How to Respond to Some Of the Most Common Hotel Reviews During COVID-19 (With Real Examples)

September 15, 2020
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With the surging crisis, hotels have been gearing up to revise their SOPs to ensure that they are able to adapt better to the changing travelers’ needs. There is no denying the fact that the spread of COVID-19 has brought about a drastic change in the way the visitors look at the entire hotel guest experience now. Today, every individual aspect, right from the check-in to room amenities to safety is being gauged accurately to make sure that a property is well-equipped to accommodate the changing travelers’ expectations.

One of the best ways of knowing these “new” travelers’ aspirations is by looking at some of the most common hotel reviews. While Pre-Corona, it might still be a normal thing to spot flaws regarding the bad service or safety issues, it has become all the more crucial today to pay proper attention to these factors as hoteliers cannot afford even a tad bit of lapse in service! Due to the global outbreak, guests are apprehensive to travel. Hence booking a property where everything is up to the mark is the least they can ask for!

If your standard operating procedures are not in place or still in the process of reform, it is highly likely that you’ll get some of the complaints in the reviews which together constitute some of the “most common hotel reviews during COVID-19”.
In this article, we have classified these common hotel guest complaints during the pandemic into various sub-topics and have suggested the ways in which you can accurately respond to these queries, based on your course of action.

1. Safety

Online Hotel Reviews Regarding Safety Concerns

common hotel reviews regarding safety concerns during COVID

With the increasing reliance on technology and going “all contactless” to provide a safe guest experience, the concern over guestroom security is also seen mounting side-by-side. With “virtual check-in” or “keyless entries” gaining traction, the vulnerability of guest-room door locks has dragged guest safety concerns to the forefront.

It is true that the complaints regarding the key issues or doors not behaving properly had been there already before the advent of Corona. But today, this aspect can assume an entirely different form and might altogether count as an “unsafe” feature being rolled out by hotels, leading to a bad review score and an overall bad reputation. Even complaints regarding neighborhoods, lost items, etc. fall under safety concerns and issues and you’ll find them featuring as the “common hotel guest complaints during a stay.”

Let us look at it, part-by-part:

• Common Hotel Reviews Regarding Safety: Bad Doors And Improper Key Functioning

common hotel reviews key malfunction

 

For instance,

Key problems. No access!
Rating: 7/10
By: Samuel


“Nice experience overall. However, the first set of “keys” gave us a tough time. Was unable to lock the door. Went to the front desk for assistance. Got it exchanged! Please make sure that this does not happen again. As it is we’re concerned about safety due to COVID. It’s bothersome and unsafe.”

 

Your response,

Hi Samuel,

Thank you for taking the time to share your valuable feedback with us. While we’re happy that we could provide you a pleasant experience during your stay, we regret the inconvenience caused to you due to the issue with the room keys. Issues like these are pretty uncertain, but we are extremely sorry that this happened. Your feedback in this regard has been noted and we’re looking into it to make sure that this does not happen again. Currently, we are also in the process of rolling out the new “electronic key” contactless feature which we believe would be helpful in providing our guests easy access and will, therefore, minimize the dependence on the front desk. We are trying our best to ensure the safety of the guests at each and every touchpoint, right from the check-in to the check-out, and in no way do we want them to feel as though they are “unsafe” with us. Please consider this an uncommon instance, and allow us to bring about the necessary improvements in this regard with the help of your valuable feedback. We hope this did not take away much from your overall experience with us, and we eagerly look forward to hosting you more successfully in the future. We are sanguine that you shall notice the difference on your next visit!

Best Regards,
Arnold World Hotel
Anne, Guest Relations Team

Common Hotel Reviews Regarding Safety: Theft Or Other Unexpected Occurrences

common hotel reviews regarding theft

 

For instance,

Felt unsafe
Rating: 4/10
By: Maya Rodriguez


“Good service. Closer to the main attractions, popular restaurants, and hubs. But will give a lower rating because of one unpleasant experience that made us feel pretty unsafe. Took shower and went out for a while only to see the door not locked properly. Again, it seemed as if somebody went through our belongings. It’s 2020 and it’s COVID. Safety should be our main concern…Isn’t it? Won’t stay again!”

