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UK Hotels Still Think Poor WiFi Access is a Price Worth Paying

Monday, Jul 7th, 2014 (10:57 am) - Score 1,133

A new study commissioned by NETGEAR has surveyed 150 small and medium-sized hospitality and leisure venues across the UK, including 2,042 adults, to discover that 43% of hotels, B&Bs and theme parks etc. still think poor or non-existent WiFi Internet access is a price worth paying for a better experience in other areas. Most customers understandably disagreed.

Many hotels clearly believe it’s better to spend money in other areas than to deploy a good WiFi service, although 33% of “leisure travellers” said they wouldn’t return to a venue again if they found the wireless access to be inadequate and this reached a staggering 67% for business guests. Many guests saw the service is important for keeping up with both work and the social network activity of their friends or family.

However 29% of hospitality venues agreed that poor WiFi could result in guests complaining, while 23% feared it could result in a bad online review and 37% appreciated that there was a future potential for lost business. So clearly there is some appreciation of the concern.

Jonathan Hallatt, NetGear’s Regional UK Director, said:

Smaller hospitality and leisure venues must accept that for many people Wi-Fi is now a basic need. Wherever we are, whether it’s for work or pleasure, we immediately look for Wi-Fi access so we can stay in touch with our online world. People expect to be able to decide for themselves whether or not to connect, not to have that decision made for them.

Failure to provide a reliable wireless network means customers will spend less money while they are with you, shorten their visit and never return. The financial impact of this cannot be ignored. Strong and consistent Wi-Fi should be seen as a revenue generator, not a cost.”

We suspect that problems like this are likely to be especially tricky for hotels situated in remote rural locations, where good fixed line broadband and mobile connectivity is not available to feed the wifi service. By comparison guests staying in other areas may at least be able to fall back on their Mobile Broadband service, which is likely to become more common as coverage and performance improves.

Mark-Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on X (Twitter), Mastodon, Facebook and .
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