What does NFC technology bring to hotels?

NFC (Near Field Communication) is a technology standard based on identification by RFID (radio-frequency identification) that does not require an internal power supply to operate and can transmit information wirelessly from small distances. It is the same technology that allows secure payments from mobile (such as Google Pay, Samsung Pay and Apple Pay) known as "contactless", contactless payment.


A user simply puts their phone within the reach of an NFC "tag" and is instantly presented with a content or an action is completed: request a service, register for a proposal or make a payment.


How to apply it to improve the customer experience?

By using this wireless technology, the hotel can facilitate authentication such as access to the room in a safe and simple way. An application example is the use to replace keys and magnetic stripe cards. See an example where Meliá Hotels International is already using this technology in its hotels in Mallorca.


The electronic chip element can be embedded in supports such as bracelets, pendants, key chains, pins, badges or even customizable semi-permanent tattoos (designed to last as long as the guests' stay); or in fixed sites such as access points.


For the opening of The Cove, their hotel in the Bahamas, Atlantis Resorts expected the arrival of hundreds of celebrities so they wanted an identifier that was elegant, discreet and exclusive. Atlantis hired a temporary tattoo solution with NFC chip, which in addition to access control, allowed guests to interact with the brand from the tattoo using their smartphones to launch a dynamic experience. By bringing their mobile phone closer to the tattoo, guests gained access to real-time information for special events, weekend activities and other exclusive and personalized content. The result was a perfect, integrated and completely individual experience for each guest, at all times.


This technology allows, with each interaction, to obtain information on the activity of the guest in real time: access, consumption, as well as online feedback or pick up requests for services, among others.


The choice between a support or another depends on the ease of use, risk of loss or security due to misuse, such as when they can be shared with unauthorized persons.


One of the uses that most connect with customer service is that of mobile  access , where the customer mobil operates as a key for opening the room or other areas of the hotel, just bringing the mobile to the access point / lock . In this case, the customer, upon registration, receives an email message or sms to download a small access application which they can use throughout their stay.


In addition to opening doors from mobile or other supports, NFC technology can allow a wide variety of applications, such as providing a Wi-Fi connection, making payments, receiving VIP treatment or speeding up a registration, among others.


For example, NFC tags can be configured to give instant access to a Wi-Fi network without the need to insert a password. By placing one or more labels in the rooms or common areas, everyone can access the network simply by bringing their phone to the label, the guests would not need to write a password and, on the other hand, would be protected from access to connections from the outside.


With an application connected to a credit or debit card, with NFC all that is needed is to bring the mobile phone to a "contactless" terminal at the time of purchase and payment will be made instantly. No card, no PIN, facilitating the transaction without friction.


Also in the operation of the hotel

NFC technology is not only useful from the perspective of the guest experience. Areas such as maintenance, security or room service could benefit from having equipment and facilities identified with NFC tags.


This technology allows hotel staff to use their phones to instantly access all the relevant information about a device and the maintenance it needs. By interacting with NFC tags, the flaw could be automatically registered in a system and made accessible to responsible managers or technicians, and report the activity carried out, all from the mobile.


It can be equally useful for the control of personnel activity, from maintenance technicians to surveillance service, since they are asked to read the labels for their daily tasks, and the interactions can be monitored in real time; This is a way to ensure that tasks are completed in a timely manner.


HOTELES QUALITY collaborates with Euroamtec (a company that helps connect brands with their customers through labels and smart objects) to adapt it to accommodation and catering solutions.


Learn more about NFC applications in the hotel and restaurant sector here.

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