Why need to unlock the hotel room with a phone?
Unlocking hotel rooms with a phone has become widely used in modern hotels. Hotel mobile check-in brings excellent convenience to hotel customers and brings more economic benefits.
Here are some of the top benefits of being able to unlock a hotel room with a phone:
For hotel customers
Mobile keys are a fast, innovative way to access your room after checking in. Instead of waiting in line or visiting the front desk to pick up a physical key, you can use an app on your phone to unlock the hotel room door locks.
You can share mobile keys with other guests if you want them to have access without checking in at the front desk—or if they’ve lost their physical key and need a way back into their room.
Unlocking a hotel room with your phone offers greater security. You can decide who is allowed to enter and when making it easier to limit access to only the people you want.
You can even use this technology to prevent unauthorized personnel from entering while you’re away. This helps reduce the risk of theft or vandalism and provides peace of mind knowing that only authorized individuals will have access to your room.
Contactless check-in and check-out.
Unlock hotel rooms with phones can quickly achieve contactless check-in and check-out.
You can bypass the front desk and go straight to your room. Your phone will be your key—a digital key card that you can use to unlock every door at your hotel.
You can check out without ever seeing an employee again with this technology. This means less time spent waiting in public areas and more control over your movements during a stay; both features are essential during uncertain times.
Never worry about losing your room key.
Hotel guests who use their phones to unlock the hotel room don’t have to worry about leaving their room keys behind or having them stolen. This can help hotels save money on replacing lost or stolen keys.
Improve hotel experience
Hotel guests who don’t have to get a new card every time they lose theirs will be happier with the experience and less likely to request a replacement card. Keyless entry also helps improve customer satisfaction because guests don’t need to contact front-desk staff whenever they want into their rooms.
For hotel operators
No need for people to remember their keycards anymore.
People do not need to worry about forgetting their physical keycards or carrying them everywhere because they are now unlocking hotel rooms with phones! It’s nice not having one more thing you might lose in your purse or wallet.
Save time when checking into and out of hotels.
This will save everyone unnecessary wait times while trying to check-in/out and eliminate unnecessary hassle during those busy travel periods.
Such as the summer months when there’s usually an influx of visitors coming through anticipated these events happening nearby.
Eliminate the need to queue at the front desk.
Reduce the number of physical contacts. This reduces the risk of infection. Reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
It’s easy to lose your key cards, leading to more charges for you and extra work for hotel staff. Unlocking your room with a phone is more convenient than carrying a key card.
Reduce the use of plastic in hotels.
Because customers can check-in and out without going to a physical desk, reducing the need for plastic key cards. It also helps reduce your hotel’s environmental footprint by reducing the carbon emissions from manufacturing plastic key cards.
Share your room key with friends.
Unlocking a hotel room with a phone will make it easy for them to enter your room without depending on anyone to open doors. This can be done by sending an authorization link from your mobile phone, which they have access to within 30 seconds.
The system automatically revokes the authorization link after 30 seconds if it is not used. You don’t have to worry about anyone opening your hotel door without key cards or permission.
Can I use my phone to open a hotel room?
Yes, you can open your hotel room with the help of a smartphone app. The only requirement is that the hotel you’re staying in has to support this feature to work.
But not all hotels offer this feature. But more and more hotels are entering into partnerships with companies that provide this service daily.
Some require you to download their mobile app, while others have apps you can use. In some cases, they might also offer both options.
Can I use my phone as a hotel key?
The short answer is yes. You can now unlock your hotel room with your phone at select hotels that support mobile keys. However, there are a few things that need to confirm first:
- The hotel you booked has to support unlocking the hotel room with your phone; you can use your phone as a hotel key.
- The hotel lock system must support Bluetooth or NFC unlocking. Most major brands of electronic door locks support both of these standards, and many hotels are installing modern locks that allow you to use your phone as a key. Check with the hotel before booking to make sure they have compatible locks.
- Your phone must also be able to connect via Bluetooth or NFC (most phones launched in the last two years support these standards).
How does unlocking a hotel room with a phone work?
As you might expect, hotel digital key technology works similarly to Apple’s Wallet app. Instead of using a physical room key, you can use your phone to open a hotel room with a digital key.
Hotel digital keys are based on Bluetooth or NFC technology. The hotel doesn’t have to install anything new or modify existing door locks. The properties already have the required infrastructure—they need to add the software that allows digital keys to be used with their existing infrastructure.
This technology is accessible for hotels to install and implement. Still, it also simplifies guests’ check-in process and eliminates the hassle of carrying a room key during their stay.
