Complimentary benefits are a big plus for properties, especially when the sector is trying to lure guests during the pandemic.
Guests are no longer booking the cheapest hotel they can find, these travellers want value for money experiences.
Michelle Cyster of Radisson Blu Hotel Waterfront shares the five complimentary things to look out for at a hotel:
As many travellers may know, some properties do not offer complimentary breakfasts in their rates and may have to fork extra rands to enjoy a spread at the property. Of course, many do include lavish breakfasts in the rate.
Cyster said travellers should query about breakfast when booking.
“Not all hotels offer complimentary breakfasts. But we all know that people love a good hotel breakfast, so check ahead to see if it’s included.
"Guests can also ask to have their breakfast delivered to their rooms. Many hotels offer this as a service, and for some, it’s free. If you’re the type to enjoy breakfast in bed, this option is for you," she said.
Fitness enthusiasts, or those who want to work out the extra calories during their holidays, also prefer hotels with fully-equipped gyms where they can train in between their activities.
Cyster advised guests to enquire about whether they offer a fitness centre and the equipment available.
"Many luxury hotels even offer personal trainers, and while this is an additional cost to the guest, it might be a great way to keep your fitness regime on track. Of course, the use of the gym and fitness centre is usually free if you are working out on your own," she said.
If the hotel has a spa and what facilities are free
With wellness becoming a focus in travel, especially after the pandemic, many hotels have included spa offerings.
While most are at an additional cost, some do offer complimentary use of some of its offerings.
Cyster said hotels with spas offer certain areas that hotel guests can access free of charge.
"Amani Spa and Wellness at our hotel, for example, allows guests over the age of 16 to use the relaxation area around the indoor pool.
"Some hotels have relaxing areas that overnight guests can use. If a spa treatment is not your thing or not in your budget, this is a great way to experience the spa without any additional costs," said Cyster.
Fluffy robes and slippers
Who can resist a robe and slippers? Right? Well, while most luxury hotels offer this to guests, some budget-friendly offerings also include them in their rooms.
“The fluffy robes and slippers have been part of hotel culture for years. You will be surprised how many people absolutely love this part of the whole hotel experience. It’s one of the first things many people look for when they get to a hotel," she said.
If you do not feel like eating out, some hotels can arrange an in-room dinner, depending on the size of the room.
“If your hotel offers this, it could make for a great romantic getaway or a fun way to celebrate a special occasion. Or do it for no reason at all other than to enjoy the views," she said.