 

Your response,

Dear Maya,

We were happy to host you at our hotel recently! We appreciate you taking the time to reach out to us with your review regarding the recent stay. It’s good to know that our proximity to the major attractions and some of the most happening spots in the city suited you. Again, our staff would be equally pleased to learn of your high praise. However, we’re extremely gutted to learn that you encountered an unpleasant experience during your stay which made you feel unsafe! First of all, we request you to consider this an uncommon instance as we have never received this kind of complaint from any of our past guests. But we do understand your concern and feel that it makes perfect sense. We have CCTVs installed on-premises to ensure that the safety and well-being of our guests are not compromised in any way. We will definitely assign personnel to this particular case and ask them to scope out the security footage to conduct a thorough investigation on this matter. Again, regarding the door not being locked properly, we believe it might be an issue with the keys. We’ll also investigate this matter further to seek more clarification. In this connection, we’d like to mention that we are already in the process of enabling a feature where the door if left ajar, alerts the front-desk instantly to allow them to send the security up there. With this, we assure you that such an incident and lapse won’t be repeated in the future. We apologize profusely for this unexpected negative occurrence. We hope that none of your personal belongings or items are missing. We’re extremely sorry that you had to go through this! But we request you to give us another chance to rectify the wrongs by resolving this issue and to double our security measures to ensure that our guests have a safe and flawless experience next time! Please feel free to contact me directly and it will be my pleasure to assist you if you have any questions or concerns.

Best Regards,
Arnold World Hotel
Anne, Guest Relations Team

Common Hotel Reviews Regarding Safety: Neighborhood Or The Homeless Problem In The Area

common hotel reviews regarding homeless problem in the neighborhood

 

For instance,

Homeless Problem
Rating: 2/10
By: William Lopez


“We have had a number of concerns around physical safety in the surrounding area, especially during the pandemic. Staying with the homeless, panhandlers was not pleasant.”

 

Your response,

Dear Mr. Lopez,

Many, many thanks for your much-valued feedback. We’re extremely sorry to hear that your experience with us didn’t match your expectations. We are disappointed to learn that the neighborhood was not entirely to your liking. Surely, this is not the standard of service that we aim to provide to our guests. On behalf of our entire team, I would like to apologize for not exceeding your expectations. The safety and well-being of our guests rank topmost on our list of priorities and while we have CCTVs installed at vital points on our premises, we do realize that the safety of the physical surroundings is equally important and a significant area of concern for the guests. While some things like location or neighborhood are not directly under the control of a property, guest safety and security surely are! First of all, we’d like to inform you that just like many major cities, our beautiful city also has homlessness issues. Despite the area being an abode for the transients, we assure you that it is safe out there. But we definitely acknowledge your concern for safety and are doing every possible bit from our side by working closely with our partners and district authority to leverage resources for achieving long-term solutions. As you’re already aware, the entry into the property is always under strict vigilance and is monitored by our team 24/7. We realize there’s a lot to do here and there’s always room for improvement. We assure you that the property is safe and our team is always on their toes to assist the guests and suggest them shortcuts and directions which can help them navigate their way around with ease and bypass the vagrants all the way, ensuring a smooth experience. I hope that you will consider staying with us again so that we can have another chance to provide you with a superior experience.

Best Regards,
Arnold World Hotel
Anne, Guest Relations Team

Common Hotel Reviews Regarding Safety: Inadequate Cleanliness And Hygiene Along With The Negligence In Following Safety Protocols

common hotel reviews on improper cleanliness

 

For instance,

Unsafe stay
Rating: 1/10
By: Arabella


“Was enough to transmit the virus to us due to the inadequate cleanliness. The room was unclean. The bathroom felt dirty, Saw some guests moving about with no masks on several occasions. It wasn’t really safe given the current situation. Please go elsewhere!”

