Reception Etiquette: The First Consideration In Choosing Hotels

Yu BingChina Hospitality News reader Yu Bing is the translator and interpreter for the general manager of the Shenyang Sanyo Air Conditioner Company. She is responsible for booking hotels for the company's expatriate employees and for providing translation and interpretation services at the company's meetings and conferences.

What are the main criteria for your company when choosing hotels and MICE destinations?
As most of our clients are Japanese and the Japanese people pay more attention to etiquette, we attach great importance to the etiquette of hotel receptionists as well as to whether a hotel has receptionists who can speak Japanese.

What kinds of location and style makes a hotel worthy of recommendation?
Environment: the hotel should be close to the commercial streets and convenient for shopping. As people usually go on business trips alone, they may go to places near the hotel for entertainment or shopping at weekend.

Transport: close to the railway station or airport, this kind of hotel is not only convenient for customers but also helps them save time.

Location: hotels near the company or its branches, this can help to save time when going to and from work.

Which domestic hotels have you chosen for your events? Which hotels impressed you most and why?
Beijing: Royal King Hotel Beijing, Catic Hotel Beijing, Celebrity International Grand Hotel.

Shanghai: Rainbow Hotel Shanghai.

Shenyang: Shenyang New World Hotel, Gloria Plaza Hotel Shenyang, Sheraton Shenyang Lido Hotel.

Others: Hilton Hefei, White Swan Hotel Guangzhou, Hangzhou Lakeview Hotel, Nanjing Grand Hotel, Guangxi Jinhua Hotel.

Of these hotels, Shenyang New World Hotel, Sheraton Shenyang Lido Hotel and Hilton Hefei have left a deep impression on me. Take the Shenyang New World Hotel for example, the hotel’s sales and receptionists can all speak Japanese, so they communicate well with clients when helping them solve problems. What’s more, the salespeople from the hotel attach much importance to communicating with us. As well as regular visits, they will call us periodically to ask how we feel about their service. Whenever a client needs help, they will respond within 24 hours. In addition, their booking department also works well. We need to communicate a lot with the booking department when booking a room, so the efficiency of the booking department is critical for us. Every time we fax our room requirements they handle our request within a very short time and send us a fax with their feedback. Plus, they will call us and advise us with details confirming the room is booked, a car is arranged, and this is confirmed by fax. These considerate and thoughtful services are very important for us hotel bookers.

What kinds of regular events does your company hold each year? Where do you hold these events?
The regular events we run include new product releases and dealer appreciation meetings. We hold these events in various big cities across the country.

Through which channels do you select hotels or venues for your company events?
I rely on the Internet, recommendation by friends or magazines.

What problems have you encountered in using hotel products and services? What suggestions do you have for hotels?
As our clients usually stay for a long time — generally about 10-15 days — on their business trip it is inconvenient for us to arrange several cars to fetch them from the hotel every day. It will help save us both time and cost if the hotel can arrange this service for us by transporting the clients to our company every morning.

Some hotels change receptionists frequently. As the new staff are not familiar with the detailed arrangements between the hotel and companies, down payments or transportation fee are frequently included in our contract. Although these extra fees can be returned later, we need to mail the fees to our clients after they go back to their country, this is so troublesome.

I hope that the hotels can offer systematic training for their new employees before they start their work.

At present, companies in China are affected by the global economic depression, how does your company balance quality and price in choosing hotels in this situation? Which one do you prefer, continuing to use the professional services of international five-star hotels, which may involve a higher payment or change to local five-star hotels for cost considerations?
We choose hotels based on our clients. We will choose international five-star hotels for if we have important clients.

What do you think of China Hospitality News and its websites? Which columns are you interested in most and why?
I am mostly interested in Booker Opinion. The professional suggestions and comments there are a valuable reference for me.

Which type of holiday do you prefer? Do you have any favorite destinations to share with us?
I like self-drive holidays. I'd like to recommend Wuzhen.

What are your next travel plans?
I plan to travel in Guilin.