Saturday, October 30, 2010

Tracking Bad Guests

When accommodation providers gather and discuss guests rating and reviewing their properties online with sites like, they often comment tongue-in-cheek that they would like to return the favour and rate their guests. Now they can!

We were interested to read about Guest Checker an innovative website that allows accommodation providers to post and share information about destructive, rude or disrespectful guests. Guest Checker's tag line sums up their service: "Check them out, before they check in!"

What type of "bad"guest behavior can accommodation providers report?
"There are a total of five categories of behavior which include at the lower level, blatant disregard for applicable terms and conditions such as smoking in non-smoking areas, using facilities such as swimming pools tennis courts out of hours etc., all the way to non-payment of tariff, assault, stealing etc. Persons in breach of the minor conditions referred to would not be reported unless they failed to heed several warnings regarding their activities."
Collecting and sharing data on guests has all sorts of privacy and legal connotations, however the American based website claims to have covered all bases. Along with alleged guest indiscretions, their database only contains a guest's name, address, and phone number as opposed to more personal information such as credit-card number, race or religion. The information is kept in a secure database that can only be viewed by accommodation members. We note that the site has the endorsement of the major American trade associations. 

Guests that check-in to member properties will need to sign a disclosure at registration that will allow information to be stored and shared amongst other Guest Checker members. If the accommodation provider posts adverse information about a guests behavior on the Guest Check website, they are obliged to inform the guest. The information can stay on the Guest Check database for up to four years and the guest has the ability to comment on and dispute any post. 

I would personally struggle to add terms and conditions that included the necessary Guest Checker disclosure onto my registration forms, however the concept would have a wide appeal amongst accommodation providers.

What do you think about the concept?

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