As markets across the country begin to open back up to travelers, companies are rolling out technology to support travel in the COVID-19 era—from products that reduce contact between guests and staff to virus-killing technologies to reduce the spread of disease. Below are recently announced technologies designed to help keep guests and staff safe as hotels reopen.
Canary: Contactless Check-In
Canary Technologies has launched Contactless Check-In, a solution that hoteliers can implement immediately to welcome guests while adhering to social-distancing guidelines. Through Contactless Check-In, hotels provide their guests with a mobile link with instructions to check-in either prior to arrival or once they have reached the property. There is no app to download, and the guest can complete the entire process with a few taps, including identity verification and form of payment.
Canary can activate hotels on Contactless Check-In in minutes and has implemented the solution at more than 100 hotels within a week after launch. “Because Canary was already PCI-level 1 compliant and integrates with major PMS providers, we were able to use our infrastructure to build a secure and contactless solution for hotels,” SJ Sawhney, Canary co-founder, explained.
Canary Technologies’ roots are in compliance and workflow software. Canary’s Digital Authorizations solution is used by hotels to replace the paper credit card authorization forms with a secure and compliant solution.
Crystal Display Systems: Tablets With a Thermal Imaging Camera
Crystal Display Systems (CDS) has introduced its CheckVue temperature sensing tablet—an adaptation to CDS’ existing range of commercial tablet devices that has the addition of a thermal imaging camera system to monitor the temperature of staff and visitors. Coupled with an app and a locked-down operating system, the solution can be used at the entrance of a property as a zero contact, automatic temperature sensing system.
The CheckVue works as a self-verification tablet on entry to a premises. The system monitors the user’s temperature and informs the user of the result visually on the screen alongside an image of the user and a thermal map from the camera.
Healthe: Walkthrough UV Light Sanitizer
Healthe, a health and wellness company that uses light to sanitize air and surfaces, has developed a suite of solutions that continuously sanitize public environments using ultraviolet (UV) light that is safe for human exposure. Developed by former NASA scientist Fred Maxik, the Healthe Cleanse Portal is a free-standing walkthrough arch sanitizer, similar in size and shape to a metal detector, that inactivates bacteria and viruses on skin, clothing, and objects with a dosage requirement as low as 20 seconds. The Healthe Cleanse Portal can be positioned at critical entry points to reduce infection transmission rates.
By employing specially designed UV technology, the Cleanse sanitization process eliminates germs, bacteria, and viruses by modifying and destroying their genetic material (DNA/RNA), preventing further replication. In applications with direct human exposure, Healthe products deploy Far-UVC light (200-220nm) to penetrate and inactivate viruses and bacteria, without effect on human skin or eyes.
Lodging Access Systems: Antimicrobial Plastic Key Card
Lodging Access Systems—a company that provides hotels with key cards and credentials through its subsidiaries, RFID Hotel and LAS Hospitality Supply—has acquired the exclusive right and license to manufacture and distribute a patented and proprietary antimicrobial plastic key card to hotels and resorts in the United States. These key cards contain New Antimicrobial Layer (NAML) technology to inhibit the growth and transmission of germs, viruses, and pathogens. The concept of manufacturing plastic cards and badges with antimicrobial properties was first conceived in 2010.
Lodging Access Systems’ antimicrobial hotel key cards with NAML technology will be available through RFID Hotel, LAS Hospitality Supply, and select licensed distributors. The cards will be identifiable through the NAML logo and patent markings, and the use of additional proprietary methods to ensure authenticity. These cards are designed to integrate with both magnetic stripe and RFID lock systems, and will be fully compatible with all major lock manufacturer systems.
Pearl: Touchless F&B Ordering
A new technology called Pearl—from the founders of Eazy O—allows hotel guests to order from hotel restaurants anywhere on property and pay through their phones, reducing non-essential contact. Pearl syncs with InfoGenesis, Micros/Symphony2, and other point-of-sale systems.
Guests can peruse menus, embedded pictures, and multi-language support. The technology allows charges to either the guestroom or a credit card, and orders can be picked up by guests or delivered on a no-contact basis.
Resort Technologies: Social Distancing for Pools and Beaches
Resort Technologies, LLC, recently announced the iOS initial release of Solay. The mobile app is a free inventory management system and seating reservation tool that hotel and resort guests can use to reserve seats placed six feet apart at pools and beaches. Solay uses customized property information and seating maps, organizing the logistics of social distancing among registered guests without requiring integrations or property technology solutions.
Solay is now available for free download in the iOS App Store. Android is planned for release in Q1 of 2021, along with the development of additional features.
TipYo: Touchless Tipping
TipYo announced that its secure mobile tipping solution is now available at hotels throughout the country. The app-based system integrates with hotels’ payroll systems, directing guests’ tips to specific employees while meeting IRS and regulatory requirements. Hotel guests can download the app to share a gratuity with valet, concierge, and housekeeping teams.
In December, Hotel Murano in Tacoma became the first U.S. hotel to offer guests a mobile tipping option via TipYo.