Working on a hotel-tech startup means that your DNA talks about dynamism, change, and innovation. Especially founders are always motivated to leave a positive impact on the hospitality sector. Back in February 2020, UpStay just implemented its platform for the hotel industry by developing tech to increase hotel revenues, then the COVID-19 pandemic hit and completely closed every hotel worldwide.
After the first difficult weeks, UpStay’s CEO, Tzafrir Blonder, thought about what he could do to help their clients during this difficult time. A pessimistic atmosphere of the unknown was all over the industry. That was when creativity sparked and the UpStay team needed to do something to help hoteliers struggling so much to keep their businesses afloat.
“What can we do for them?” was the main question in our heads. Our dev team started working and, in one week, they had the Hotel Reopen Map ready!
Hotel Reopen Map, was a free tool that allowed guests and travel industry experts to know what hotel businesses were opened in different locations. Hotels from around the world that had an opening date started to upload their information, and in just three weeks after it was launched, we had over 1000 hotels onboard! Travel magazines from all over the world recommended HRM to be used for hoteliers during the pandemic…That was such good news back in June 2020!
What Hotel Reopen Map was all about
The outbreak of the coronavirus paralyzed every industry worldwide, including hospitality. The moment the COVID-19 started slowing down was the right time for hotels to start the slow process of reopening. However, this created a problem for guests as they couldn’t find accurate information on which hotel businesses were available. In other words, due to the constant changing protocols and shifting measures in every country, guests were not able to track the status of hotels on their chosen destination.
On the other hand, travel industry professionals also faced the same problem as they couldn’t find accurate data on which locations they could recommend. Fortunately for all of them, UpStay solved the problem by creating this informative tool, Hotel Reopen Map. This helped everyone in the travel sector – both guests and sellers.
HRM was a website that allowed guests to easily list hotel businesses with their current open/closed status. If a hotel they wanted to visit was still closed, the guests could receive information on the potential reopening date.
HRM was like an extension of UpStay built on top of Google Maps as a data layer. If a hotel wanted to be listed, all it had to do was to fill in a brief online form. The platform was also fully automated and self-serve, so hotel businesses weren’t listed if they didn’t opt-in for it.
HRM gathered information on more than 3000 hotels
HRM gathered information from various countries across the planet, particularly from Israel, Australia, the US, and Europe, and had more data on more than 4000 hotels in its database. For UpStay’s team, the main goal of this platform was to make things easier for hospitality businesses to return to work after the pandemic.
Why did it shut off?
HRM was useful for hotel businesses, travel industry professionals, and guests alike. The Hotel Reopen Map was available for a few months during 2020. It was created as a temporary project to facilitate the ultimate tool for hotel businesses to notify guests of their availability during the coronavirus outbreak.
HRM and UpStay
UpStay was born just before the pandemic with the goal of helping hotels generate new revenue streams by allowing guests to buy premium services before their stay. Once the company was launched, UpStay grabbed immediately the attention of more than 250 hotel businesses by allowing guests to make an offer online for a hotel room upgrade before they arrive.
The data-driven platform automatically upgrades the best offers to match the unsold premium inventory of available hotels. UpStay easily disrupted the hospitality market as the most innovative solution with the main goal to help hotel businesses stay ahead of their competitors and afloat during difficult times by generating extra revenues automatically.
Hotels can easily integrate UpStay into their existing payment and booking systems without any extra effort needed. Such an upselling tech solution provides hotel businesses with the right tool to enhance the guest experience and achieve higher hotel revenue. Hotels can immediately increase ADR, as well as sell their inventory in the most effective way.
In the wake of the coronavirus, every business needs the most innovative technology and tools that they can use to maintain their operations and survive through the storm. When it comes to the hospitality industry, so much depends on the latest tech solutions. Fortunately, free tech tools allow hotels to run their business and attract guests to use their services. HRM started something great, and UpStay simply took over as one of the most effective upselling solutions in the hospitality industry.
Graduated from Standford University, Arielle has over 5 years of experience in the Hospitality industry. She holds an MBA in business administration from the IDC Herzliya, Israel. She currently works as Account Manager at UpStay, building and maintaining strong, long-lasting customer relationships. She is deeply passionate about helping hoteliers unlock significant new revenue streams from unsold premium inventory.