 

Your response,

Dear Arabella,

Greetings from Arnold World Hotel!
We appreciate you taking the time to give us the latest impression of the stay with us. It is surely a matter of concern for us to know that your stay did not match up to the quality that we strive to offer to our guests at all times. We apologize for the dissonance faced. We do hear your suggestions for improvement and I apologize if you did not feel that our housekeeping met your own standards of cleanliness, though our own standards are very high and include checking up to ensure that rooms are as clean as can be. But we assure you that the necessary corrective action would be taken in this regard for eliminating the glitch from cropping up again. Keeping in mind the adverse impact of the virus transmission and the current scenario, we have made adherence to the safety protocols mandatory for all our visitors and staff alike. We’re truly very disappointed to hear about the negligence and lapse in following the safety mandates and its reinforcement. The onus is on us and we have taken note of your valuable feedback which will definitely be passed on to our staff for making the necessary amends. We request you to give us an opportunity to rectify the wrongs and re-establish credibility with you. While we do regret the inconvenience caused to you and express our sincere apologies for the same, we assure you that we’ll look into it and do the needful. We hope to be able to match up to your expectations in the future!

Best Regards,
Arnold World Hotel
Anne, Guest Relations Team

2. Bad Service

Online Hotel Reviews Related To Bad Service

One thing from which COVID has not provided an exemption to the hoteliers is staying up to the mark when it comes to providing the ultimate customer satisfaction. The hotel guest satisfaction is based on customer service which is gauged at every touchpoint (booking & pre-arrival, on-arrival & check-in, mid-stay, check-out & post check-out).

69% of customers define “good” customer service as having their issue or problem addressed quickly and efficiently. 

Factors like guests coming across a hot-headed front-desk clerk, or requesting a towel which was never sent to the room, or a staff member roaming about without the mask, collectively constitute what is termed as the “poor service.” Similarly, the imperfect online experience at the time of booking or any other discrepancies is likely to result in negative reviews.

Let us elucidate each of these factors further with an appropriate example:

• Online Reviews Regarding Bad Service: Not Providing Useful COVID-19 Related Information At The Right Time

common hotel reviews regarding incomplete information on COVID measures

 

For instance,

Do not recommend this place
Rating: 1/10
By: Beatrice


No breakfast due to COVID-19. But didn’t inform us during booking nor did they update it on the website! Bad customer service.

 

Your response,

Hi Beatrice,

We thank you for your much-valued feedback. We apologize profusely for the inconvenience you faced due to the lack of information in advance about the non-availability of the breakfast service. While we thank you for your extreme cooperation in this regard, especially during the tempestuous times that we’re all witnessing, we agree that your concern makes total sense. The onus is on us and taking a cue from your valuable feedback, we will definitely make the necessary improvements in this regard, just so that our guests are already prepared beforehand about the fact that breakfast has been discontinued by us for the time being. We will make sure that our website reflects the latest guidelines and measures we’ve been taking in this regard. Thank you for bringing this issue to our attention. You’ve done us a great favor by bringing into light the areas where improvement is necessary for seamless guest experience and communication. I have personally shared your feedback with the teams responsible. Once again, we are sorry for all our shortcomings and we request you to give us another chance to resolve this and to provide you a superior experience in the future!

Best Regards,
Arnold World Hotel
Anne, Guest Relations Team

• Online Reviews Regarding Bad Service: Staff Not Following And Enforcing The Safety Protocols

not following safety protocols during pandemic in hotels

 

For instance,

Bad service. Not safe!
Rating: 3/10
By: Monica Bingle


“Poor management. Mask enforcement was totally out of question. The staff themselves were running around with no masks on. You can preach others only when you practise it! Did not feel safe staying here!”

 

Your response,

Hello Ms. Bingle,

At the outset, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for reviewing your recent stay at Arnold World Hotel. Your feedback is extremely valuable and we sincerely apologize for the dissonance faced. I really appreciate the valuable time taken by you to put down all the feedback. The global outbreak has put us all in a tough spot where the enforcement of safety protocols has almost become mandatory for the collective safety of all the visitors at our property. Any lapse in service, especially during such turbulent times, is something that we cannot afford as hospitality providers and calls for immediate action on our part to put things in place. We thank you for bringing this issue to our attention. Although we conduct regular training sessions for our staff in this regard, we’d further like to assure you that we have briefed all concerned departments to take necessary corrective action and to ensure that such guest dissonance does not reoccur in the future. We will definitely intimate our staff and do whatever it takes to ensure that the safety protocols are in place and are being strictly adhered to by the employees and visitors alike. I assure you the best of our services and look forward to the pleasure of welcoming you back for a flawless stay!

