Guest Journey

Map the guest journey

A customer or guest journey map is a visual tool used to illustrate the steps and experiences a customer goes through when interacting with a business, in this case a hotel. It extends from initial awareness of the hotel to aftercare after the stay. We break down the journey into main steps and describe important interaction points and feelings.

In this initial stage, the brand focuses on creating awareness and attracting potential customers. The goal is to capture the attention of individuals who share the brand's values and ambitions. Through carefully designed marketing campaigns, you showcase your superior craftsmanship (eg food, beverage, service), design and unmatched quality.

This step lays the foundation for a lasting relationship between the brand and the customer. The hotel can take advantage of similar strategies by creating engaging and visually appealing content on social media, offering incentives for current guests to share their experiences online, and partnering with influencers to increase visibility. These efforts help build a strong initial connection that can develop into long-term customer relationships.

  • Create engaging and visually appealing content on social media.
  • Offer incentives for current guests to share their experiences online.
  • Collaboration with influencers to increase visibility.

1. Offer a smooth and secure online booking process

  • User interface: The website should be intuitive and easy to navigate, with clear instructions and minimal design that focuses on user experience. Mobile customization is crucial, as many customers book via their smartphones.
  • Security: Implement advanced security measures, such as SSL certificates to encrypt data and PCI DSS standards to secure card payments. It is important to clearly demonstrate that the platform is secure in order to build trust among users.
  • Personalization: Use data and cookies to offer personalized recommendations based on previous searches or bookings. This may include suggesting room types, special offers or packages that match the customer's previous preferences.

2. Provide multiple payment options, including mobile payment

  • Payment methods: In addition to traditional credit and debit cards, the hotel should offer alternative payment methods such as Klarna, Apple Pay, Google Wallet and perhaps also the possibility of invoice payment for business customers.
  • Currency options: For hotels with international customers, the ability to display prices and make payments in different currencies can be an advantage, making the process more user-friendly for guests from different countries.
  • Flexibility: Provide refundable and non-refundable booking options with clear terms to meet different needs and risk preferences of customers.

3. Send instant booking confirmation via e-mail and SMS

  • Instant Confirmation: Ensure that the system automatically sends a confirmation as soon as the booking is completed. This should contain all relevant information about the stay, including date, room type, price, and payment status.
  • The following communication: After the initial confirmation, further emails or text messages may be sent to provide information on hotel facilities, restaurant specials, upgrade opportunities and tips on local events.
  • Customer Support: Include information on how the customer can contact the hotel in case of any questions or need to change the booking. A responsive customer support system (via phone, email or chat) is essential to handle inquiries and changes effectively.

Before the stay is crucial to create a positive first impression and streamline the process so that the guest's arrival is as smooth as possible. Here is a detailed overview of the proposed activities:

1. Send a welcome email with important information and personal recommendations

  • Contents of the welcome email: The email should include basic information such as booking details (dates, room type, check-in times), directions to the hotel, weather forecasts for the upcoming period, as well as contact details if questions or additional needs arise.
  • Personal recommendations: Based on the guest's past behavior or stated preferences, include suggestions for activities, restaurant visits, and local attractions that may interest them. This shows a high degree of adaptation and care on the part of the hotel.
  • User-friendly design: Make sure the email is visually appealing and easy to navigate, with clear sections and action buttons for easy access to more information or to complete online check-in.

2. Offer the option to check in online to save time

  • Online check-in process: Give guests the option to check in online through the hotel website or through a mobile app. This may include room selection, indication of estimated arrival time and the possibility to make special requests prior to arrival.
  • Advantages of online check-in: By allowing online check-in, guests can avoid queues and a more time-consuming process upon arrival, giving them more time to enjoy their stay. It also helps the staff to better plan and manage arrivals.

3. Send reminders and offers about upgrades or special packages

  • Reminders: Send a reminder a few days before arrival to confirm the details of the reservation and offer additional information or services that may be of interest.
  • Upgrades and special packages: Include offers on upgrades to better rooms or special packages such as spa treatments, dining reservations and tours. This can both increase guest expectations and generate additional revenue for the hotel.
  • Custom Offers: Use data collected from the guest's previous visits or preferences specified at the time of booking to tailor offers that are relevant and appealing.

By carefully managing pre-stay activities, the hotel can not only streamline processes but also improve customer satisfaction and strengthen its brand as a hospitable and caring destination.

Is critical to ensuring that the guest's first physical interaction with the hotel is positive and effective. Here follows a detailed review of the activities that can be optimized during this stage:

1. Meet the guest with a warm welcome and a quick check-in process

  • Welcoming: Ensure that the front desk and other staff who meet guests are friendly and welcoming. A smile and a warm greeting can make a big difference to the guest's first impression.
  • Efficiency: Streamline the check-in process to minimize wait times. This may involve pre-prepared check-in packages that already contain key cards and all necessary information.
  • Information at check-in: Provide guests with concise but complete information about their rooms, hotel facilities and any events that may be of interest. An information sheet or quick guide can be helpful.

2. Make sure staff are available to answer questions and help with luggage

  • Available staff: Have enough staff at the reception and in the entrance to be able to quickly assist guests if needed. This can include anything from answering questions to helping with check-in and check-out.
  • Baggage handling: Offer assistance with luggage from arrival to room. This is especially appreciated by guests who have traveled far or have a lot to carry.
  • Training: The staff should be well trained in customer service and have good knowledge of the hotel and its surroundings to be able to give correct and helpful answers.

