Stats: The Top Hotel Brands by Guest Satisfaction of 2019

The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas
Ritz-Carlton was the winner of the luxury category. (Pictured: Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas)

J.D. Power has released the 23rd edition of its annual North America Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index Study, which examines how guests rate different hotel brands. This year, the study was redesigned to incorporate deeper guest profiling information and extended coverage of the hotel customer journey, J.D. Power said, including path to purchase, pre-stay communications and post-stay communications. 

The following hotel brands rank highest in guest satisfaction in their respective segments, J.D. Power says:

  • Luxury: The Ritz-Carlton (for the fifth consecutive year)
  • Upper Upscale: Hard Rock Hotel
  • Upscale: Best Western Premier
  • Upper Midscale: Drury Hotels (for the 14th consecutive year)
  • Midscale: Wingate by Wyndham (for the fifth consecutive year)
  • Economy: Microtel by Wyndham (for the second consecutive year)

Other key findings from the report:

Overall guest satisfaction increases by 114 points (on a 1,000-point scale) when guests experience a better-than-expected quality of sleep. At the same time, only 29 percent of hotel guests had such an experience. Of guests who do experience better-than-expected quality of sleep, 78 percent say they “definitely will” return to that property and 71 percent say they “definitely will” return to that brand.

The top factors that contribute to sleep quality, according to the report, are bed comfort, room quietness, comfort and quality of pillows, room temperature and comfort and quality of linens. Satisfaction scores for quality of sleep are also higher when hotels offer beyond-the-basics items, such as white noise and sound machines, earplugs, robe and slippers and authentic local décor, J.D. Power said.

The report also found that the quality of sleep directly correlate with the price of the room. The highest rate of better-than-expected sleep quality is in the luxury hotel segment (42%), followed by the upper upscale (33%), upscale (31%), upper midscale (28%), midscale (28%) and economy (23%) segments.

In addition to sleep quality, the arrival and check-in experience is also a key contributor to guest satisfaction, according to the report. The top check-in elements consistent with guest satisfaction are efficiency, with the process ideally taking five minutes or less, accuracy and offering a warm welcome. Failing to meet these criteria can cause satisfaction scores to drop by as much as 100 points, J.D. Power said. 

The study analyzed guest responses to more than 150 questions regarding their overall experiences and includes 85 officially ranked brands in six market segments, J.D. Power said. This year’s study is based on responses from approximately 44,890 guests who stayed at a hotel between June 2018 and May 2019.

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