out. As all your credit card details are stored online with the app this means that you can then leave the hotel without having to stop by the front desk to sign anything, which again saves you valuable time and the standard queues one can usually expect.
I have long been a fan of the airline industries online check in facilities and think that it is great that similar technological innovations for the hotel industry are being developed as well. I’m sure that the launch of the mobile check in/check out app is going to be something that the smartphone generation takes to quickly and look forward to seeing how Marriott plan to develop this and their “Travel Brilliantly” ethos further.