By carefully managing these activities upon arrival and check-in, the hotel can ensure a smooth and pleasant start to the guest's stay, setting the tone for the rest of their experience at the hotel.

1. Offer high-class room service and prompt response to requests

  • Room service: Ensure that the room service menu is comprehensive and offers a wide range of quality food and beverage options, including options for special dietary needs. The menu should be available digitally through the hotel's app or TV system as well as in printed format.
  • Speed and efficiency: Room service should be known for its speed and efficiency. Staff should be trained to handle orders quickly and accurately, with clear communication about delivery times.
  • Responsive service: Implement an easy way for guests to provide instant feedback or make requests via an app, phone or through an in-room digital assistant.

2. Organize events and activities for guests to participate in

  • Event Planning: Offer a varied schedule of events and activities that can attract different types of guests, from family-friendly activities to evening entertainment such as live music or theme nights.
  • Communication: Ensure that information about events and activities is clearly communicated to all guests at check-in and through updates in the hotel app or on information displays around the property.
  • Adaptability: Offer opportunities for guests to suggest or request specific activities, which can help the hotel customize events and further enhance guest experiences.

3. Ensure all facilities are in top condition and available to guests

  • Maintenance and cleanliness: Regular maintenance and strict cleanliness protocols should be in place to ensure that all facilities, such as pool areas, spas, gyms and common areas, are always in top condition.
  • Availability: Ensure that all facilities are easily accessible for all guests, including those with special needs. Accessible routes, entrances and equipment should be checked regularly.
  • Guest Support: Staff should be available at the main facilities to help with equipment, answer questions, and deal with any problems that arise.

Mid stay check to ensure guest satisfaction

  • Proactive follow-up: During the guest's stay, conduct a "Mid Stay Check" where the hotel actively asks the guest if everything is to their satisfaction or if there is anything that can be improved. This can be done in person, by phone, or digitally through the hotel's app.
  • Immediate action: If the guest expresses any concerns or needs for improvement, the staff should immediately work to address them. This shows a genuine commitment to the guest's experience and can prevent any negative reviews after the stay.

By including a Mid Stay Check, the hotel increases its capacity to quickly react to and solve any problems

Check-out and departure

  • Activities:
    • Provide a quick and efficient check-out process, possibly through self-service.
    • Provide the opportunity to provide feedback about the stay at check-out.
    • Upsell products from, for example, your shop
    • Upsell upcoming packages and events 

After the stay

  • Activities:
    • Send a thank you email and ask for a review of the stay.
    • Offer special offers or discounts on future stays.
    • Stay connected through regular newsletters and updates.

In a Customer Journey Map, “Pains” and “Gains” are central components that help identify and understand the most important parts of the customer experience. These concepts play a major role in shaping how a company can improve its services and offerings to better meet customer needs. Here is a detailed explanation of the two terms:


“Pains” refers to the problems, obstacles or frustrations that customers encounter during their interaction with a company or its products/services. These are the negative aspects of the customer experience that can hinder customer satisfaction and loyalty. Identifying pain points is critical to being able to:

  • Understand what problems customers actually experience.
  • Analyze the causes of these problems.
  • Develop solutions to address and minimize these pain points.

Examples of pain points for a hotel can be a complicated booking process, long waiting time at check-in, inadequate room service, or insufficient cleaning.


"Gains" describe the benefits or positive results that customers hope for or experience through the interaction with the company. These are the positive aspects that can increase customer satisfaction, loyalty and the overall value that the customer receives from the product or service. Mapping benefits provides insights into:

  • What customers value most in their interactions with the company.
  • Which factors contribute most to a positive customer experience.
  • Opportunities to reinforce these positive experiences and create additional value.

For a hotel, gains can include easy and fast booking process, personalized rooms, exceptional customer service, and exclusive offers or experiences.

Effectively identifying and managing both pain points and benefits within a Customer Journey Map helps a company improve its customer service, optimize the customer experience and strengthen its position in the market

Creating a Customer Journey Map for a hotel means mapping the customer's experience in detail from first contact to after the end of the stay. Here is a short guide on how a hotel can implement this:

1. Define the target group

Start by defining who the map is intended for. This may involve creating different personas that represent different types of typical guests, such as business travelers, families, couples on romantic vacations, etc.

2. Identify customer touch points

Map all points where the customer interacts with the hotel, from the initial web search, booking, check-in, use of hotel facilities, to check-out and subsequent interactions such as feedback collection or marketing campaigns.

3. Collect data

Gather data through customer interviews, feedback, reviews, and observations to understand customer behaviors, emotions, and experiences at every touchpoint.

4. Analyze pain points and benefits

Identify the major "Pains" (pain points) and "Gains" (benefits) in the customer's journey. This includes looking at which parts of the journey are most frustrating or most satisfying.

5. Visualize the journey

Create a visual representation of the journey with all touch points, pain points and benefits. Use a timeline or flow chart to illustrate the different stages and their interrelationships.

6. Identify areas for improvement

Use the insights from the map to identify where and how processes and service can be improved. Focus on reducing pain points and amplifying positive experiences.

7. Implement changes

Based on the identified areas of improvement, plan and implement changes. This may mean improving the reservation system, speeding up the check-in process, raising the quality of customer service, or introducing new services and facilities.

8. Follow-up and iteration

After implementation, continue to collect feedback and update the map regularly. Customer Journey Mapping is an iterative process that requires continuous adjustment and improvement.

By following these steps, a hotel can create an effective Customer Journey Map that not only improves the customer experience, but also increases customer satisfaction and loyalty.