This seems not only poor service for a growing segment of vociferous demand – but it’s also very slack marketing.
And company travel programmes themselves still have a lot to learn, according to reports. A 2016 survey by MaidenVoyage.com stated nearly 80% of female business travellers believed their company’s travel programmes should take better notice of their gender needs; 70% said travel providers need to try harder to meet those needs. Not happy, boss!
Nor do Expedia nor Booking.com provide searchability or a dedicated section addressing the female traveller either.
And AirBnB merely tells would-be guests to look for hosts who already have a strong reputation. And to ask a lot of questions. Some hosts have verified identification and guests can ask for profile verification to be completed.
But there are at least a couple of websites we found that seek to cater for the woman looking for tailored treatment:
Maiden Voyage says it inspects and certifies hotels based on both security features and comfort factors identified as "must-haves" by our community. The Women in Business Research (from which the above research numbers were taken) revealed that in-room amenities and healthy dining options feature highly in the priorities and experiences of female business travellers.
One of the smaller boutique hotel chains does promote its female-attractive wares:
Stylish and cosmopolitan ambience, a place that inspires and stimulates – these are the Leonardo Royal Hotels. With the »women-friendly« rooms the Leonardo Royal Hotels present rooms which are oriented to meet the needs of the modern business woman. Exclusive room fittings with soft pillows, cosy blankets and finest upholstery as well as many other special amenities ensure an excellent service and a high level of comfort.
According to Maiden Voyage, female travellers are rating the following attributes highly:
- Good quality toiletries – no combined hair and body wash please!
- Hangers that come out of the closet so that they can steam an outfit in the bathroom
- For those that use them, good quality hairdryers so we don’t carry the additional weight of bringing our own
- Plug sockets close to the mirror so we don’t have to be a contortionist
- Healthy room service options and discreet dining areas so we don’t feel uncomfortable
But discretion, decent privacy in dining, and even maybe the gym, perhaps women-only floors are paying off for some hotels as the key ingredients.
Maybe International Women’s Day is a good time for some of those accommodation providers to think about lifting their games.
If nothing else it could even make good business sense.