Saudi Arabia’s hospitality industry adapts to the rise of ‘millennial’ travellers

Published on : Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Hotel Show Saudi ArabiaMillennial travellers are forecast to become the dominant consumer group globally by 2020, yet the future appears closer for Saudi Arabia.

A new report by Euromonitor International prepared for The Hotel Show Saudi Arabia reveals that in 2016, 10.3 million people or 32% of the Kingdom’s population are classed as millennials or young adults (aged 18–36).  Meanwhile, 27 million domestic trips are forecast to be made by Saudi travellers this year.

In “Millennials – A new Breed of Travelers” Euromonitor defines the growing consumer segment as: “the first global generation”; “diverse”; “customise and adjust products and experiences to meet their unique needs”; “tech-dependent”; and “love to travel”.

Ahead of The Hotel Show Saudi Arabia 2016 this week, South Korean technology giant Samsung reports high growth in the number of hotels in the Kingdom adopting its ‘smart’ technologies catered to millennial travellers.

Ahmed Skaf, Country Solutions Manager at Samsung said: “In an increasingly connected world, hospitality providers are expected to deliver distinctive, high-tech experiences which exceed guest expectations. The rising demographic of millennial travelers, particularly in Saudi Arabia where there is a significantly young population, are also looking for a high level of personalisation and autonomy.”

“We have seen a significant increase in the last 3 years of the number of hotels adopting our Samsung Smart Hospitality Solutions in Saudi Arabia,” he continued. “Nearly all of the leading hotel chains in the Kingdom have now effectively devised online purchase and payment options, and the importance has shifted to tech elements such as instant check-in processes and digital signage solutions which Samsung provides.”

Samsung’s leading range of technology products designed for the hospitality industry includes processes for instant check-in, personalised services and smart signage or premium video displays for real-time information such as weather forecasts and exchange rates. “Features such as this can boost guest engagement, encouraging travellers to spend more time in hotel ‘social spaces’ such as lobbies,” added Skaf.

Samsung will launch a new hospitality management solution (HMS) to the Kingdom’s hospitality market at The Hotel Show Saudi Arabia 2016 – LYNK HMS Solutions – which enables in-room TVs to act as a central control for guests to personalise factors such as lighting and temperature, and for the hotel to send personalised notifications such as special offers.

In theme with the ‘millennial’ trend, at The Hotel Show Saudi Arabia’s 2nd annual Vision Conference topics to be covered include:“Visualize what you imagine (with Samsung Display Solutions)”; “Using social and digital media to attract domestic travellers”; “Boutique hotels – winning over tomorrow’s guests through customised experiences”; and “The future of hotel in-room entertainment”.

See the full range of ‘Samsung Smart Hospitality Solutions’ and attend the Vision Conference for free at The Hotel Show Saudi Arabia 2016 (17-19th May 2016, 4-10pm; Jeddah Centre for Forums and Events).

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