Hotel Transportation: Safety First for Hotel Guests

By Patrick Labriola President, Transportation Safety Exchange | July 01, 2012

As vacation season gets underway, your hotel guests will look to you to help them arrange day trips and motorcoach transportation. Or, perhaps you are partnering with a motorcoach carrier to transport your guests to a pre-determined destination. While your guests' focus will be on enjoying their holiday, your number one priority will be their safe arrival to wherever that holiday takes them.

The focus on motorcoach safety is rising exponentially, following recent high-profile accidents including a tragedy where 15 passengers were killed when a bus returning from an overnight trip to the Mohegan Sun Casino in Connecticut crashed, and the horrific fatal accident near Atlanta, Georgia involving the Bluffton University (Ohio) baseball team. In the Bluffton University case, the resulting lawsuit was not only against the motor carrier but also against the university, and cost more than $25 million. While the final cost to the Mohegan Sun Casino is not known yet, it is estimated the accident will cost the casino more than $100 million.

In another case, the owner of Brighton Gardens Nursing Home, Sunrise Senior Living Services, was named a Defendant in the lawsuit filed after a catastrophic bus explosion and subsequent fire killed 23 of their residents being evacuated from Hurricane Rita. Sunrise was named in conjunction with the broker it used to charter the bus, BusBank, and the bus owner and operator, Global Limo, Inc. While Sunrise reached a settlement with the victims and their families for an unspecified sum in 2007, the remaining defendants did not settle until 2009 for $80 million dollars.

Similar to the casino, the university, and the owner of the nursing home, hotels are not immune to the responsibility of safety. Hotel operators face significant liability risk and irreparable reputation damage if an injury-causing or fatal accident occurs on a motorcoach carrier transporting their hotel guests. Therefore, it is imperative that hotel operators identify and select carriers proven to be safer to transport their guests.

Hotel operators can take a more active role in the implementation of higher transportation safety standards for their guests in very easy and effective ways that will help to minimize potential accidents and limit their liability risk.

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Coming up in June 2019...

Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.