City Inn Westminster will be the first UK hotel to offer an automated check-in, using electronic check in booths. The revolutionary technology will run alongside the manned reception desk, allowing those who prefer a human interface to check in and out at their leisure. Those who would like to opt for the automated approach simply type their reservation number or credit card into the booth and check all the information relating to the stay, after which a key is issued by the machine. When they leave, the key is inserted and the customer is able to inspect their bill before making payment, either by credit card then and there or request an invoice by post. The machine is quick and simple to use, with customers taking on average under two minutes.
The vast range of services available on the internet is giving consumers a relationship with machines that is becoming ever more natural. From cash dispensers to vending machines, train and underground tickets to all types of vending machines and distributors, time saving machines are proving hugely successful and have swiftly become part of everyday life. It was reported by airlines recently that around 50% of their short distance check-ins were made via express terminals, and City Inn have learned from these industries who have successfully implemented similar technology.
City Inn CEO David Orr commented: “the check in booths are certainly a revolution. We are not talking about replacing customer service here - this is about choice. Different customers have different needs, and we always try and recognise that and respond to those needs.”
The booths have been hugely successful both in the USA and on the continent, and City Inn hope to emulate that success in the UK. City Inn have led the way in the business market by pioneering complimentary Wi-Fi and broadband internet access to all their customers. The check in booths further prove their commitment to bringing the latest technology to the business traveller, to make their journey as time efficient and hassle free as possible.