Touted as showcasing the hotel stay of the future, HotelTonight claims it is the first online travel agency to bring mobile check-in and keyless entry to its users.
The express check-in feature lets HotelTonight guests bypass the cumbersome check-in process at the hotel reception — they can simply complete the process with two taps on the app, and they will be notified when the room is ready, after which they can go to the front desk to pick up their keys. This feature is currently in pilot with select hotels on the HotelTonight iOS app, and will be rolling out to more hotels and the Android platform in the “coming weeks.”
The company also introduced a keyless entry feature that allows HotelTonight guests to unlock their hotel rooms with the app on Android devices using NFC capabilities and an API provided by Brivo Labs. All users need to do is open the app, hold the mobile device up to the lock, and the door will automatically unlock in a few seconds. This will be landing some time in the near future, though there isn’t a specific timeline yet as HotelTonight is still in talks with “several global hotel chains.”
Other features introduced by HotelTonight for the latest version of its Android app include better discovery for customers with the use of Google’s Places Autocomplete API, which can help them find hotels near certain cities or points of interest. HotelTonight customers can now also explore their hotel’s surroundings with 360-degree images provided by Google Street View.
The updated app features integration with Google Now too, which means users can quickly access directions, call the hotel, view their email receipt and, in one tap, get to their current booking in the HotelTonight app. Booking and payment are also now easier on the Android app with the integration of Google sign-in and Google Wallet Instant Buy.
Back in April, we reported that HotelTonight now anticipates last-minute price for the week ahead, based on key events happening in the locale that could affect room-rates — and this feature has also arrived on the Android app now.
HotelTonight was initially focused on North America, but it is now available in 300 markets around the world, with Europe becoming a particular focus over the past couple of years.
Headline image via Bill Pugliano/Getty Images
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