Cleanliness has always been a high priority at hotels -- and during the pandemic, it has become an even bigger issue.
The Professional unit of Procter & Gamble in May surveyed 850 frequent business and leisure travelers and 974 diners. Those surveys said 70% of travelers and 58% of diners would choose to do business with a hotel or restaurant if they knew it was using cleaning products “they personally knew and trusted.”
Also, 55% of survey respondents would pay more for a room if they knew a hotel was being kept spic and span with the help of trusted brands like, well, Spic and Span, a P&G staple. A third of restaurant patrons say they’d pay more if brands they knew were used to help clean up the place.
Of course P&G has skin in this game. It just launched CleanPLUS Experience, which provides hotels and restaurants with digital and printed materials to show off to guests, highlighting the professional branded version of products like Dawn, Safeguard — and the new Microban 24 disinfectant, introduced to consumers just as the COVID-19 crisis deepened, which claims to keep killing bacteria for a full day, “even when the surface is touched or contacted multiple times.”
“Visual communication will be key for businesses to help reassure guests that it is safe to return,” a P&G Professional spokeswoman said.
Other brands are also hitting the issue head-on. The Wyndham hotel chain is touting its expanded relationship with hygiene and healthcare company Ecolab.
Now “we will require use of [Ecolab’s] EPA-approved disinfectants in guest rooms and public spaces at all U.S. and Canada hotels,” the hotelier’s Frequently Asked Questions website page now explains.
In April, Hilton Hotels initiated the Hilton CleanStay. It teamed with Reckitt Benckiser, the maker of Lysol and Dettol antibacterial soap, and the Mayo Clinic’s Infection Prevention and Control team, to improve the chain’s disinfecting strategies.
“The initiative will create a focus on cleanliness that will be visible to guests throughout their entire stay – in their guest rooms, restaurants, fitness rooms and in other public spaces,” Hilton said in its announcement.
Hotel guests’ new stronger feelings about cleanliness should become obvious during the upcoming July 4 weekend, when some consumers will decide to take trips for the first time in months.
The AAA didn’t even make a forecast for Memorial Day or Independence Day travel, but it has made predictions for the entire summer instead. It estimates Americans will take 683 million car trips between now and Sept. 1, down 3.3% from last year. But those car trips will make up the bulk — 97% -- of all summer travel plans, though most of those trips will be shorter, and more spur of the moment, based on the prevailing COVID-19 situation, says the AAA. It expects about a 74% decline in air travel and a nearly 15% decline in overall travel.