How To Communicate With Foreign-Speaking Guests Without Needing A Translator

by Ed Water CEO of Ask Blue

Room service profits have decreased by 25% since the recession. Hotels face steep competition for food and Global tourism has been steadily increasing year over year. More people than ever are exploring new cities and countries, which is great news for hoteliers. However, with this increase in international travel, hotels are presented with an increasing challenge: how does hotel staff communicate with guests that speak a different language?

Sorry, we don’t speak that language

Let’s say your hotel is in a major international hub, like Miami. One of the requisites of your hotel staff is that they speak both English and Spanish. A handful also speak Portuguese, as many of your guests are from Latin America. They’re able to communicate with the majority of the visitors that stay at your hotel. These guests rate your hotel very highly, since you’ve saved them the frustration and awkwardness of suffering through a painful conversation in broken English.

Then a small group of tourists from Japan arrives. Collectively, they know three words of English: hello, thanks, and bathroom. These guests have an urgent request: they need to find a doctor, stat. One of them has symptoms of food poisoning.

They’ve brought a small language handbook and point to the word for doctor. Your staff understands what they need, but they don’t know how to tell them how to get to the closest urgent care center.

One of your forward-thinking front desk agents quickly opens a translation app. Unfortunately, this app has no idea what to do with the street names you type in. The tourist group wants to ask a question, but the keyboard isn’t set up for the Japanese alphabet.

Now, your hotel guests are frustrated, your front desk agents feel incompetent and helpless, and the medical situation is worsening with each passing minute. Nobody wants to be in this situation, but something similar is happening all over the world every day.

Communicate with guests in real-time with Blue Fish

Effective communication is the heartbeat of any business or industry. With Blue Fish, the need to keep costly translators on staff is eliminated. Guests can ask Blue Fish questions in their own language and Blue Fish will respond in the same language.

If the guest wants to speak with a front desk agent directly, the guest can ask a question in their native language and Blue Fish will repeat the guest’s question in the agent’s language. The agent can respond, and Blue Fish will translate the agent’s words back into the guest’s language.

Currently, Blue speaks English, Spanish, French, Japanese, Korean, German, Italian and Portuguese, with plans for additional languages to be added to the system soon.

Now, your foreign language speaking guests will be as informed about all the amenities and services your hotel offers as other guests. They’ll be able to receive the same service that all your guests are entitled to, without the cost of hiring multiple employees that speak different languages or employing a costly translator.

No more missed opportunities for connection. No more failures to fulfifill foreign language speaking guests. Human to human communication is possible across many cultures because Blue Fish runs on the ever growing Ask Blue AI platform.

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