Why travellers research a hotel's Wi-Fi speed before they book
Today’s travellers demand fast and reliable Wi-Fi in their hotels or they’ll book somewhere else. To meet these guest expectations, you need fibre to the premises (FTTP) and a top-grade local wireless access network, or WAN.
With the right infrastructure, equipment, and network design, you can deliver high-speed Wi-Fi that will keep all of your guests happy.
Travellers expect to access and use the Internet in their hotel room the same way they do at home or at the office. Tourists want to watch YouTube and Netflix, and play online games. Business travellers need to stay in touch with the home via email and video conferencing.
To see how your Wi-Fi stacks up today, check out hotel Wi-Fi speed service. Keep in mind that your prospective guests are using the same tool!
How much bandwidth does a hotel need?
To calculate how much bandwidth a hotel needs, consider the services guests are likely to use. Industry experts suggest 2 Mbps for video services and an additional 2 Mbps for all other online activities, totalling 4 Mbps of download capacity per room. Upload speeds based on Alberta Hotel data represent 4 Mbps per room. For a hotel of 100 rooms, 400 Mbps download and 400 Mbps upload is required to offer a best in class, reliable online customer experience.
Of course, it’s unlikely that your guests will use all that bandwidth at the same time. But with infrastructure like fibre that can handle that level of traffic, you're safeguarded against the possibility. Also, the infrastructure needs to support hotel business operations like email, online booking systems, and cloud services. These all require bandwidth as well.
If you're looking for advice on what makes the most sense for your business, click here. Axia's team of experts is happy to help you levergae connectivity for an improved bottom line.
Equipment and network design
Once you have enough bandwidth coming into your hotel, address your own network’s needs. Check your equipment. Use enterprise-grade routers and switches available from companies like Cisco and Ruckus, and fibre delivery to each access point (AP).
A good network plan includes well-placed access points and appropriate channel and band settings.
Many hotels just install omnidirectional antennae in central floor locations, which is not always the best plan. Consider how many walls and floors your signal needs to pass through. You may be better off with less expensive directional antennae placed in strategic locations throughout the hotel.
Get rid of interference
The right channel distribution and network band setup will greatly reduce interference, a huge contributor to Wi-Fi latency.
Use a channel distribution of 1, 6 and 11 to avoid the co-channel interference caused by using the same channel as well as the sequential channel interference caused by your guests using adjacent channels.
As for your network band, use only the 5Ghz spectrum. The 2.4 GHz band is a crowded space used by Bluetooth devices, wearables, and equipment such as microwaves and cordless phones. Using a 5 GHz band means guests’ tablets, smartphones and laptops don't share their signal with devices that don't require an Internet connection.
If you use a managed service for your customer Wi-Fi, do your research. Ask them about the equipment and design principles they use. Check out the reviews for other hotels that use their service.
And remember, the best designed WAN with the highest quality equipment is only as good as the network infrastructure that supports it. Deliver Wi-Fi to your guests at blazing speeds with a fast reliable fibre optic network.