Best Regards,
Arnold World Hotel
Anne, Guest Relations Team

While negative reviews regarding safety and staff service are quite rampant, Corona or no Corona, they are not the be-all and end-all. A hotel can still score a lot of positive reviews, even amidst all the chaos.

Common Positive Reviews

These include a wide range of positive emotions on the part of the guests stemming from an ideal staycation during such tough times or having a gala time at a property that feels like a home away from home. Motivating reviews like these are vital for a hotel’s overall growth and reputation, and must be responded with the utmost care, to entice the guests to come back for another stellar experience!

 

For instance,

Great Stay
Rating: 9/10
By: Miranda


“We were greeted by the manager, Sam. He has a heart of gold and welcomes you the minute you check-in. The property and rooms are well maintained and extremely clean, especially during COVID. The housekeeping team is so sweet and always says hello. The location is in a quiet neighborhood and a five-minute walk to the beach. Our 2nd night we caught the most amazing sunset. One comment, the walls are thin and you can hear the other guests. Good news, it’s quiet after 11 PM. I will return again.”

 

Your response,

Hi Miranda,

We are always pleased to receive feedback from our guests in relation to their stay with us, and we are delighted with your rating and comments – thank you very much. We are glad that you loved our accommodation, and it feels great to know that our staff and service left a positive impression on you. We also hope your stay was comfortable, and you had easy access to everything you needed. We appreciate suggestions about how we can make things better for our guests in the future. Your comment about the sound from other rooms is duly noted. Your satisfaction is important to us and we will be using the feedback you gave us to implement improvements to ensure we offer a better experience to our guests in the future. We are looking forward to having you back the next time you are in the area. Stay safe!

Best Regards,
Arnold World Hotel
Anne, Guest Relations Team

Again, guests love it when hotels take care of each and every detail to make sure that the visitors are having a good time, especially when they’re away from home:

common hotel reviews ideal getaway

 

For instance,

Even in COVID times it was a getaway of a lifetime. Away from people and surrounded by food.
Rating: 8/10
By: Alice Brown


“I loved the view of the mountains and the convenience of so many things. It wasn’t that far from L.A. or any of the beaches if you have a car. It was obviously on the highway so you heard the sounds of the street. It was also next to a truck stop so horn honking was intense at 7 am.”

 

Your response,

Hello Ms. Brown,

Thank you for your stellar rating and review. We’re extremely delighted to learn that you had a great stay and loved the overall experience. Positive comments like these, even during such unprecedented times, are a great boost to our overall functioning and morale. We thank you for appreciating all our earnest efforts. This proverbial pat for us is a motivation enough to prod us to go forward and keep giving our best even in the face of adversity. However, we apologize for the only gripe you faced. Had you advised us about the noise issue at the time, we would have rectified the situation immediately or possibly offered you a room move. Please know that we are always there to assist you with your needs. We assure you the best of our services in the future!

Best Regards,
Arnold World Hotel
Anne, Guest Relations Team

Conclusion

While the review influx matters for a hotel, it is equally important to focus on the quality of reviews. Even if the world continues to face the COVID-19 turmoil, things must go on. Hence molding your SOPs as per the new requirements and expectations would be really helpful in generating a lot of positive reviews. And one more thing! Do not forget to respond to these reviews in a timely and professional manner.

• • •

Your Online Presence And Reviews Impact Your Bottom Line!

And especially more, during such unprecedented times!

We, at GuestTouch, understand hoteliers’ need to continue providing a seamless experience to their guests even amid such unprecedented times. We help hotels get reviews easily, manage reviews on the go, and respond to reviews professionally across search and OTAs to stand out and drive bookings consistently. With GuestTouch, stand out and instill confidence In travelers, researching their next stay, with hand-crafted, personalized responses to your online reviews.

Need more details? Schedule a free demo!

For more information, get in touch!

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