Wi-Fi for guests in a hotel is no longer a luxury, but a necessity as competition in the hotel sector increases.

When choosing holiday accommodation, guests consider free and high quality Wi-Fi an essential. In many hotels, charges for internet access still exist but most major brands have now done away with them.

International hotel Wi-Fi testing revealed that less than half of Australian hotels provide free access in all areas, compared to three-quarters for Singapore, Indonesia and the Philippines.

Business travellers need Wi-Fi on the go, while holidaymakers will likely use Wi-Fi to share photos and videos, and to navigate around.

Therefore, hotel reputations are at the bane of their Wi-Fi performance as failing to maintain connectivity can hinder a customer’s experience.

For that reason, it is important for hoteliers to consider the types of applications their guests require. For example, do guests engage in streaming services like Netflix and Spotify or are they more business orientated and require access to Outlook, Whatsapp and Skype?

Instead of installing numerous wireless access points throughout the hotel, getting the hotel network design right will minimise costs of cabling and installation. In addition, hotels must ensure they have sufficient bandwidth during times of business conferences and peak periods like New Year.

Expanding Wi-Fi technology now will help prepare hotels for the future and compete with increasingly popular services such as Airbnb.