July 2021

Latest research taken by BWH Hotel Group GB, the organisation which represents almost 300 independent hotels in GB, including Best Western hotels, has shown that over 63% of guests would choose not to stay at a hotel that removed COVID-19 safety measures after Freedom Day on July 19th.

Despite Government rules changing, nearly 80% of guests* surveyed also indicated that they preferred hotels to continue with covid risk measures such as social distanced seating, mask wearing and contactless check in.

Rob Paterson, CEO at BWH Hotel Group GB said

“Hoteliers need to balance the concerns of guests versus commercial business decisions come Freedom Day. We have encouraged our hoteliers to read and digest all the new guidance from Government and UKHospitality ahead of the rules changing and make decisions that both protect their teams and guests, whilst ensuring they have an enjoyable stay this summer. Anecdotally, many of our hotels have told us they will be keeping most COVID-19 safety measures, to provide assurances to guests their breaks are as safe as possible. This approach is one we wholeheartedly support and recommend across our hotels.

Certain measures such as contactless check-in will remain in place across many of our hotels, as significant investments in technology and new procedures have been a positive move for them, regardless of COVID-19 safety, and guests have welcomed the change.

In such a tough time for all hospitality businesses, we need to capitalise on what will be a successful summer for many, whilst ensuring we do our collective duty to protect the British public.”

Interestingly, one area where hotel guests seem to welcome changes is room cleaning. Many hotels are not servicing bedrooms for short stays (<3 nights) to limit time spent in guest bedrooms, according to the survey, 42% of guests would want their rooms now cleaned daily, and 58% would remain happy for it to be done on departure.

Perhaps surprisingly, less than a third of guests would welcome the return of a buffet breakfast, with 69% of guests wishing it to remain served to them at socially distanced tables, despite the resulting often perceived reduced scale and choice on offer.

-       ENDS -


*Survey results:

(Online survey of 2,832 BW Rewards members in GB.  Survey undertaken over 15 & 16 July).

-       6 in 10 (63%) would not stay at a hotel which removed its COVID-19 risk measures after restrictions are dropped;

-       People think that the practices hotels adopted during the COVID-19 era are still important (% very & fairly important combined)

  • 78%, social distancing should be maintained
  • 78%, hotel staff should wear masks
  • 78%, hotel guests should wear masks in public spaces
  • 65%, keep screen on reception between staff and guests
  • 43%, automated or online check-in available (though only 14% think this is ‘very important’)

    -       82% intend to wear face masks in public after restrictions are dropped

    -       Probably the only question where there’s a bit of split in opinion relates to room cleaning: 42% want their room cleaned daily, 58% want it cleaned upon departure

    -       Finally, re: breakfast, only 31% want the return of buffet style breakfast.  The majority (69%) want to order at their table and have hotel staff bring their breakfast to them.

About BWH Group

BWH Group is a brilliantly different collection of independent hotels proudly giving a personal welcome to guests for over 70 years. With 15 hotel brands in its group portfolio, including Best Western GB, WorldHotels and soft brand BW Premier Collection, and almost 300 distinctive hotels in Great Britain alone, there is more to explore with our brand family.

BWH Group is a retained-profit membership organisation that helps hotels maintain their independence. Committed to representing the views of its independently owned member hotels, we tackle key industry issues on their behalf, including the effects of Government policies and legislation, industry changes and environmental impact on the heartbeat of the Great British hospitality industry. Never has is been more important for this voice than throughout this time of uncertainty and unprecedented hardship for independent hoteliers.

To find out more visit Best Western GB's Media Centre: