Singapore – Popular hotel and integrated resorts Marina Bay Sands has rolled out new features in its mobile app in order to improve guest experience. Some of the features include allowing mobile check-ins and the launch of digital keycards for hotel guests.

These new services kick off a significant programme under the integrated resort’s customer service roadmap to elevate the end-to-end digital experience across all touchpoints of the guest journey. These new functionalities and many more features are now available on Marina Bay Sands’ mobile application for both Android and Apple users.

Upon making a reservation with the hotel, guests can use the Marina Bay Sands mobile app to log in with a membership ID and carry out steps to complete the check-in process. First users must scan a government-issued identity document, then take a selfie photo to verify identity via facial recognition technology, followed by confirming personal details, and lastly activate digital keys for room and lift access upon arrival at the hotel.

In addition to mobile check-in and digital key access, guests can request in-room amenities and order in-room dining through the app. At the end of their stay, guests can also verify their room bill and check out, without having to queue at the lobby or drop off physical keycards. 

For Paul Town, chief operating officer at Marina Bay Sands, the aim of the new mobile app features is to not only transform the conventional check-in experience, but to also allow guests to truly maximise their time and start discovering the property from the moment they arrive. He also adds that they have big plans for their digital offerings and are investing heavily to enhance the overall customer journey across even more touchpoints.

“Marina Bay Sands has always embraced technology in our constant pursuit to enhance service standards and convenience for our guests. Regarded as a breakthrough for a standalone hotel of our scale in Singapore, our new mobile offerings will enable an effortless end-to-end guest experience to create new value for our customers. These innovations will also enable our team members to take on higher-value tasks such as rendering more personal service to our guests,” Town said.

Singapore – Vouch, a Singapore-based travel tech startup that offers its guest experience platform to hotels in various markets, has successfully closed its US$1.1m seed funding, to which they aim to target to open European operations, starting off with the setup of their operations in London, United Kingdom.

This marks the company’s third in-country branch along with its presence in Indonesia and South Korea, to which they will be looking to build on its new and existing partnerships with hotel chains in these markets for expansion.

Vouch provides AI-powered technology to the hospitality and travel segment, including attractions and malls, to enhance productivity, boost revenue and elevate the overall guest experience. The company firmly believes that with technology as an enabler, properties now have the freedom and the ability to focus on things that truly matter.

Said funding was led by Forge Ventures, and will be used for expansion and product development for a new category of technology for hotels: the guest experience platform.

The company’s guest experience platform allows guests to check-in, make room requests, order food and beverage and get instant answers to commonly asked questions, just by scanning a QR code on their mobile phones.

Furthermore, Vouch has seen wide adoption of its platform in Asia to improve productivity through the streamlining of hotel operations and providing round the clock services for hotel guests.

According to Joseph Ling, founder and CEO at Vouch, the company has rolled out its services and partnered with noteworthy hospitality brands in Asia and is now looking to expand globally. For instance, they have covered 25% of all rooms in Singapore under international groups such as Frasers Hospitality, Hyatt Hotels, Pan Pacific Hotels Group and the InterContinental Hotels Group.

“There is a genuine need for a solution that helps hotels improve manpower efficiency and the pandemic has accelerated this need. Our plan this year is to expand aggressively into new markets that will benefit most from a productivity platform like ours, namely Hong Kong, Macau, South Korea and the United Kingdom,” Ling stated.

While travel and tourism have remained low across the world due to COVID-19, Vouch aims to help businesses and consumers in these sectors cope better in a pandemic.

“By incorporating Vouch into their operations, businesses can better plan for manpower requirements and avoid greater uncertainty associated with fluctuating pandemic intensity and accompanying social distancing requirements,” the company said in a press statement.