Accessibility Is More Important to Travelers Than Ever
The Growing Importance of Accessibility in the Hospitality Industry
As lifestyles continue to evolve, awareness and recognition of the need for accessibility and inclusivity in all aspects of life has become an important driving force. This is especially true within the hospitality industry. According to the Expedia Group 2023 Traveler Value Index, an astounding 70% of people are more likely to select travel options with greater inclusivity, even if it comes at a higher cost.
With people prioritizing hospitality venues that accommodate all kinds of travelers, it’s time for the industry to step up and ensure that all customers feel welcome and taken care of.
Accessibility Is by Design
Is your building up to snuff when it comes to accessibility? In the hospitality industry today, travelers consider that the bare minimum. Many hotels and resorts that were built before 2010, are only legally required to fulfill the 1991 ADA Standards, even though new requirements were passed in 2010.
Even if your building meets all the legal requirements, it’s important to look for new ways to improve inclusivity when performing renovations or remodels. For example, the ADA only requires 60% of your building’s entrances to be accessible, but if all your accessible entrances are inconvenient to get to or if they’re not evenly dispersed around your building, you may want to make some changes.
When possible, you may want to opt for a design firm that specializes in accessible buildings. This can take the guess work out of any adjustments.
Training Your Staff Appropriately
Your staff can make a meaningful impact on how well accommodated your guests feel, increasing the likelihood they’ll visit again and refer your property to friends, family and colleagues. You want to make sure your front-of-house team knows the operational best practices of both your accessibility options and what they can do to help guests further. Here are some ideas for improving your staff inclusivity:
Ensure at least one person in your front-of house crew knows American Sign Language (ASL)
Provide training for your teams on accommodating service animals and mobility equipment
Include questions about accessibility accommodations in check in and booking protocol
Making these efforts can reap rewards when it comes to making your guests feel well-cared for.
Showing Value Where Others Don’t
According to the Expedia Group report, only 52% of travelers report seeing inclusive options when booking trips. If you’re looking for a way to differentiate your hotel, resort, or leisure venue, focusing on accessibility in the hospitality industry could be paramount to success.
When your lodging has the full package and accommodates all guests, you won’t just gain visitors with disabilities. Showing you care about all your guests can establish more brand loyalty across the board.
Are you looking for more ways to improve your operation? Learn more about Foodbuy Hospitality today.