Chairman of the Hotel Association of Swaziland (HOTAS) Mark Ward


How many times have you kicked back at a hotel only to find the Wi-Fi is barely trickling through; or worse
… limited to the lobby? So why is your hotel the same? Poor Wi-Fi can be one of the most frustrating things we come across on a day-to-day basis, and more often than not it has a huge impact on customer satisfaction. It is
for this reason that Chairman of the Hotel Association of Swaziland (HOTAS) Mark Ward has urged internet providers to make sure that they provide the most effective internet service. “The truth is, poor connectivity doesn’t just impact guests; it impacts the hotel itself. So if the hotel has poor internet connection that may mean a lot negative than polsitive,” said Ward. He continued to say that nowadays hotel guests don’t just arrive with one
smartphone to do their online browsing; they bring a surplus of laptops and tablets in order to enhance the online experience whilst they are away from home, which can cause huge problems for the hotel and its guests. Ward said it was very important that local internet providers up their game in providing this crucial service because with
hundreds of devices trying to connect to a hotel Wi-Fi network at the same time, there is a high risk of reduced internet speed. Ward touched on another crucial aspect of the internet whereby he said good internet connection would allow hotels too to do their businesses online with great ease. Among the businesses that hotels can do
include online bookings for both local and international guests. Unscheduled downtime is guaranteed to have an effect on the way a hotel operates as well as costing money. “If you can’t receive and process online bookings, you are likely to miss out on a lot of potential profit. As the online community grows, more of your bookings are made online, and one simple outage could be hugely financially damaging. On top of lost revenue, we still have to pay our staff’s wages even though they can’t operate due to the lack of internet, accruing even more loss,” elaborated Ward. He said at the end of the day it was not only the hotel that was affected by the lack of Wi-Fi, but customers are too. Recent studies indicated that 73% of people aged 35 and younger wouldn’t return to a hotel with poor Wi-Fi and so hotel owners probably understand that many of their bookings are made by repeat customers.

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