Are guests more willing to share personal info on hotel apps?

Thirty-four percent of guests are willing to disclose some level of personal information on a hotel app, according to a new study conducted by Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals. But drilling down through the responses, the positives increased based on whether a specific detail would impact a hotel stay. The factors that influenced a guest’s willingness to reveal information include benefit of disclosure, positive emotion and trust in app.

Additionally, the study showed that personal information respondents were willing/likely to disclose: room preference; room amenity preference (i.e. pillow type); gender; smoking preference; and dining preference but were unwilling to disclose credit card information, income, driver’s license/passport number, and geographic location.

Thirty-five percent of respondents travel with one mobile device and 32 percent travel with two mobile devices. Another 23 percent travel with three devices.

“Mobile communications is quickly growing as a popular means for hotels to interact with their guests, and this information helps these organizations plan mobile outreach tools,” said Frank Wolfe, CEO of HFTP Global.

The study was authored by Agnes DeFranco and Cristian Morosan, both of the C.N. Hilton College, University of Houston. The results shown are based on data from a survey distributed in April 2014 by DeFranco and Morosan. The online survey was conducted with hotel guests who had stayed in a hotel during the past 12 months prior; and a total of 317 questionnaires were collected.

The sample consisted of approximately 59 percent males, relatively mature, with age categories relatively evenly split throughout the sample. Most respondents had annual household incomes between $50,000 and $100,000 (45.4 percent). With regard to their stay, most respondents traveled exclusively for leisure (42.4 percent), stayed in midscale hotels (40.1 percent) for approximately two to three nights per stay (59.7 percent), in most cases having three to six hotel stays per year (44.3 percent).

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