In-room tablets can be found in many hotels around London, for controlling both the room and the entertainment. We might soon see another gadget increasingly available to guests in the form of smartphones.
Two hotels have recently launched services offering free smartphones to those that come to stay. The Montcalm Marble Arch and Eccleston Square Hotel are both handing out mobile phones for anyone who finds themselves disconnected. Montcalm’s Handy service just about beat Eccleston Square to the punch, and will soon be rolled out to the brand’s other hotels.
The Montcalm’s service provides a phone free of charge so that guests can make international calls and use 3G to access the internet.
Handy also offers hundreds of points of interest, including travel tips, interactive maps, websites, and the ability to make reservations at restaurants. If you’re thinking that security might be a concern, don’t worry. Everything will be cleared from the phone when the guest checks out.
At Eccleston Square Hotel, their free smartphone service includes complimentary calls to the US and select European countries.
They are also using Handy to deliver their service. Handy began in hotels in Hong Kong and Singapore. They are growing their presence not just in London, but also in Paris, Milan, and Istanbul.
This type of service is particularly useful to anyone travelling from abroad.
When you’re used to being connected 24/7, it’s a disaster to find out you’re not covered once you leave your home country. Or worse, that it’s going to cost you an arm and a leg! Being able to borrow a smartphone means business travellers, or social media addicts, can make sure they’re always able to stay in touch with the people who matter most.
It seems very likely that further London hotels are going to begin offering Handy or a similar service. With two of them launching it this month alone, there’s bound to be more throughout the year.
Photo credits: NOGRAN s.r.o., The Montcalm Marble Arch, Eccleston Square Hotel.