They can head straight from the airport (or wherever) directly to their hotel room when they arrive at the property without waiting in line for check-in or stopping by a reception on their way up to pick up a physical room key.
What type of mobile check-in can unlock a hotel room with a phone?
You use your phone to unlock your hotel room in many different ways. Depending on your installed mobile check-in system, the technology used may or may not be visible.
There are four types of mobile check-in: NFC, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and QR code.
NFC mobile check-in
One of the most popular methods is NFC (near-field communication). This allows devices to exchange data when they’re nearby—for example, when you tap your credit card at the register or bump phones with a friend so you can share photos with them.
NFC is already integrated into many mobile phones and can make it easy for guests to check-in without walking to the front desk. When checking in at your hotel via their website or app, tap your smartphone against a reader located at reception, transmitting data from the device using Near Field Communication technology (NFC).
Bluetooth mobile check-in
The hotel room door unlocks with Bluetooth low-energy technology when you get close enough to it (usually within 5–10 feet). This can be annoying if you carry a lot of luggage—you don’t want to put everything down to open the door. In addition, many hotels don’t yet offer this type of keyless entry system.
For example, you can check our ShineACS Locks Bluetooth hotel lock system; all our Bluetooth hotel lock systems support unlocking hotel rooms with the phone app.
With Wi-Fi technology, you have to be in the range of the hotel Wi-Fi network for your phone to unlock the hotel room. On the one hand, this is more convenient than Bluetooth because your device doesn’t need to be as close (you could be up to 100 feet away).
On the other hand, it’s not safe if you want your privacy; anyone who knows your Wi-Fi password will also be able to enter your room without a physical key card or key fob.
Lastly, with QR codes, you scan a barcode on the door lock using an app with your phone camera to unlock the door remotely. This method is less secure than Bluetooth because anyone can scan that code while they walk past—but it’s still better than leaving spare keys under doormats!
What will you need to unlock the hotel room with your phone?
You will need a few things to open the hotel room door with your phone (if you’re booking a hotel that allows this). You’ll need:
A supported hotel door lock
The technology isn’t available at every hotel; Not all hotel doors come with the same kind of hotel lock. So if you want to use your phone to open the hotel door, you’ll have to choose a hotel that offers this technology. If you don’t know whether your chosen hotel offers it, check the website or call and ask.
A supported mobile app
If you want to use your phone as a key, you’ll need to download the right app for that specific brand’s program.
Here are some of your options:
- For Hilton Hotels and Resorts, use the HHonors App (iOS/Android) or My Hilton Guest App (iOS/Android).
- For Starwood Hotels & Resorts, download SPG Keyless for iPhone or Android phones.
- Marriott Rewards download their Mobile App for iPhone or Android phones (or download their Marriott Mobile App if staying in Europe.)
A supported mobile phone with Bluetooth or NFC
To use your phone as a key, it needs to have Bluetooth connectivity and NFC—a short-range wireless connectivity standard for devices like smartphones—capability built into it.
Most modern smartphones have at least one of those features (or both), but it’s worth ensuring your device is compatible before downloading any apps or booking a keyless hotel room.
Book the hotel
By and large, you’ll need to reserve your room through the hotel’s website or app specifically for them to provide you with a digital key. If you book through a third-party site like Expedia, there’s a decent chance that your reservation won’t include a digital key option.
Get the digital key
If a hotel has an app, I’d recommend using it over their website, as more often than not, it will have additional features beyond booking rooms and checking in that are worth having access to.
How do I unlock my hotel door with my phone?
Here are steps to unlock a hotel room with a phone:
- Book a hotel that supports opening a hotel room with the phone.
- Download the hotel app. For example, download the ShineACS TTlock app if you stay at a hotel using our TTlock Bluetooth hotel lock system.
- You’ll need to register the app and phone number before arriving at the hotel. Sign in to your account through the app, then request a digital key. If the hotel approves it, you’ll be able to open any compatible lock in the building with just your phone!
- Get a digital key. Open up the hotel’s app and request a digital key to lock whatever device you want to use to unlock your door (like your smartphone). Once approved, the hotel sends a temporary digital key to that device via text message or email.
- Unlock the hotel room with your phone by holding it against the lock sensor until you hear a click (or see an indicator light turn green).
- If your friends stay at the same hotel and want access codes, they can download the app, register for the service, and share their keys.
- When it’s time for check-out, it’s done automatically through the app: Request that housekeeping service come by immediately or at a specified time (and be sure not to forget anything).