The latest trends in hotel guest satisfaction

JD Power released its 2022 North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study Wednesday, revealing a slight drop in guest satisfaction as demand and occupancy return to pre-pandemic levels.

The study found that while prices are up across all segments, travelers don’t necessarily feel like they’re getting their money’s worth. The 8-point (1,000-point scale) drop in overall satisfaction this year is the result of several factors, none of which are more important than hotel cost and fees.

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Satisfaction with B&Bs is also a contributing factor. JD Power points out that while hotels still get relatively high satisfaction scores for room cleanliness, scores for aspects such as decor and furnishings, room amenities, and bathroom quality are down by comparison. compared to 2021.

Guest satisfaction is also impacted by Wi-Fi costs. Fi was up four percentage points from the pre-pandemic year of 2019.

The study also revealed the trend towards fewer staff interactions amid labor shortages in the industry. According to JD Power, fewer guests are interacting with front desk staff and breakfast attendants this year compared to 2019. Still, they still give staff high marks for courtesy.

“The phenomenon we are seeing this year closely follows the increase in average daily room rates since the end of 2021, putting hotel owners in recovery mode,” said Andrea Stokes, head of hotel practices at JD Power, in a statement. “Over the field period of the study – June 2021 to May 2022 – the average daily rate for branded hotels increased by 34.8%. Many hotel owners and operators are using this post-pandemic increase travel to regain a stable financial footing, yet they have held back from investing in upgrades and improvements during the pandemic.Hotel operators must carefully balance a focus on recovery with heightened guest expectations that come with higher room rates.

For this year’s index, JD Power added the Upscale Extended Stay and Upper Midscale/Midscale Extended Stay segments, won by Hyatt House (857) and Sonesta Simply Suites (852), respectively. Meanwhile, The Ritz-Carlton (885) was voted Best Luxury Brand for the second consecutive year and Hard Rock Hotels (883) conquered the Upper Upscale segment for the second consecutive year.


Exterior of the Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner.
Exterior of the Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner. (photo via The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner)

Hilton Garden Inn (868) was named the top upscale brand while perennial upper-midscale champion Drury Hotels (877) maintained its place atop the throne for an incredible 17th consecutive year. Finally, Wingate by Wyndham (849) won the Midscale segment while WoodSpring Suites (798) received the award for Best Economy Brand for 2022.

The North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index, now in its 26th year, analyzes guest responses to more than 150 different questions about hotel stay experiences and measures the performance of 101 brands across eight customer segments. aforementioned market. The 2022 study is based on responses from 34,407 hotel guests for stays between May 2021 and May 2022.


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Kasandra J. Stone