These past two years have many of us looking in the mirror and not recognizing what we are seeing in there. We feel like this is exactly what the whole hospitality industry is going through as well, given the unprecedented impact that the covid-19 pandemic has inflicted on the sector and everyone somehow related to it. Nevertheless, the somewhat unfortunate past should not prevent us from looking into the brand new world – and this is precisely what we are doing today by examining the top hospitality industry trends likely to gain momentum in 2022.
Bleisure travelers & hotel workspaces
Are you used to holding up a straight face during that important end-of-year meeting while feeling cozy in your pajama pants? Well, looks like this trend – or at least a somewhat more formalized version of it - is here to stay. What we are talking about is called bleisure – business + leisure as one might figure out – which is expected to increase in popularity throughout 2022. As more and more people consider switching to hybrid or fully digital office presence, hotels will need to adapt to such changes and make their spaces zoom calls friendly.
Holistic hospitality, health & well-being
Mindfulness and wellness were already increasingly popular even before the grand calamity. Now, with covid-19 lingering just around the corner, it is only natural that the health industry will remain integral in 2022. Alongside stringent health measures, holistic hospitality is expected to continue catering to the mind, body, and soul.
Digitalized guest experiences
Mobile check-in and contactless payments have also been gaining speed as a way to reduce the volume of unnecessary in-person interaction. Not particularly known for its fast high-tech adoption rates, the hospitality industry will have to adapt to remain relevant, as the guests will start expecting such services as fingerprint or face recognition to be ubiquitous during their journeys as well.
Another star trend that has managed to capture the hoteliers’ minds over a few past years is personalization. Thanks to ever-growing volumes of available data, customized offerings are on a stable route to becoming all the craze in the upcoming years, as such propositions could make the existent services and amenities even more attractive to potential clients.
Experience economy & essentialism
The pandemic has highlighted many ways in which the current lifestyle of large parts of the population is not sustainable. Given the increasing consciousness in this regard, experts predict a spike in travelers willing to spend their money wisely, while making a positive impact on the environment. Not only will guests consider picking conscious travel operators, but they will appreciate unique experiences that are aimed at supporting the local communities.
Asset management strategy
An integral part of the hospitality industry is the practice of efficient asset management. Nevertheless, recently, it has evolved to incorporate more high-level data analysis integrations. This trend seems to remain in vogue in 2022, which will also witness an even further separation between the management of hotel operations and real-estate assets, allowing companies to focus on their business model and streamline processes across the board.
After being stuck in their houses with spouses and children, an increasing share of travelers may feel in need of a solo vacation. Establishments will need to customize their offerings by destroying the barriers between hotel staff and guests, repurposing certain common areas to evoke homeliness and create an informal atmosphere.
Guests will become ever more focused on booking through responsible travel operators that aim to protect the planet. Consequently, the management of the hospitality establishments will have to bear in mind eco-consciousness in all the procedures and operations.
Virtual & augmented reality
Companies are increasingly adopting VR and AR technologies as they proved to gain in popularity during the pandemic. The hospitality industry will need to capitalize on innovations such as virtual tours to create a digital environment for consumers to be able to get a demo version of their stay even before they book their holiday – a trend that is expected to only rise.